September 2013




I am pleased to send you the seventh newsletter on the activities of the Centro de Estudios para el Lujo Sustentable [Center for Studies on Sustainable Luxury], which mission is to assist luxury companies in their transition to sustainability, encouraging sustainable business practices across all areas of the organization and its supply chain. This means taking a broader picture to ensure that social and environmental issues are completely integrated into the decision-making process.

In this issue, I would like to present some conceptual guidelines on sustainable jewelry and to make some comments on the third edition (2013) of the Best Performance in Sustainable Luxury in Latin America Award, as well as to provide information about the Dialogue “Relating Luxury, Sustainability, and Biodiversity". 

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Best regards,

Miguel Angel Gardetti
Center for Studies on Sustainable Luxury

Contact information:
(54 11) 4702-0242

Third Edition -2013- of Best Performance in Sustainable Luxury in Latin America Award.

The purpose of this Award -organised by the Center for Study of Sustainable Luxury- is to acknowledge the culture and practice of sustainable luxury in the private sector to civil society organisations and mass media professionals. For this reason, a recognised jury selects the winners strictly based on their merits, which –on the occasion of this third edition and to date- is made up of well-known international personalities in the subject area:

María Eugenia Girón (author of the books “Inside Luxury,” published in 2009 and “Diccionario sobre Lujo y Responsabilidad” (Dictionary on Luxury and Accountability) published in 2012. Besides she was the winner of the Best Spanish Business Woman in 2004 due to her performance in Carrera y Carrera).

Dana Thomas (author of The New York Times bestseller: “How Luxury Lost Its Luster;” she has also written for the New York Times Magazine, The New Yorker, Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar).

Susana Saulquin (Latin American referent in fashion sociology and author of several books, such as, “Historia de la Moda Argentina” [History of Argentine Fashion] and “La Muerte de la Moda, el día después” [The Death of Fashion, the Day After]).

Christina Dean, Founder & CEO, Redress. She has been extensively recognised for her work, including a mention as one the Most Influential Women in 2010 in environmental issues by the US online magazine Coco Eco.

Ana Laura Torres (who contributed to the creation and development of the Center for Studies on Sustainable Luxury and the Center for Sustainable Textile which she has been coordinating since March, 2011).

Prof. Jem Bendell, who authored the report called “Deep Luxury” on luxury brand responsibility prepared for the World Wildlife Fund –WWF- (UK).

Eduardo Escobedo (Project Director of Responsible Ecosystems Sourcing Platform Collaborating Centre on Sustainable Consumption and Production based in Germany which includes fashion and luxury).


Awards will be given in these categories:

The best sustainable luxury clothing and accessory company

The best sustainable luxury jewelry or watch company

The best sustainable luxury tourism company (including luxury hotels)

The best sustainable luxury beauty company

The best sustainable luxury breakthrough/innovative company

Recognition to sustainable luxury track record

The best media professional/journalist in sustainable luxury

The best sustainable luxury project outside Latin America.


At present, the award includes 30 people nominated by an international panel of experts. These companies/organisations or people are from –in alphabetical order-: Argentina (4), Belgium (1), Brazil (3), Colombia (1), Chile (3), Denmark (1), Ecuador (2), Spain (2), Italy (1), Mexico (1), Monaco (1); Peru (1), Switzerland (1), United Kingdom (5), USA (3), and Venezuela (1). Even though many head offices are located outside Latin America, their operations have a (positive) social and environmental impact on the region. Moreover, this third edition includes the category “Best Project outside Latin America”.

The award ceremony will be held in Villa Ocampo on October 31st at 2:45 p.m. This mansion was the home of the well-known writer, essayist, translator and intellectual Victoria Ocampo. Throughout the 20th Century, this house was the meeting point of some of the best intellectuals and artists worldwide, Rabindranath Tagore, André Malraux, Waldo Frank, Gabriela Mistral, Igor Stravinsky, Graham Greene, Jorge Luis Borges, Le Corbusier and Albert Camus, just to name a few. Victoria Ocampo was an active promoter of cultural diversity. Before she died, she donated her house to the UNESCO, United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation, “so that it helps, in a live and creative spirit, promote, study, experience and develop cultural, literature, art and social communication activities.”




Dialogue “Relating Luxury, Sustainability, and Biodiversity”.

The above Dialogue will take place prior to the award ceremony. As a frequent user of and beneficiary from biodiversity, the luxury industry has both the opportunity and the responsibility to become increasingly involved in biodiversity management and conservation. Biodiversity creates an opportunity for companies to innovate and evolve by offering a source of raw materials, technology, and business opportunities. Unfortunately, the relationship is not always mutually beneficial. Raw material supply and extraction may cause a decline in population and damage to the ecosystem.

This dialogue –with the participation of Eduardo Escobedo and Miguel Angel Gardetti, moderated by Ana Laura Torres- will provide a framework to discuss the need to redefine the current luxury industry to become more sustainable. Thus, luxury companies will gain insight into the role companies can play in promoting and supporting biodiversity preservation through their internal operations and both global and regional supply chains.




Sustainable Jewerly.

Consumers’ concerns about ethically obtaining jewels and precious metals have led luxury jewelry brands to redefine excellence in business. Therefore, corporate responsibility needs to be integrated as a core business function, not only to address these issues, but also to promote more responsible aspirations in the entire sector as well as in society. María Eugenia Girón –member of the Advisory Board of the Center for Studies on Sustainable Luxury- holds that a good manager should be humble and intelligent enough to continually analyse the strategy so that it can be adapted and even changed. This is because the environment is in a state of rapid changes and only those that can anticipate future movements will make progress, and this is particularly relevant for the luxury industry that needs to anticipate trends and identify new opinion leaders. Determination and flexibility are advantages in an industry ruled by arrogance.

Let us analyse an interesting example. Oro Verde is the first program of its kind in the world. The purpose of this initiative is to reverse the devastating damages caused by large-scale mining exploitation in a unique ecosystem like the Chocó Biogeographic Region, in Colombia. This project promotes compliance with environmental and social criteria for gold and platinum extraction among traditional mining communities. These precious metals are manually extracted by African-Colombian families that have owned the land for generations. And even though there are more efficient methods to extract gold in mines using chemicals, the truth is that, for these communities, the Chocó ecosystem is not a mine, but their homeland. Oro Verde buys these metals from certified families for a surcharge. Oro Verde supports the production chain from the mine to the market by offering these families technical assistance to improve their livelihood, while developing markets for these metals in Germany, Canada, Colombia, Denmark, USA, France, The Netherlands, Japan, United Kingdom, and Sweden, among other countries. It charges a premium on the international price of gold and platinum and, with the resulting surplus, it set up a community social investment fund that belongs to the producers and is used for mutually-agreed local development projects. Moreover, Oro Verde led the creation of the Alliance for Responsible Mining, which develops a global certification system for responsible traditional and small-scale mining as per the Fair Trade principles. This new international standard certifies with Fairtrade and Fairmined those small-scale mining groups that comply with certification criteria.




Centro de Estudios para el Lujo Sustentable Copyright © 2011 All rights reserved. The content of this Newsletter is protected by copyright so it cannot be electronically reproduced or processed, copied and/or disclosed without the prior authorization in writing of the Centro de Estudios para el Lujo Sustentable.


Centro de Estudios para el Lujo Sustentable

Av. San Isidro 4166, PB "A"

(C1429ADP) Buenos Aires


(54 11) 4702-0242



Third Edition -2013- of Best Performance in Sustainable Luxury in Latin America Award.

Sustanable Jewelry.





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