Best Use of Thought Leadership Highly Commended 2022: PwC with Green Jobs Barometer

Best Use of Thought Leadership

The government’s Ten Point Plan of November 2020 set ambitious goals for the growth of green jobs, and was followed in July 2021 by the Green Jobs Taskforce report. As PwC thought through the implications of these policy positions, it became apparent that there were gaps in the evidence base, so it wasn’t clear how progress toward the targets could be measured and monitored.

This gave PwC the idea of a Green Jobs Barometer (GJB) – a data-driven tool to measure and monitor jobs and other measures of the green economy. They anticipated a big demand for it, as the broad green ambition still needed clear information to help inform specific policy decisions. What’s more, the immediacy of Net Zero targets meant it was needed urgently.

PwC’s first task was to answer the fundamental question “What is a green job?” The UK’s Office for National Statistics and the International Labour Organisation had struggled to do this, and in defining a single, clear definition that could inform consistent data-gathering and policy-making, PwC reached a broad definition that regards green jobs as ‘work in roles that seek to either produce or provide environmentally friendly products and services, or adapt work processes to become more environmentally friendly or use fewer natural resources.’

This definition is a key element of the GJB, and explains why so many stakeholders find it useful. It offers a consistent and sustained measurement that allows them to monitor the development of green jobs over time, and across sectors and regions. In essence, it has created a linkage between environmental and employment policy agendas, which had previously remained separate.

The Barometer had an instant impact, with government and business stakeholders being engaged in its development, and it now helps projects and institutions understand what the green agenda means for UK jobs, to guide policy on reskilling and recruitment.

The Barometer has brought PwC some of its best media coverage for recent thought leadership, including BBC coverage reaching an audience of up to 150 million. The World Economic Forum also expressed an interest in global plans. The Barometer has helped PwC dominate the climate conversation among large consulting firms, with 73% share of voice in broadcast and print.

Commercially, it has helped PwC be seen as an innovator and authority in this field, to attract new projects and engagements with institutions such as the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), to help understand the green agenda’s implications for employment and training in different regions and sectors.

International attention has come from Australia, Canada, Singapore, South Africa and other economies that want to learn about PwC’s tools and analysis. The Barometer’s core team is now working with PwC colleagues in those countries to consider how it might become a global initiative, or adapted to suit specific territories.

And this is just the start: the GJB is intended to be a tool for tracking progress into the long term, with work ongoing and an update due in September 2022.

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