Michigan Business Sustainability Roundtable

MBSR

The Michigan Business Sustainability Roundtable is guided by a shared vision for a more sustainable Michigan.

In 2035, Michigan’s thriving economy is the product of a shared commitment to sustainability, justice, conservation of the Great Lakes, and innovative growth

The MBSR envisions that sustainability is a way of life for all Michiganders, enabled by education, infrastructure and incentives that make sustainable choices easier and more economical. Justice and equity are centered in decision making and action. Michigan’s clean energy transition is bolstered by significant strides in efficiency and electrification. The state’s trademark innovation, demonstrated grit, workforce talent and commitment to stewardship of our priceless Great Lakes and other natural resources have made the state a climate-competitive destination for investment and growth. 

The Michigan Business Sustainability Roundtable

The Michigan Business Sustainability Roundtable was created to build an equitable and socially and environmentally sustainable State of Michigan through the power of business. The group includes senior business leaders who are committed to working toward transformational change in the social and environmental performance of their companies, their industries and the State of Michigan.

The need for action now

As the United States seeks to reposition itself as a key player in fighting the climate crisis, businesses have much to gain from driving sustainability in their operations and even more to lose if they stand idle. Coupled with this call to business climate action is the imperative to do so in a just and equitable way. Business leaders, employees and social justice advocates are increasingly asking what role their companies play in advancing social justice. Customers are demanding that businesses wield their influence to address both environmental and social impacts of climate change.

How can we enable collective action?

While each business faces unique challenges in setting—and achieving—ambitious sustainability goals, shared roadblocks and pain points also affect many companies and industries. Neglected transportation, water and communications infrastructure; outdated or counterproductive policies; and limited access to renewable energy options are examples of barriers that affect not just individual businesses or industries but also entire economies.

By identifying and tackling these common challenges, companies that are committed to achieving meaningful, positive change can unlock significant potential. With the Erb Institute’s long history of teaching, research and engagement toward enabling sustainability in business, the institute is embracing a new approach that aims to harness individual businesses’ efforts to enable greater collective action.

Adopting a place-based approach, the Erb Institute convened the Michigan Business Sustainability Roundtable (MBSR), a group of senior-level sustainability leaders from some of Michigan’s most influential and innovative companies. These individuals represent companies from the automotive, food, agriculture, manufacturing and financial sectors, among others. They are rich in talent and experience, and they are uniquely positioned to push Michigan toward greater and more sustainable environmental, social and economic prosperity.

As the MBSR’s convening entity, the institute provides an established platform, comprehensive research and the objective facilitation needed to advance the group’s agenda. Erb works closely with individual MBSR members and the collective group to articulate shared objectives and craft the roundtable’s work plans. The institute leverages its faculty, exceptional graduate and undergraduate students, and extensive alumni and partner networks to inform the group’s direction.

MBSR Reports

In support of the MBSR, the Erb Institute is producing several internal and external research reports and landscape assessments. External reports include:

The MBSR’s work is: 

  • driven by justice

  • Michigan-centric

  • externally focused

  • powered by collective action

  • informed by research

Who is the MBSR?
Representation by Sector

The MBSR comprises senior sustainability leaders from organizations headquartered in or with a large presence in Michigan, including:

Mobility

Ford Motor Company

Manufacturing

Whirlpool

BorgWarner

Food & Agriculture

Meijer

Financial Services

Comerica

Energy

Consumers Energy
DTE Energy
Walker-Miller Energy Services

Education

Michigan State University

Real Estate

Bedrock Real Estate Services
Related Companies

The views expressed by the Michigan Business Sustainability Roundtable are those of the collective group and do not necessarily reflect the official policies or positions of the MBSR individual members and/or their affiliated companies or organizations.

MBSR members support MI Healthy Climate Plan, April 2022

Corporate Leaders Support a Carbon-Neutral Michigan

Equity and sustainability are critical to the economic success and viability of our companies and Michigan. We are sustainability leaders representing some of Michigan’s largest and most trusted businesses. As members of the Michigan Business Sustainability Roundtable (MBSR), convened by the Erb Institute at University of Michigan, we urge all Michiganders to come together in collaboration and support of Michigan’s movement toward a healthier and more sustainable economy.

On April 22, 2022 Michigan’s Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE) delivered to Governor Gretchen Whitmer the final MI Healthy Climate Plan, a high-level strategy to guide the state toward its 2050 carbon neutrality goal. This plan was conceived through a thoughtful, stakeholder-informed process in response to the growing climate crisis. EGLEs commitment to carbon neutrality centers on job creation, economic growth, a more resilient Great Lakes system and improved quality of life for all Michiganders.

Have questions?

Contact

Melissa Zaksek

Director, Michigan Business Sustainability Roundtable

Associate Director, Research

mzaksek@umich.edu