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Dr Dorothea Kleine and Dr Graça Brightwell are the first academics to participate in the Sustainable Public Procurement Initiative of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). They attended the Initiative's meeting in Paris this week.
Dorothea and Graça were invited following their work on the Choices Project. This is a collaborative project between Royal Holloway, University of London, the Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and Universidad Diego Portales, Chile. It also involves the Ethical Consumer Research Association in the UK, Instituto Akatu in Brazil and Ciudadano Responsable in Chile. The Choices Project team were invited to participate in the UNEP initiative as their research is pioneering in its examination of factors citizens feel state bodies should take into account when making procurement decisions. The research clearly demonstrates that the Brazilian and Chilean public see factors other than price as important. Environmental sustainability and workers' labour conditions are among those factors which were frequently identified in both countries.
Being involved in the UNEP meeting, gives the project team a chance to feed their findings into wider policy discussions. For further details see a longer report on the College News page.
The Choices Project is funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) and the Department for International Development (DFID).
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