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Corporate Sustainability

Our Sustainability Commitment, We’re in This Together

As an employee-owned firm, we strive toward an inclusive, sustainable future and elevate our communities, industry and professions through human-inspired technical and creative solutions.

For more info contact

Lisa Fewins
Corporate Sustainability Director
Lisa Fewins

Environment, Social and Governance Report, 2023

What do we owe the future? That is a question we often ask ourselves as employee-owners at HDR. While we are proud of our rich history and the great things we make possible for our employees, clients and communities, we are aware we have an opportunity to impact future generations with our professional services. 

Our ESG Report continues our tradition of working to align our reporting with the Global Reporting Initiative.

  • ESG Report
  • ESG Report, Appendix 1: GRI Index & Data, fill out the form to download →

Our Culture of Sustainability

With every action, we ask the same question: what’s our impact on the world?

From designing a road that improves mobility to a hospital that heals, we take to heart our role in making the world a better, smarter, safer place. We think globally and act locally to improve the places where we live and work.

It begins by working together, with our clients and communities, ending each time with collaborations that add meaning and value. We know every small action yields great results. We take responsibility through:

Community Involvement & Support

Both as individuals and as a company, we take pride in supporting efforts to better our communities — not just financially, but also with our time. Whether it’s providing basic needs, beautifying a public place or leading enriching activities, we are passionate about being engaged.

Many of our team members also volunteer with aid organisations such as Bridges to Prosperity and Engineers without Borders, giving their time and sharing their professional talents to provide communities around the world access to healthcare, clean water and modern energy grids. And through Design 4 Others, more than 200 of our employees have provided architecture, engineering and planning services to communities in need. Recent projects have included a new school in Kenya to expand capacity and increase the number of students who have access to education and a new outpatient clinic in rural Malawi that provides community-based care to more than 20,000 residents.

In addition, in 2012 we created the HDR Foundation. Fueled by donations from our employees, the Foundation provides support to nonprofit organizations in the communities in which we live and work. Since its inception, the Foundation has awarded over $9 million in grants.

Health & Safety

We want our employees to bring their best self to work, which is why we work hard to make wellness a significant part of our culture. Our full-time wellness manager, along with over 130 volunteer employee wellness coordinators dedicate their time to promoting healthy lifestyles through multidimensional wellness initiatives. From health education, to tobacco cessation programs and financial wellness, the goal is to improve the quality of life for our employees and their families.

And while we want our employees to come to work happy and healthy, we also strive to make sure they go home safely — every day. We foster a culture of safe behavior to ensure a safe work environment both in the office and on our project sites. Careful planning, comprehensive training, continual observation and feedback, root cause analyses and consistent management support are the cornerstones of our philosophy that “good enough” is never good enough when it comes to safety.


Sustainable Business Practices

We are committed to reducing our environmental impact through the use of sustainable business practices. We continually examine our day-to-day activities to determine where we can make business improvements that deliver long-term sustainable value. We set measurable goals and assess the results to see how we should move forward.

In 2011, HDR established a goal to reduce GHG emissions by 20% by 2020, adjusted for growth, from a 2011 baseline. Although COVID-19 resulted in reduced emissions, HDR emissions were trending in the right direction, as shown in an overall reduction of 19% from 2011 baseline by 2019. Further, HDR reduced its average GHG emission per HDR professional by approximately 26% between 2019 and 2023.

We are continually working to increase our emissions reductions through targeted investments in our offices and improved business practices, as well as educational and awareness initiatives. We continue to update our processes so we can better understand and identify the greatest sources of GHG emissions within our organization, establish a data-driven approach to developing reduction strategies, and track progress in reducing emissions and towards meeting other sustainability goals, such as energy and cost savings. 

View some of our other initiatives in our Sustainable Business Practices infographic.