Atlanta may not be the first city that comes to mind when you think of sustainability – but perhaps, it should be.

As we celebrate the fifth anniversary of the Ray C. Anderson Center for Sustainable Business at Georgia Tech’s Scheller College of Business, we offer reflections on sustainability developments at the Center and in Atlanta at large.

One of Atlanta’s most significant moments for achievement in sustainability came in 2016, when the city was selected from among 1,000 global applicants to join the Rockefeller Foundation’s 100 Resilient Cities initiative.

Speaking of “Green” building, the GreenBuild conference will come to Atlanta in 2019, and headline attractions are certain to include Georgia Tech’s Kendeda Building for Innovative Sustainable Design and the Mercedes-Benz Stadium.

Atlanta-based transnationals have also developed strong sustainability programs: The Coca-Cola Company is gearing up to tackle its World Without Waste goals here in Atlanta and internationally; UPS continues to roll out sustainable urban delivery solutions both here and abroad; and Delta Air Lines, among many other corporate sustainability initiatives, recently became the first participant in the Corporate Sustainability Program Executive Council here at the Center.

The CSP will facilitate corporate/academic thought leadership across four strategic areas – Circular Economy, Carbon-Conscious Business, Social Performance, and Sustainability Innovation & ESG Leadership – through activities such as joint research, workshops on sustainability topics, and guest lectures.

In 2016, the Center helped found Serve-Learn-Sustain, an Institute-wide initiative to equip Georgia Tech students around the theme “Creating sustainable communities.” In addition to establishing a minor in sustainable cities and a diverse undergraduate curriculum, SLS also co-led the formation of RCE Greater Atlanta.