Agnes: hoe krijgen we gewicht aan de ‘goede’ kant?

Agnes: Ik zou hem willen vragen hoe we bedrijven die beter bezig zijn dan de rest (Unilever bijvoorbeeld) beter kunnen laten lobbyen voor goed klimaatbeleid. Het lijkt dat bedrijven (zoals Shell of de auto en staalindustrie) meer gemotiveerd zijn om massa's lobbyisten in te zetten als ze iets kunnen verliezen dan als ze iets kunnen winnen. Hoe krijgen we meer gewicht aan de andere kant?

Paul Gilding: This is a very interesting one. I spent a long time working on this. The companies have to get a benefit for doing it. Not just on the short term, but immediately. They have to argue against their callings in business and that is quite uncomfortable. It is like I would ask Greenpeace to lobby against the World Wildlife Fund. If I disagree on many things with the World Wildlife Fund, it is culturally very hard to attack your own 'tribe'. Companies like Unilever and Shell of course argue so now and then but in the end they are both businesses. For them it feels like they are all from the business tribe and as I said it is very hard to attack your own tribe. But they will do it and can do it, if they are given the confidence to do it. The way to reinforce that belief is to say 'Ok, how can we help you do this? What can we do to make it easier for you to do it?' I personally do a lot of that kind of work with CEO's of groups of CEO's from different companies.

Sometimes there is an additional challenge. When my former organization, Greenpeace, was doing this kind of work, it sometimes made the company less likely to take action. The people were thinking: 'Greenpeace asks me to do this so it must be wrong, because I don't like Greenpeace.' Or: 'I will be attacked by my collegues for doing business with Greenpeace.' That it is indeed a big challenge for Greenpeace employees (red: also see the answer of Paul Gilding about his vision for Greenpeace), but one that can be overcome by keep talking to companies and say: 'Ok, let’s get together and do this together.'

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