Sweden and the Nordic region is globally recognized as sustainability leader within the IT industry. Nowhere else in the world is the concentration of leading sustainable businesses so high, nowhere else are sustainable procurement requirements so ambitious and demanding, especially within IT.
There is no shortage of sustainability challenges within IT and electronics, and with that, no shortage of efforts. We know that focused efforts can make a real difference.
Atea Sustainability Focus is an initiative that will increase the focus and pace of the IT industry sustainability work globally, embracing the opportunities provided by the Sustainable Development Goals. The initiative provides a platform for the Responsible Business Alliance (RBA) and the global IT industry to engage directly and effectively with the Nordic market – at the forefront when it comes to sustainability demands. By inviting Nordic customers to engage in an annual dialogue, they are given the opportunity to set the pace and priorities for the global sustainability agenda within IT.
At the core of the initiative – the Nordic Advisory Board facilitated by Atea will provide recommendations that balance customers’ demands and industry possibilities. The annual focus will facilitate progress.
The ASF dialogue is an annual survey designed to gather the Nordic markets insights, knowledge and expectations for a more sustainable IT industry. It targets the most engaged IT buyers in the region holding the sustainability flag highest.
ASF Advisory Board is a council of Nordic sustainability leaders from both the private and public sector, who also happen to be among the largest IT buyers in the Nordics and digitalization leaders in their own industry. Each organization contributes with sustainability and IT expertise.
This group of experts is tasked to analyze and interpret the customers’ views gathered through the annual ASF Dialogue and to formulate focused and relevant recommendations for the Responsible Business Alliance and its members. The goal is to help the RBA prioritize and further develop its sustainability work and spread it among its members.
In the second ASF Report, launched in 2019, Nordic it buyers stress the need for the it industry to be more circular. The report is based on a survey where Nordic it buyers point out the sustainability aspect they feel the it industry most urgently needs to address and recommendations formulated by the ASF Advisory Board. The report concludes that a transition into a circular economy will have positive effects on several other sustainability areas, and recommends the industry to focus on the design phase.
The first ASF Report focused on transparency as a prerequisite to sustainability and was published in 2018.
Atea Sustainability Focus was launched on 6-7 July 2017 in Visby, in the context of Almedalen – the largest annual meeting place for politicians, business and civil society in Sweden. The launch event in itself created a platform for sustainability leadership – providing inspiration about the role of IT for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals and galvanizing Nordic IT buyers into setting a bold but credible agenda for the industry to pursue.
Trisa Thompson Senior Vice President & Chief Responsibility Officer, Corporate Social Responsibility, DELL EMC
Deborah Albers Vice President Operations, Electronic industry Citizenship Coalition
Anders Hagström, Head of IT Labs and Green IT Manager – Innovation at HM
Andy Rietschel, Enterprise Sales Manager Tesla
Sören Enholm from TCO Development
Annukka Dickens from HP
Right now, the whole world is looking at Sweden and the Nordic region's work on sustainability within IT. Nowhere else does consumers and purchasing organizations place equally high demands on environmental and social sustainability linked to IT. However, with success comes responsibility. We want to spread the Swedish and Nordic way of working with the issues to the entire global IT industry. This will speed up and facilitate work while at the same time achieving a clear global focus on sustainability issues. As the Nordic region's largest independent retailer, Atea has both the muscles, trust and business contacts required to quickly gather information about sustainability issues.
At the beginning of this summer, Atea invites all Nordic IT departments to respond to a consumer survey regarding which areas that are most important for them right now related to sustainability. The answers are then compiled by the Atea Sustainability Focus Advisory Board, a council consisting of representatives from Nordic companies and organizations in the forefront of sustainability and digitization. The ASF Advisory Board then formulates a report that is handed over to the global IT industry's co-operation body on sustainability issues, the Electronic Industry Citizenship Coalition (EICC) and other stakeholders once a year. The report will also contain recommendations on which steps that are reasonable to expect the IT industry to undertake.
The target audience for the survey is IT, purchasing and sustainability employees at companies and organizations across the Nordic region. The recipient of the report is primarily the Global IT Industry Cooperative in Sustainability Issues, the Electronic Industry Citizenship Coalition (EICC), but other bodies dealing with sustainability issues are welcome to take note of the content of the report.
The goal is to help the global IT industry to focus its efforts and thus increase the pace of efforts to create a better world. This is achieved through EICC, giving its members the right processes and decision making for the continued sustainability work based on Nordic sustainability efforts. We also hope that we can inspire other industries to work in a similar way and follow in our footstep.The Advisory Board
The Atea Sustainability Focus - Advisory Board - will consist of independent representatives from leading companies and organizations within sustainability and IT in the Nordic region. Examples of companies that are represented; H & M and Alfa Laval.
What happens next?
The report will be handed over to EICC at the beginning of next year and will help create a focus thru new processes that its members can implement. The purpose is to meet market needs and tomorrow's requirements for sustainability in procurement. This way, we create an ecosystem throughout the global IT industry's sustainability work, which contributes to positive developments ahead.
What happens in Almedalen 2017?
Atea will host a new international sustainability conference in the context of Almedalen – the largest annual meeting place for politicians, business and civil society in Sweden – called Atea Sustainability Forum. The Forum´s premiere on July 6th and marks the start of the process of producing the report. During two days, a seminar with panel debates and keynote speakers, with international experts from companies such as Tesla, Dell EMC, H & M, TCO development and EICC on the speaker list. The conference aims to offer sustainability professionals a chance to exchange experiences, reflect on the challenges they face and a possibility to meet the industry's leading representatives from around the world. In the evening of July 6th, a large sustainability mingle will be held at “Kallis” in Visby to celebrate the end of day one. On Friday, July 7th sustainability seminars will be held with workshops to provide a good basis for the report writing during the fall. What’s Atea view on sustainability / sustainable consumption / justice issues?
We are building Sweden and the Nordic countries with IT. Our innovative solutions help society to move in a more sustainable direction at the same time increase productivity and efficiency in both the public and private sectors. At the same time, our business has an impact on our world and it is important for both ourselves and our customers that we take responsibility for this. A sustainability perspective, therefore, should affect all the decisions we make and the activities we conduct, along the entire chain in terms of responsible purchasing, business ethics, environmental considerations and personnel issues.
What is EICC?
The Electronic Industry Citizenship Coalition is an industry organization that have been working to raise the ethics of the IT industry and make its players more socially and environmentally responsible for the last 12 years. EICC was founded by eight leading IT manufacturers and now has more than 110 members from all stages of the supply chain. Together, member companies employ approximately 6 million employees. In 2016, Atea applied for membership of the organization, which was granted.
When will, the report be delivered to the EICC?
Whats EICCs view on the initiative?
The EICC embraces the opportunity to gain significant input from the region in the world that the whole world is watching and following in sustainability issues. With input from the Nordic market, its members are given the opportunity to pursue development efforts in sustainability issues with a whole new approach and at a faster pace than before, with better results as a result thus.