Mission & Values

WRI’s mission is to move human society to live in ways that protect Earth’s environment and its capacity to provide for the needs and aspirations of current and future generations.

Our Programs focus on solving seven major challenges at the intersection of environment and human development: Cities, Climate, Energy, Food, Forests, the Ocean and Water. We believe that rapid, systemic transformations in these seven areas are both urgent and achievable. We analyze challenges and solutions through the lenses of our four Centers of Excellence: Finance, Economics, Business and Equitable Development. 

Our Values


Honesty, candor and openness must guide our work to ensure credibility and to build trust.

  • We encourage examination of our methods, analyses, and conclusions. Learn more about our research review procedures.
  • We share information and ideas with our colleagues and partners.
  • We recognize all who have contributed to our work.


To lead change for a sustainable world, we must be creative, forward-thinking, entrepreneurial, and adaptive.

  • We are willing to risk failure to achieve substantial impact. We nurture and reward new ideas and excellence in pursuing them.
  • We reinvigorate our own ideas and approaches through continuous learning.


We believe that change in human behavior is urgently needed to halt the accelerating rate of environmental deterioration.

  • We seek the greatest impact by responding swiftly, decisively, and strategically to opportunities and challenges.
  • We work on issues that matter where we believe we can make a unique difference.


Our effectiveness depends on work that is uncompromised by partisan politics, institutional or personal allegiances, or sources of financial support.

  • We take pride in the independence of our ideas and work.
  • We convey to partners and funders our commitment to unbiased judgment.


Our relationships are based on the belief that all people deserve respect.

  • We encourage diversity of experience, culture, ideas, and opinions among our staff and partners.
  • We seek to ensure and to recognize that each of us can take responsibility and create opportunities.
  • We help each other to reach our fullest potential.
  • We treat others with fairness regardless of their views on our work.