Traditional sustainability is no longer adequate, according to a new report from Human8 and Space Doctors.
The ‘What Matter 2024’ report finds that nearly seven in 10 (67%) of Australian respondents believe we need to move beyond ‘sustaining’ and into ‘reversing’ the damage done.
Traditional sustainability focuses primarily on environmental considerations, explains Human8, while regenerative sustainability or regeneration broadens the scope. Regenerative sustainability extends beyond the planet, encompassing people and communities.
The report finds 79% of surveyed Australians believe brands need to take responsibility to help safeguard the future of our planet.
“The key takeaway is that most Australians no longer believe the status-quo mindset when it comes to the state of our environment and our communities is sufficient,” says Human8 Australia Senior Business Director Matthew Jorgensen.
“With regenerative sustainability, brands are challenged to foster a more harmonious relationship between commerce and caring for our people and planet. A healthy environment and social equity are interconnected components of a truly sustainable and regenerative future.
“We need to fundamentally change how we do things if we want to safeguard the wellbeing of present and future generations. Our 2024 ‘What Matters’ report outlines actions that brands and stakeholders operating in Australia can and must take, to respond to what matters to people.”
The four-part study with a mix of cultural and human insight methodologies culminated in quantification with 13,028 consumers in 17 markets (including 801 consumers in Australia) in October/November 2023.
Key highlights for Australia include:
- The time for sustainability is now. 71% of Australian respondents are worried about the state of our planet for future generations. 67% say that drastic changes are needed to our lifestyle.
- Consumers look to brands for inspiration and vision to move them towards positive change. 70% of Australian respondents believe making the world a better place isn’t something they can do on their own. It requires people/organisations/brands with a clear vision to take the lead and drive change.
- Moving the needle on sustainability. Only one in 10 surveyed Australians can confidently state they have a sustainable lifestyle. Price (57%), availability (42%) and education (37%) of/on sustainable options would help consumers adopt a more sustainable lifestyle.
- Brands need to be more transparent about sustainability efforts. 77% of Australian respondents say brands need to provide more information about sustainability efforts, with 43% saying that brands that don’t communicate about sustainability aren’t sustainable.
- Flip the script on diversity and inclusion. 43% of Australian respondents state that fighting dominant norms and labels used in society is draining and ineffective. They believe it’s better to just let go and create your own way of doing things.
Download a copy of the ‘What Matters 2024’ report here.