BES funded Jewellery Study makes impact in the industry

Friday 01 August 2014

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The BES Pump Priming Funded project “Responsible Business Practices in SMES:  The case of the Birmingham Jewellery Quarter” has been well received by the jewellery industry. Last February, the project team, led by Prof. Marylyn Carrigan, presented the key findings of the study in the seminar: “What’s in it for me? Raising Standards in the Jewellery Industry”, co-hosted with the British Jewellers Association (BJA) and held at the Birmingham Jewellery School. With more than 30 industry practitioners as audience, the event opened new opportunities for the research team to engage further with the Industry, including invitations to a number of industry events and collaborative discussions.

On May 15, Prof. Carrigan presented a paper on “Bridging the value-action gap: SMEs, CSR and responsible jewellery consumption” at the Responsible Jewellery Council (RJC) Inaugural CSR Conference held in London. 

This event brought together more than 100 international RJC company members (such as Piaget, Cartier, Bulgari), policy makers from jewellery industry (World Gold Council) and European Commission (Policy Officer for Raw Materials, DG Trade) for panel discussions on future imperatives of the industry, human rights in the supply chain and creating value across the supply chain through jewellers becoming involved with sustainability issues. Prof. Carrigan was also a speaker in the World Jewellery Confederation Congress, with their themes on security, jewellery manufacturing and Corporate Social responsibility, which was held on May 17-21 in Moscow, Russia.  This event was participated in by leaders of national associations of jewellers from more than 20 countries.  In August, Prof. Carrigan will speak at the International Jewellery London Conference, which is the UK’s main jewellery trade event that focuses on the future trends that will drive the £4.9 Billion UK jewellery and watch market.  She will be taking part in a debate about CSR and the jewellery industry, and will be on a panel with Dr. Gaetano Cavalieri, the President of the World Jewellery Confederation (CIBJO), and James Courage, Chairman of the Responsible Jewellery Council.

The research is further disseminated to the industry through numerous press releases of these major trade events. Two practitioner reports have been included in RJC’s first public Impacts Report released last June 30: “Getting Consumers to Buy into Responsible Jewellery” by Dr Caroline Moraes and “A Golden Opportunity for Small Firms?” by Prof. Carrigan. Prof. Carrigan having been appointed as Member of the RJC Standards Committee from April 2014 onwards will create impact in the industry on a wider scale. The Committee, comprised of 14 representatives (2 from Jewellery industry and 12 external stakeholders) works towards consensus in the RJC standards development processes.