Apprentice workshop Apprentice workshop

Our commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion

Our values permeate every aspect of our organisation, from the expectations we have of leaders, to the opportunities our people should share, and the kinds of clients we work with. These nine, progressive commitments guide our decision-making every day.

1. Leadership

We will foster and develop leaders, and an approach to leadership, that is diverse, understands and responds to the communities we serve, celebrates difference and has inclusion at its heart.

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We will increase diversity across all decision-making roles in Arup, and our leadership in each region will better respond to the diversity of the communities we serve.

We will establish a forum through which a much broader range of members, including our members who belong to a minority group, will have a voice and exert influence at board level.The ability to lead inclusively and create environments that foster diversity will be part of our definition of leadership – and so will be integrated into our leadership development programmes, appointment and promotion criteria, appraisals, the stories we tell and the role models we make. We will expect a meaningful track record in advocating for and supporting diversity and inclusion from those seeking promotion as a leader in Arup.

All succession planning, promotion and appointment conversations and processes will include proactive challenge around the diversity of candidate lists.

2. Thriving

We will make our environment one where excellent people belong, thrive and progress offering tailored career support, proactively seeking opportunities to develop our future leaders, and being open to challenge and change.

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We will work to level the playing field, and to build the confidence of our members who belong to underrepresented groups as they face the particular challenges that still prevail.We will foster a culture which assumes positive intent and enables open dialogue, challenge and change.

We will undertake work to understand where there are obstacles to retention and progression within Arup and to address them.

We will develop guidelines to support current leaders in promoting the development of future leaders –by June 2021.

Focusing initially on leaders and future leaders, we will scale the existing examples of best practice in career support and development that we have, and where necessary add new approaches –by March 2022.

3. Learning

Our members will be well-educated in the issues facing their colleagues and clients who belong to minority groups, will understand their responsibility to work inclusively and promote diversity, and will celebrate difference and the opportunities it brings.

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We will review current practice and resources available globally and in region to ensure that we are delivering excellent learning, and that it is globally consistent wherever appropriate –by March 2021.

We will integrate this strand of learning as a priority in the new learning strategy that is being developed for the firm and will be overseen by Arup University and People Council –by March 2021.

We will create a campaign to make the case for education for all in this area, to raise awareness of the learning available and to strongly encourage full participation of all members –in the course of 2021.

4. Clarity

We will be clear about what good behaviour looks like and won’t tolerate discrimination, micro-aggressions or bad behaviour of any kind. We will foster a culture in which we are able to have candid conversations and challenge one another with courage and kindness, and where concerns can be raised and addressed freely and safely.

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We will develop and roll-out an approach to equipping and enabling all members to have better conversations with each other – by June 2021.

We will establish an approach that provides a safe space for members to raise concerns – by June 2021.

We will develop, publish and embed a ‘behaviour charter’ which makes clear our expectations of one another in terms of inclusive behaviour and enables us to challenge behaviour which doesn’t meet the standard – by September 2021.

5. Clients

We intend to work with and for clients with whom we share a common purpose, and who share our commitment to reducing inequalities and promoting fairness.

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With established clients, we will seek to increase our influence at senior level and to establish a relationship of mutual learning, growth and challenge around diversity and inclusion.

With new or target clients, we will consider their values, intention and direction of travel in relation to diversity and inclusion.

We will assess our globally Managed Clients to ascertain what the baseline is – by March 2021.

We will showcase internally some examples of best practice of inclusion and diversity being integral aspects of our client relationships – by June 2021.

We will convene a symposium for key client relationship leads to consider ways of increasing our influence and impact in this area – by September 2021.

6. Work

We will consider inclusion, as an element of sustainable development, in all aspects of our projects –from bid, through inception to delivery. We will always guide our work, and those involved in it, onwards towards even more diversity and an ever more inclusive approach because we know this produces better outcomes.

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We will develop, share and embed clear articulations of the demonstrable value of greater diversity and a more inclusive approach to projects, and showcase examples of best practice – by September 2021.

We will review our end-to-end approach to projects and the AMS with the aim of identifying and then ‘hardwiring in’ opportunities to increase diversity and inclusion – by March 2022.

We will develop and share with clients our best practice guidelines for maximising diversity and inclusion on projects – by March 2022.

7. Influence

We will use our reputation and standing and influence to lead on and advocate for improving diversity, equity and inclusion in our sector, in the built environment and in the wider societies within which we operate.

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This is a manifestation of our purpose and consistent with our commitment to increase our influence and aspire to excellence. It’s about a holistic approach to how we deploy our deep technical expertise to the best possible ends.

We will publish a Cities Alive piece which speaks to issues around racial diversity and inclusion in cities – by March 2021.

We will work within our sector to develop, share and pilot ideas to tackle racial and social exclusion in the built environment sector.

We will continue, more and more, to seek opportunities to partner with, learn from and sometimes lead other organisations in issues relating to diversity and inclusion.

8. Future talent

We will adopt an approach to finding, attracting, selecting and recruiting talent that brings the very best people into Arup from as diverse a pool of talent as possible.

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Attraction - we will review our attraction strategies globally including which universities and schools we target – by September 2021.

We will review our employer brand and consider global campaigns aimed at particular underrepresented groups – by September 2021.

Selection - we will review, select and adopt best practice approaches to selection which maximise diversity, and then monitor and report on both their implementation and their impact – by September 2021.

We will require all interview panels for leadership grades to be diverse by March 2021, and interview panels for all grades to be diverse by March 2022.

Recruitment - we will develop an approach to offering and onboarding which is deeply welcoming and inclusive – by March 2022.

9. Measurement

We will develop an approach to measuring and reporting on diversity, including racial diversity, that is respectful of our different cultural contexts and geographies and enables us to share a clear picture of our current position and to track our progress.

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We will compile as detailed a picture as possible of our current position – using existing data and additional voluntary surveys, and share the findings – by March 2021.

As part of the design and implementation of the new People System, we will work to develop a new approach to measurement and reporting that is meaningful, sustainable and culturally sensitive – by March 2022.

Our values

Founded by Sir Ove Arup, a gifted engineer-philosopher with an original and restless mind, our firm has always had a keen sense of purpose. The six aims, means and values Sir Ove identified in his Key Speech (1970) guide us to this day.