Brussels Expo

Brussels Expo


On 30 November Trends presents the first Trends Impact Awards, the most prestigious awards for companies that create sustainable value for our society with their projects.

Which companies really have a positive impact in terms of ecology, circular economy, diversity & inclusion, well-being, digitalisation or resilience?

During the unique gala evening of the Trends Impact Awards, you will learn who, after a thorough analysis and deliberation of all the nominations received of all the nominations received, and meet the inspiring leaders and entrepreneurs behind these impactful companies.


  • An assessment of the organisation’s sustainability efforts.
  • A complete dossier compiled by PwC based on sound methodology and substantiated criteria founded on scientific research by Antwerp Management School.
  • Advice and tips to improve your score in the coming years and become eligible for one of the Awards.
  • The chance to win one of the Trends Impact Awards, plus editorial coverage in Trends magazine.
  • For all organisations whose nomination is withheld, the prestigious Trends Impact Label which you can feature in all corporate communication and promotion.


The Trends Impact Awards are Belgium’s most prestigious awards and aim to recognise organisations who are implementing (or have implemented) strategies which generate a positive impact and create sustainable value.

Not one but several Trends Impact Awards for equally impactful organisations. The broad consensus towards ESG criteria and SDG goals makes it hard for companies to stand out in every one of the categories. Yet we still find inspiration across different domains in many of our Belgian businesses.


Large companies are not the only one who are eligible for the Trends Impact Awards. Small businesses and SMEs can also win one of the awards. For each category, a distinction is made between SME’s and large organisations.

Discover the different categories. 7 categories for 7 prizes

Does your company have a sustainable project or initiative?

The Trends Global Impact Award

Are you proud of it? Want to let it know? To establish your credibility, participate in the Trends Impact Awards, a prestigious annual award that will be authoritative in Belgium and internationally. Who knows, your company may win the prestigious Trends Global Impact Award or one of the 6 other awards on November 30!

In order to be able to analyze as many inspiring projects and cases as possible, in addition to the Trends Global Impact Award for the most sustainable company with the highest score in all categories, we also award a Trends Impact Award per category.
These categories are intended to stand the test of time, be future-proof, and are compiled based on academic research conducted by AMS and Professor Wayne Visser.
Follow with us the 6 steps of an integrated and impactful company and ask yourself how your company answers these questions.



The linear economy creates pollution, waste and has devastating effects on our natural environment. We need a regenerative economy that restores these damaged natural ecosystems. This can be done by focusing on ecosystem services and stimulating biodiversity. Ecosystem services are the services that a healthy ecosystem provides to society, and they are indispensable for our economy. For example, drinking water, good soil or the pollination by bees that is necessary for all kinds of crops.

We are looking for projects that restore natural ecosystems, such as water purification, reforestation, rewilding or regenerative agriculture, or that improve biodiversity so that bee populations become healthier.


Example projects

ArcelorMittal, the Ministry of Economy and SUDCAL have officially launched on January 11 an innovative project to recycle the heat generated by the plant’s facilities to feed the urban heating network of the Belval district.

This project was initiated by ArcelorMittal and is part of the sustainable development approach implemented by the Group in Luxembourg. It is reflected in various initiatives to reduce the electricity consumption of the facilities, reduce natural gas consumption, save the water needed for cooling the facilities, and recycle and recover steel by-products. This initiative was supported immediately and unreservedly by the Ministry of Economy and by SUDCAL.

The solution consists in using the fumes coming out at about 400°C from the reheating furnace of the sheet piles rolling mill, to heat water via an exchanger before injecting it into the heating network of the neighboring district. Most common environment related projects relate to Net Zero promises and actions to reduce GHG emissions by working around energy switch (turning to solar or wind energy, reducing the use of energy or re-using energy).

In real estate developments we witness the shift from environmental neutral buildings in terms of energy and water use towards environmental positive buildings, generating more energy and water than the building consumes and hence share the excess with the neighboring ecosystems

More info

Rapid population growth put a strain on Barrie’s water and wastewater infrastructure, forcing the city to consider expensive new supply options and infrastructure development.

Barrie’s conservation plan focused on replacing inefficient showerheads and toilets.

Barrie was able to save an average of 55 liters (14.5 gallons) per person per day. The reduction in wastewater flows enabled Barrie to defer an expensive capital expansion project. Water conservation efforts saved an estimated $17.1 million (Canadian dollars) in net deferred capital expenditures.

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Ammonia, which does not emit CO2 when burned, is expected to become a next-generation fuel as it contains properties ideally suited for the hydrogen economy.

Building on its long experience and leading position within global ammonia production, logistics and trade, Yara has recently established the Yara Clean Ammonia unit working towards making carbon-free food production to capture growth opportunities in emission-free fuel for shipping and power, carbon-free food production and ammonia for industrial applications.

More info



Business models that deplete the earth’s natural resources through overconsumption or waste are linear. In the circular economy, products are designed in such a way that there is no waste. At the end of their useful lives, their components become raw materials for new products. Another example is biodegradable plastic that is converted into renewable energy.

We are looking for projects that create these kinds of closed economic circles, in which the economic activity no longer has a negative impact externally and in which products and materials are continuously reused. These projects contribute to renewable energy, reusable raw materials or the disappearance of waste.


Example projects

Can waste be seen as a solution rather than a problem? We think so. That’s why we’ve created ‘TOO GOOD TO WASTE’ our new limited edition washing up liquid made using 25% waste ingredients left over from the beer brewing process (ethanol + water). Bottled in 100%post-consumer recycled plastic in our TRUE Zero Waste Certified factory. Waste is an issue that’s bigger than just plastic, and we hope you’ll agree that while only a small step, it’s a positive start.

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The longer you can keep your phone, the smaller its environmental footprint becomes. So we design for longevity, easy repair, and modular upgrades. Our goal is to make your phone’s hardware last as long as possible and to provide the support to keep its software up to date. From the battery to the camera modules, all Fairphone modules are available in our shop and we freely provide easy-to-follow repair tutorials to everyone.

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Knauf Insulation in Germany has developed a scheme to take back scrap Mineral Wool from construction sites and recycle it.

The new system — ‘RESULATION’ — is designed to maximise resource use through recycling and contribute to minimising the environmental impact of construction waste. In the past, businesses had no choice except to collect off-cuts of insulation and give it to waste disposal companies.

Now thanks to RESULATION it is possible to transform Rock Mineral Wool residue into ‘recycling bricks’ which can be used in the production of new Rock Mineral Wool insulation boards and allow Glass Mineral Wool scrap to be transformed into ceiling tiles. For customers the RESULATION process is simple. After an order is placed, businesses are given empty RESULATION bags, which are collected when filled and sent for recycling.

More info



The sharing economy revolves around collaborative creation, production, distribution and consumption. The focus lies on dealing efficiently with raw materials and goods by sharing products or services. As a result, CO2 emissions are reduced and progress is made towards more sustainable products. Transparency is important. Classic examples of the sharing economy are car-sharing platforms, meal suppliers, crowdfunding or repair cafés. However, the sharing economy also means striving for inclusivity, increasing diversity and ensuring that people with lower incomes also have access to quality services.
We are looking for projects that incorporate inclusivity and promote diversity. Companies who share products with others encourage greater social interaction between people, creating more trust in our society.


Example projects

Diversity & Inclusion: Mastercard consistently makes it into the Top 10 of DiversityInc’s 50 Best Companies for Diversity They believe that “diversity is what drives better insights, better decisions, and better products. It is the backbone of innovation”. A particularly unique project that Mastercard has executed over the past few years involves getting older employees in the company more active when it comes to social media. To address generational barriers, “YoPros” BRG (the Young Professionals Business Resource Group) offers a one-on-one ‘Social Media Reverse Mentoring’ program to older employees who want to become familiarised with the platforms.

Conducted a quantitative and qualitative study to uncover the potential barriers for the participation of women in NATO IS with a focus on senior management level and executive leadership positions. Conclusions and recommendations were consolidated in an insightful report.

Diversity & Inclusion: Although gender, generations and sexual orientation are all part of the diversity hiring strategy at Sodexo, they state that “gender balance is our business”, and their mission is to make it everyone else’s business too. 55% of all staff members in Sodexo are women – that’s up from just 17% in 2009. 58% of the members on the board of directors are female and the company runs 14 Gender Balance Networks worldwide. What they have found is that when there is an optimal gender balance within an organisation, employee engagement increases by 4 percentage points, gross profit increases by 23% and brand image strengthens by 5 percentage points.

As part of Invitae’s D&I efforts in 2020, they created activities to support community and allyship, including launching seven employee resource groups (ERGs) within in six months and spearheading community table talks which are a series of informal conversations hosted by ERGs to foster community and allyship among employees and discuss relevant issues.

Invitae’s newly launched ERGs:

  • Woman in Tech
  • Latinx
  • Pride (Rainbow Connection)
  • Peer Soul Support (Mental wellness)
  • Black Genetics
  • Veterans In Genetics
  • Aznpac & Friends (Asian and Pacific Islander)



The welfare economy helps to ensure that people live healthier lives, feel happier, and in short, can enjoy a good life. This reduces dissatisfaction and polarisation in society. For example, projects tackling the problem of burn-out, technology that ensures that people can live a long and healthy life, healthy food, or innovative ideas that help to restore human dignity. The traditional growth of GDP is often one-sided and does not necessarily benefit the collective well-being in society. Oil production or arms dealing may increase the GDP, but they also cause damage.

We are looking for companies who make everything possible and who maintain our welfare economy by connecting growth in GDP with contributions to a fair society within the boundaries of our planet.


Example projects

Growing Minds connects farmers, distributors, and school food leaders to ensure students have access to healthy local food. Over the years, we have developed tried-and-true resources for bringing local food into cafeterias and engaging students in making healthy eating choices. Serving local food in school cafeterias can sometimes be a daunting task. We encourage schools to start where they can, such as featuring one local product a month.

More info

Despite being a large, established company, Unilever has always been very forward-thinking when it comes to its work programmes. The consumer goods brand has long allowed its employees to work from anywhere, making them a great flexible workspace case study. They do not even ask employees to work a regular 9-5 day. Instead, they get the freedom to complete their work at any time that suits them. Whether they want to work from home, a flexible office space, or a completely different country, Unilever supports them with adaptable work programmes. They also all have access to the technology they need to keep work standards high. This flexibility has been made successful through the implementation of flexible office space. This helped staff adapt to the new ways of working seamlessly. Alongside these arrangements, staff can also take part in job-sharing, reduced hours, and other examples of flexible working arrangements to help them to prioritise their work-life balance.

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A New Delhi-based feminine hygiene products maker Wet & Dry Personal Care started to allow its women employees to take two days off during their menstrual cycles. “Based on medical recommendations, we are offering two days off a month for our women employees. This is to ensure that they are comfortable and don’t have to endure pain while in office,” W&D chief executive officer Pankaj Garg said. The women can also avail of leave with pay and work from home, the company said.

More info



Examples of digitalisation that brings people together include online classes for large groups of students, but also artificial intelligence or blockchain technology. Technology connects people. When the coronavirus pandemic erupted, children could continue to attend classes at home, employees could continue to meet digitally, and people could stay connected with their family and friends. Technology allows better reconciliation of our professional and private lives, better involvement in policy as citizens, and the co-creation of products together with companies.

We are looking for companies that use digitalisation to connect people and in doing so are gradually taking society to a more efficient, but at the same time more connected level.


Example projects

For spraying and spreading there is a multiplicity of innovative machinery available today that utilises modern control and regulation technology. This “more” precision on the one side means “less” cost on the other, with the ability to use less fertilisers, pesticides and seed yet still maintaining or even improving yield potential that bit more. The economic advantages, that make for a fast recuperation of any machinery investment, have the added advantage of bringing the potential to help, yet further, in the protection of the environment and also to reduce the stress on the driver.

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The people of Alginet, a small town in eastern Spain, are paying less for their electricity. Households reduced their electricity bills by an average of 12 % over 2012, while large, commercial consumers saved 58 %.
That’s because an EU-funded project, NOBEL, persuaded them to install smart electricity meters, which provided them with real-time information about their energy consumption via a website and smart-phone application.The increased knowledge and awareness of their electricity usage led people to reduce their consumption, said Lola Alacreu, the project coordinator.‘It is now easier for them to save energy,’ she said. ‘Campaigns are now needed to raise awareness about the economic advantages of using smart meters.’

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Much more than a carpooling platform, Karos is a smart mobile application. It allows you to share your regular trips and organize yourself at the last minute or in advance. Karos is a new mode of transport, it’s dynamic carpooling.

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DOES YOUR ORGANISATION SUPPLY PRODUCTS AND SERVICES that prevent or quickly overcome crises?


Insurance, prevention-oriented healthcare or storm surge barriers to avoid spring tide damage are just three examples of how you can reduce the risk in society. In short, these are projects that allow people to quickly regroup in the event of an unforeseen disaster, like a financial crisis, storm or energy crisis. These projects generate a greater resilience in society, allowing people to limit the damage in the event of a natural disaster, a virus or any other problem, and return to normal life. Climate adaptation is another example. Technology or infrastructure which helps a region cope with the consequences of global warming also reduces the human impact.
We are looking for organisations who apply technology to boost resilience and ‘resistance’ to crises and their general impact.


Example projects

Sustainable Horizons cocoa and chocolate products are sold by Barry Callebaut with a premium used to help improve the livelihoods of cocoa farmers and their communities. These premiums go to the Cocoa Horizons Foundation to fund cocoa sustainability activities such as farmer coaching and support; cocoa and non-cocoa seedling distribution; and community development, in a transparent and externally verified process. The Cocoa Horizons Foundation serves as a platform for chocolate companies and other contributors to invest in sustainable cocoa. It relies on expert partners like Barry Callebaut to implement the sustainability activities.

  • Replacing sugar made from corn and wheat with sugar coming from municipal and wood waste: securing supply for the next generation and at a better price point
  • Floating farm: a dairy farm in the port of Rotterdam built on a boat (cows on a boat), delivering milk and yoghurt to the city center with electric vehicles
  • 3D printing spare parts instead of flying in rush order pieces
  • Solving single points of failure in the supply chain to mitigate impacts caused by large external events such as pandemics, supply chain incidents (blocked ships), sanctions or warfare.

More info

Covid-19 has severely affected the residents of a village in Gopalganj district of Bangladesh, who have lost their sources of income due to the impact of Covid19 on tourism. They suffer from a number of serious diseases, due to a complete lack of hygiene and non-availability of clean water. My project uses the SDGs to create a local circular economy in the village, educating them about sanitation, waste disposal, conservation of their water resources, hygiene and the importance of hand washing to prevent Covid and other infections, thereby building their resilience to the impacts of Covid 19 by improving health and employment, while regenerating the local biodiversity and environment.

The impact metrics are:

  1. Sustainable agriculture training provided to 94 males
  2. Sustainable Poultry training provided to 113 females
  3. Six Environmental education workshops held for 161 children
  4. Agriculture output from the village (Rice, Lentil, vegetables ) 40% output feeds all the villagers, 60% provides revenue generation
  5. Poultry output by women : 40% of eggs produced for village consumption providing nutrition, 60% for revenue generation
  6. Sanitation: zero public defecation, 100% usage of sanitary napkins by women, zero waste dumping in river
  7. Permanent Clean water source: Deep bore tube well installed, all 94 families provided with filters in their homes
  8. Rainwater harvesting solution implemented

More info


19 May – 7 July 2022

Online qualification

Interested organisations can complete an online questionnaire here. The qualification includes:

  • Details of the applicant and the organisation
  • Some details of the project that is being submitted and its impact today and in the future
  • Some additional Yes/No questions about the company’s attitude and organisation regarding sustainability.

The qualification involves a fee of € 150 Free during the launch period per case.

25 july – 29 july 2022

Jury / Selection of Nominees for the Deep Dive

A group of experts is appointed for each of the categories. The groups of experts evaluate each submitted ‘qualification’ and select the projects and organisations who will pass to the next stage of ‘deep-dive’ screening. Organisations and projects which are not selected will receive appropriate feedback.

1st August – 15 September 2022

Live Deep Dive Screening

Organisations nominated for the deep dive will be consulted individually by PwC’s experts to give a thorough explanation of their project and initiatives for more sustainability.
15 - 21 September 2022

Jury / Selection of Nominees for the portraits in Trends

Each one of the deep dives results in a written report by the PwC experts and this is shared with the organisation during the feedback moment. This report also contains advice for further improvement. Based on these reports the expert groups deliberate once again and decide which organisations will be nominated for each of the categories. A nomination entitles the organisation to feature the title ‘Trends Impact Label – nominee’.

10 November 2022
Presentation of Nominees in Trends

The nominated organisations will be presented in Trends over a number of consecutive weeks.
All other organisations who have not been selected will receive the report of the deep dive together with feedback.

15 November 2022
Final jury and selection of winners

Following the presentation of all nominees in Trends, the group of experts will deliberate one last time and choose the winners of each category.
The winning organisations are entitled to feature the title ‘Trends Impact Label – winner’.

30 November 2022

Trends Impact Awards Ceremony in Brussels

The winners will be announced during the gala on 30 November.

Jury members and members of the expert groups

Amid Faljaoui

Chief editor

Ans De Vos

PhD, Chair Next Generation Work: Creating Sustainable Careers

Benny Debruyne


Camille Delannois


Christoph Vanderstricht

rbr Expert Circular Economy & Sustainable Value Chains | Strategy & Transformation

Christophe Charlot


Hugo Marynissen

PhD, Professor Crisis Governance

Jochen Vincke

Partner, Director in the S&O Industry practice

Kathleen Vangronsvelt

PhD, Assistant Professor Organizational Behavior & HRM

Koen Vandenbempt

PhD, Dean Faculty of Business & Economics

Myrte De Decker


Olivier Mouton


Robin De Cock

PhD, Academic Director Master in Innovation & Entrepreneurship

Roeland Byl


Roy Coppieters

Director, Business Resilience, Continuity & Crisis management

Serafine Vandebuerie

Partner, People & Transformation

Silvia Lenaerts

PhD, Vice rector Valorisation & Development; Founder of Sustainable Energy, Air and Water technology

Steven De Haes

PhD, Dean, Academic Director Executive Master of Enterprise IT Architecture & IT Governance and Assurance

Stijn Fockedey


Wayne Visser

PhD, Chair in Sustainable Transformation, Professor of Integrated Value

Wim Verhoeven

Chief editor


Trends Impact
Qualification Fee

A complete Trends Impact Scan and first (written) feedback from the experts of PwC

€ 150
Free during the launch period

Trends Impact
Deep Dive & Nomination Fee

A complete report including a score determined by PwC.
The option to feature the Trends Impact Awards-label (as a nominee or winner).

  • SME’s and small companies : € 1.000 € 500 (including 1 seat for the Trends Impact gala diner)
  • Large companies: € 2.000

Trends Impact
Gala dinner

Access to the gala evening and dinner

  • Seat: € 325
  • Table of 10 persons: € 2.750


18:00Reception & networking
19:00Academic part in auditorium style including the presentation of the Trends Impact Awards 2022
20:30Gala dinner with tables of 10 people
22:00Open bar & networking

Dress code : business


Wednesday 30 November 2022, as from 6 pm


Brussels Expo


Parking E


€325 (excl. VAT) per person
€2,750 euro (excl. BTW) per table of 10 people

Register now

Mark November 30th 2022 in your calendar and register now your seat for this unique event.

If you have any questions about this, do not hesitate to contact mieke.knabben@roularta.be


Mélanie Cramazou

Project Manager
0476/79 36 28

Michaël Nevejan

Brand Manager Trends
0496/59 14 45

Mieke Knabben

Event Manager
0473/52 49 71


An initiative by
Founding partner
Supported by
With valuable support of


A initiative by
Founding partner
Supported by
With valuable support of

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