Cambridge, MA – Bruner/Cott & Associates, a Cambridge-based architecture and planning firm, is the first New England-based company to receive the International Living Future Institute’s JUST label.
JUST is a corporate responsibility and transparency metric emphasizing diversity, equity, social justice, and stewardship among service providers, manufacturers, and nonprofits. The firm’s JUST certification reinforces Bruner/Cott’s deeply rooted commitment to positive social change through design and supports its dedication to a sustainable future.
“In a relatively short time frame since the program launched, JUST has garnered worldwide interest and is helping organizations to develop better employee engagement policies and community stewardship practices,’” said Francis Janes, JUST program manager at the International Living Future Institute.
The JUST program intends to broaden the conversation and create a common language with regard to social equity practices. It helps organizations identify valuable opportunities to make life better for people from all walks of life.
Bruner/Cott is currently working on two projects — including the newly completed R.W. Kern Center at Hampshire College — that are pursuing full LBC certification.
“Bruner/Cott has the distinction of being the first design firm in New England to earn the JUST label, joining other worthy organizations in the U.S., Canada, Mexico, Australia, and New Zealand.” Said Janes.
Highlights of Bruner/Cott’s JUST label qualifications include:
- Local Economic Impact: Bruner/Cott believes strongly in supporting the local economy, and is a member of Cambridge Local First. The firm purchases 22% of its goods and services from suppliers within 300 miles of the office. It uses a local community bank for financial services. And its shareholders live within an average of 5.7 miles of the office.
- Giving Back: The firm believes in giving back to local, professional, and global communities and advancing dialogue on design, social, economic, and environmental issues through its work practices. It is dedicated to giving back through volunteer time, teaching, and donation of 10 percent of its profits to IRS-registered non-profits annually.
- Gender Equity in Architecture: The architecture profession has identified a lack of gender diversity as a common concern, especially in leadership positions. Bruner/Cott has a balanced comprehensive workforce in this regard except for current senior leadership and pays women and men the same for equal work. The firm is committed to supporting gender diversity at all levels by erasing the notion of gendered professional roles, supporting work-life balance, and creating professional development opportunities for all.
The Living Building Challenge 3.0’s Equity Petal requires at least one team member to have a JUST label, placing more emphasis on social justice and equity.