Kenes Group, Elevating the Leadership Role in Sustainability of the Associative Sector

In today’s global corporate landscape, the imperative for sustainability is not merely a trend but a fundamental responsibility that organisations across sectors are embracing. Among these, the meetings and associations sector, often pivotal yet understated in its impact, is making significant strides towards sustainable practices. Kenes Group, a renowned Professional Conference Organiser (PCO) and Association Management Company (AMC), has exemplified this commitment by joining the United Nations Global Compact.

The UN Global Compact stands as the world’s largest corporate sustainability initiative, urging companies to integrate principles of human rights, labour standards, environmental stewardship, and anti-corruption measures into their operations and strategies. Established in 2000, this voluntary initiative has garnered participation from over 15,000 companies and 3,000 non-business signatories worldwide, spanning more than 160 countries.

Kenes Group’s decision to align with the UN Global Compact in October 2023 underscores its dedication to fostering sustainable business practices. CEO Ori Lahav affirms, “Kenes Group reaffirms its support of the Ten Principles of the UN Global Compact through our ongoing efforts in human rights, labour standards, environmental sustainability, and anti-corruption measures.” This commitment is not just a statement but is substantiated by the company’s first Communication on Progress (COP) submitted to the UN Global Compact in April, 2024.

In this inaugural COP, Kenes Group transparently details its sustainability initiatives and progress, encapsulating its Sustainability Report for 2023. This report, a cornerstone of the organisation’s Sustainability Road Map 2023–2025, outlines comprehensive strategies ranging from governance and ethical practices to climate action. Besides the Sustainability Report for 2023, the COP constitutes a 79-queries questionnaire disclosing the progress and commitments of the company in terms of governance, human rights, labour, environment, and anti-corruption measures.

Elena Fis, Sustainability Officer at Kenes Group and who leads the involvement of the PCO with the UN Global Compact initiative, emphasises: “Joining the UN Global Compact is pivotal for us as it enhances our global collaboration efforts and strengthens our commitment to ethical business practices and environmental awareness. At the beginning of 2024 Kenes Group introduced, for the first time, a sustainability strategy for the company and all of our events that is aligned with all ten UN Global Compact principles”.

Moreover, Kenes Group’s employees now have access to the UN Global Compact Academy, an invaluable resource hub providing actionable insights and best practices tailored to diverse corporate functions. This initiative not only equips the workforce with essential knowledge but also empowers them to drive sustainable practices across all levels of the organisation.

The significance of Kenes Group’s participation in the UN Global Compact extends beyond its internal operations. It signifies a broader recognition within the meetings and associations sector of its role in the global corporate ecosystem. By embracing sustainability principles, Kenes Group not only enhances its corporate reputation but also aligns itself with global goals, particularly the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) set forth by the United Nations.

Through its proactive engagement with the UN Global Compact, Kenes Group sets a precedent for other organisations within the sector. As the world increasingly demands corporate accountability and transparency, initiatives like these illustrate how companies can leverage their influence to foster positive change globally.

In conclusion, Kenes Group’s journey with the UN Global Compact exemplifies a proactive approach to sustainability within the meetings and associations sector. By integrating ethical principles into its business strategies and operations, Kenes Group not only upholds its commitment to responsible practices but also reinforces the associative sector’s pivotal role in advancing global sustainability goals. As we navigate towards a more sustainable future, initiatives like these are crucial in paving the way for a corporate world that prioritises people, planet, and prosperity.


Estefanía Zárate Angarita

Kenes Group Media & Communications Manager


This article was originally published in the #115 issue of the Headquarters Magazine – PCO Insights, page 44, 45 – July 2024: