Arup provides a comprehensive environmental and sustainability consultancy service. We have an international track record of excellence spanning many years. From our offices around the world, experienced staff deliver advice at all stages of business and project development. Key skills include Corporate Non-Financial Reporting, Environmental and Sustainability Management, Air Quality, Ecology, Contaminated Land, Waste Management, Landscape Architecture, Water Resources, Noise and Vibration, Archaeology and Built Heritage, Environmental, Social and Health Impact Assessment.

Company details

13 Fitzroy Street , London , W1T 4BQ United Kingdom
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Business Type:
Consulting firm
Industry Type:
Market Focus:
Globally (various continents)
Year Founded:
Over 1000
$100,000,000 US - $1,000,000,000 US

This company also provides solutions for other industrial applications.
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We are an independent firm of designers, planners, engineers, consultants and technical specialists offering a broad range of professional services. Through our work, we make a positive difference in the world. We shape a better world.

Founded in 1946 with an initial focus on structural engineering, Arup first came to the world’s attention with the structural design of the Sydney Opera House, followed by its work on the Centre Pompidou in Paris. Arup has since grown into a truly multidisciplinary organisation. Most recently, its work for the 2008 Olympics in Beijing has reaffirmed its reputation for delivering innovative and sustainable designs that reinvent the built environment.

Arup brings together broad-minded individuals from a wide range of disciplines and encourages them to look beyond the constraints of their own specialisms.

This unconventional approach to design springs in part from Arup’s ownership structure. The firm is owned in trust on behalf of its staff. The result is an independence of spirit that is reflected in the firm’s work, and in its dedicated pursuit of technical excellence.

The power to influence the future of the built environment carries with it a weighty responsibility.

Many of Arup’s projects leave a legacy to subsequent generations: a legacy that outlasts any one individual. With 10,000 projects going on at any one time, Arup is doing the best possible job for current and future generations. Putting sustainability at the heart of its work is one of the ways in which Arup exerts a positive influence on the wider world. Put simply, Arup people are driven to find a better way.

Arup’s independent ownership structure gives conviction a place in its decision-making, alongside the needs of clients and commercial imperatives. The result is clear-sighted, thoughtful decisions about its priorities as a business and as a member of society.

Arup influences many people’s lives through its projects. Shaping a sustainable future – particularly through the urban environment – will be one of the greatest challenges in the 21st century. Arup is rising to the challenge: investing in research, innovating and creating better solutions for its clients and the wider world.

“…our lives are inextricably mixed up with those of our fellow human beings, and that there can be no real happiness in isolation…” Ove Arup, 1970.

A history of thinking ahead

In 1946, philosopher and engineer Ove Arup set up his consulting engineering business in London. In the more than 60 years that have followed, the business has grown into an international consulting firm of unparalleled scope, owned in trust for its employees and using the business principles that Ove Arup first set out – and which he articulated for posterity in 1970 in his forward-looking ‘key speech’.

Right from the start, Arup was known for its close and exceptionally productive collaborations with leading and avant-garde architects. In its first two decades, the firm expanded rapidly, and earned a formidable reputation for devising advanced and economical solutions for buildings – a reputation it still enjoys today.

By 1976, Arup’s reputation had become truly global with the completion of the Sydney Opera House. By this time, the firm had opened offices in Northern Europe, Southern Africa, South East Asia and Australia. Its breadth of expertise was already considerable: this ranged from offshore engineering, acoustics, facades, and specialist skills such as impact, blast, risk and seismic engineering, to relatively-niche areas such as designing transportation containers for nuclear waste.

The firm’s portfolio today is broad and wide-ranging. Many of the world’s most iconic sports stadia are Arup projects – such as Beijing’s Water Cube and Bird’s Nest and the Melbourne Rectangular Stadium.

Arup’s work goes beyond buildings and infrastructure, however. We collaborated with car manufacturers on the design of the SuperLight car, which uses considerably less energy than the petrol equivalent. Post 9/11, Arup developed a business continuity and resilience practice, as well as security management tools that are now used globally. Arup has also developed a range of proprietary computer modeling tools which it sells around the world, as well as innovations such as our SoundLab, an aural-realisation tool with which clients can hear subjectively how different design options perform acoustically – before they are actually built.

Arup now has over 90 offices across Europe, North America, Africa, Australasia and South East Asia. It has tripled in size in the last ten years, and now has over 10,000 people worldwide.

Every Arup project is designed with the future in mind. Arup designers consider future trends such as climate change, as well as how an individual site or its immediate surroundings may be developed in the future. The availability of materials and best practice in sustainability also play a significant part.

Each year, Arup reinvests a share of its profits in research as part of the firm’s pursuit of technical excellence. Some of our research projects are conducted by specialists within Arup; others are collaborations with academic institutions or partnerships with industry.

Arup also invests in strategic global research projects such as the Drivers of Change. Through a series of workshops held all over the world, the Drivers of Change is a programme that explores the most significant future trends affecting our business, and the business of our clients. Its findings directly inform Arup’s direction as a business.

Investing in Arup’s own people is a key part of the firm's approach to business. A rigorous technical training program – as well as training on disciplines such as project management – equips Arup people for the challenges offered by the world’s most exciting projects. The emphasis on training and technical excellence means that Arup continues to attract and retain many of the world’s best engineers and designers.

Arup even rewards exceptional achievement – by individuals in projects and contribution to design engineering as an industry – with an honorary title. Each of the fifteen Arup Fellows are eminent in their fields, and their innovative work sets an inspiring example to others at Arup and beyond.

Diversity of opinion and ideas are highly prized at Arup, whose online skills networks hum with debate and provide a forum for the exchange of ideas and knowledge. With projects all over the world and offices in over 30 countries worldwide, Arup remains a diverse group of individuals from a range of cultural backgrounds. This diversity helps foster the creativity that is Arup’s hallmark.

Arup has a reputation for pioneering innovations and for fresh approaches to age-old challenges. The firm’s creative spark and intellectual independence has been there from its very beginning. These shared values, like the firm’s name, are essentially derived from the beliefs and convictions of the firm’s founder, the engineer and philosopher Ove Arup.

Arup people are driven to discover new ways to turn ideas into tangible reality. This passion is behind many of the world’s iconic architectural, engineering, infrastructure and planning projects. It is also behind the firm's relentless pursuit of technical excellence and willingness to invest in research and innovation.

Its very ownership structure – held in trust on behalf of its employees – ensures that Arup retains its independent spirit. Arup’s operating principles and commitment to sustainability are paramount. These shared values unify Arup people – a formidable and diverse group of individuals; freely exchanging ideas and sharing opinions.

Arup seeks ever better ways to imagine, re-imagine and reshape the built environment.

Arup brings together professionals from diverse disciplines and with complementary skills, on a uniquely global scale. The depth of expertise and the sheer numbers of specialists allow Arup to take on complex, strategic projects that no other firm could have delivered. The UK’s first international high speed railway, High Speed 1, also known as the Channel Tunnel Rail Link, is just one example – completed on time and on budget.

Clients trust Arup’s people to question a vision as well as help to realise it. Arup’s commitment to a sustainable approach to all its projects is both enshrined in a formal sustainability policy and embraced personally by the individuals that together make up the firm. Arup’s ownership structure actively reinforces this approach and holds the firm accountable to its own people for its independent approach, and to its social and corporate responsibility.

Arup has a healthy mix of people with very different perspectives and from many cultures, working together, learning from each other and generously sharing their knowledge and ideas. International team-working is the stuff of everyday life for its people, who take advantage of the skills networks within the firm that allow easy collaboration between colleagues who may be on opposite sides of the world, but are working on the same or similar projects.

Talented people join Arup for the opportunity it provides to work on some of the world’s most exciting projects, to develop a specialism of their own or simply to find their niche. The chance to work with some of the world’s leading experts, the range of professional opportunities, and the support and freedom for innovation means that Arup remains a magnet for many of the world’s most talented engineers and designers.

Arup looks at every project with a fresh perspective, no matter how big or small it may be. The firm supports and promotes in its people a willingness to think laterally. Often, this willingness to take a creative approach produces ideas and concepts that may not have been immediately obvious, but which often deliver the best solutions.

Arup invests heavily in research and development, which informs its approach to projects and keeps it focused on 'future-proofing' its design, as well as best practice now. It also invests in skills networks and facilitates the constant exchange of ideas between its people, no matter where they are based or what discipline they belong to.

The firm’s commitment to sustainability informs the firm’s approach and is at the heart of every project. The firm is acutely aware of the responsibility it has in designing and influencing the built environment, to do the best possible work for current and future generations.

The result is solutions that work for clients and for the people who use them and live or work in and around them.

Arup is owned in trust for the benefit of its employees, so the group enjoys the freedom to invest for the long-term growth rather than chase short-term shareholder returns. That is a great strength of the firm, but it is also backed by a very clear determination to maintain the financial health of the group. As Ove Arup noted in the Key Speech, this is the only way we can remain in a position to follow our mission of shaping a better world.

The latest financial statements to 31 March 2011 demonstrate that Arup remains fully committed to robust and responsible financial management.

Despite tough conditions in some key markets, Arup maintained global income levels (£966.4m), delivered positive net cashflow (£40.9m) and produced solid operating profits (£24.6m).

The results reflect our strengths as a global player and underline the value we deliver for our clients.

Arup is committed to an approach to its work that embodies quality, a concern for the environment, and fair dealings with staff and clients.

Health and safety policy

Arup Group considers health and safety at work to be of fundamental importance. We have always striven to create a humane organisation, where people matter. This clearly applies to our own employees, but it also affects those with whom we collaborate, and for whom we provide our professional skills.

We do not think that health and safety is an imposition. It is part of our design and management process, and properly integrated it will create a better and more economical product.

It is our policy to take into account in all activities the requirements of all relevant health and safety law, and to continuously seek improvement wherever possible and appropriate.

In particular it is our policy to provide adequate time and resources to:

  • Ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, the health, safety, and welfare at work of all employees including temporary and contract staff, and of other persons affected by our actions.
  • Provide such health and safety training, specialist advice, information, instruction, and supervision as may be necessary to personnel at all levels.
  • Provide means of consultation on health and safety matters for all employees, and other persons who may be affected by their acts or omissions.
  • Keep the measures taken to promote health and safety under regular review.
  • Integrate health and safety considerations into our design and business decisions.
  • Set measurable performance targets.
  • Monitor our performance in complying with this policy.

Quality policy

Mission: To shape a better world.
Objectives: To deliver this, the firm aims to:

  • Meet the needs of its clients by providing services of recognised value.
  • Seek continued enhancement of its performance through improved processes.
  • Create conditions where people of high ability are attracted to work in the firm.
  • Achieve local delivery of the firm’s global knowledge and skills, through the provision of networks, supported by appropriate training and facilities
  • Maintain honour and mutual respect in relationships with clients, members of the firm and collaborators.
  • Operating within a management system which meets the requirements of ISO 9001.

Outcome: In meeting these objectives, the firm will:

  • Deliver projects which are recognised for their quality.
  • Provide opportunities for staff to develop rewarding careers.
  • Achieve a performance which will sustain the long-term success of the business.
  • This will result in the firm being known for the excellence and creativity of all that it does for clients and for society at large.

Sustainability policy (including environmental policy)

Mission: To shape a better world.
Objectives: The firm will implement practices that promote economic security, social betterment and environmental stewardship and will strive for continuous improvement of performance in these areas.

To deliver this, the firm aims to:

  • Set a sustainability strategy for the firm.
  • Be a leader in sustainable development in areas relevant to its business.
  • Work with its clients to pursue, promote and develop sustainable business outcomes
  • Promote sustainable practices.
  • Use its skills and influence to improve the built environment and to maintain the integrity and quality of cultural environments.
  • Hold its performance accountable to its staff through objective measurements.
  • Report on its sustainability performance and achievements.
  • Operate within a management system that is registered as meeting the requirements of ISO 14001.

In meeting these objectives, the firm will:

For its core business

  • Comply with legal and other requirements that relate to its environmental aspects.
  • Provide value to clients by building upon its reputation for integrated design and a holistic approach to projects.
  • Deliver projects recognised for their sustainability credentials, in line with client expectations.
  • Evaluate projects with respect to their sustainability risks and opportunities and, where appropriate, work with the client to deliver a more sustainable outcome.
  • Achieve performance that ensures the firm’s economic, environmental and financial viability.

For its people

  • Employ and retain staff who have a high degree of awareness and expertise in sustainability for all disciplines practised.
  • Provide ongoing education and training for all staff on sustainability issues relevant to the firm’s businesses.
  • Support innovative approaches to implementation of sustainability strategies on projects.

For its facilities

  • Endeavour to prevent pollution.
  • Aim to use resources efficiently and to minimise waste, usage of water, energy and other consumables.
  • Implement a strategy to move towards minimising carbon emissions in its operations.
  • Implement a strategy for the firm to move towards sustainable procurement of the goods and services used in its operations.

For its external relationships

  • Engage with organisations that practise sustainability and that enable the exchange of ideas and the promotion of sustainability leadership across its businesses.
  • Implement a strategy to work on community projects that achieve sustainability goals.

Diversity and inclusion

Arup recognises that to produce work of high quality, to maintain our reputation for innovation and creativity and to understand and delight our clients we need to fully embrace the skills, talents and knowledge that only a diverse workforce can deliver.

Code of Practice
As a global organisation, we recognise and respect each others’ differences and strive to build a working environment where our different values and perspectives are actively harnessed to create the best solutions for our equally diverse client base.

We will work to ensure that everyone feels their contribution is valued and their successes are celebrated through our processes and through our training and development.

The diversity and inclusiveness of our workforce is supported by our ethics on sustainability and human rights.

Our employment and recruitment practices will adhere to, and strive to exceed, local legislation wherever we work in the world.

Arup’s principles of diversity and inclusion extend to our clients, our suppliers and all those with whom we choose to work.

Arup’s work in the built environment leaves a significant legacy to subsequent generations. This power, to design and influence the built environment, carries with it a responsibility to do the best possible job for current and future generations.

Putting sustainability at the heart of its projects is one of the ways in which Arup exerts a positive influence on the wider world.

Investing in research and development is another: without such investment, innovation can be stifled. Without the capacity to innovate, our ability to combat the effects of climate change and other global issues would be compromised.

Corporate responsibility is not simply a policy at Arup, but a way of working. The firm’s active engagement with humanitarian and charitable causes is almost a defining feature of Arup people, and has been from the founding of the firm.