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We believe trust is an essential requirement for sustainable relationships between communities, governments and companies. Without trust, companies cannot grow.

Our Principles

We appreciate the sensitivity of engaging in fragile, conflict-affected and developing contexts and seek to work collaboratively with all partners and stakeholders who share our principles, which are:
  • We emphasize the long-term, constructive benefits of finding mutually beneficial solutions to complex challenges for nurturing the private sector.
  • We believe trust is an essential requirement for sustainable relationships between communities, governments and private sector actors.
  • We use independent, impartial analysis; targeted, comprehensive capacity-building; and, inclusive mediation processes to build trust. Trust, however is only the beginning, not the end of the process.
  • We emphasize that building trust requires consistent attention to relationships, transparency, accountability, communication, respect, and results.
  • We believe off-the-shelf solutions cause more harm than good. Our approaches are carefully tailored to the clients, actors and context at hand.
We assess requests on five essential criteria:
  • Clarity: Expectations must be clear among all actors, and deliverables are explicit.
  • Feasibility: Tasks are undertaken if access to the required actors, materials, and data can be assured, and if the deliverables are achievable within the prescribed timeframe.
  • Social good: Tasks are undertaken if they can reduce conflict and benefit the social, political, economic and/or environmental situation of all actors concerned.
  • Sustainability: We believe strongly in delivering sustainable results and will only participate in projects which hold the potential for long-term success.
  • Do no harm: Tasks are only undertaken if they can be reasonably expected not to cause harm to any persons or any contexts and if the security of TrustWorks personnel will not be jeopardised.
TrustWorks emphasises the importance of evaluation; all interventions are evaluated in order to assess impact and improve future engagements.


  1. Find sustainable solutions to company-community conflicts, which deepen opportunities for long-term collaboration and bring benefits to public, private and civil society actors.
  2. Increase the number, quality and reach of positive impacts of business operations.
  3. Reduce instances and severity of negative impacts of business operations.
  4. Enhance levels of mutual understanding of the respective values, perceptions, interests, and aspirations of companies, communities and state actors.
  5. Build the capacities of senior managers and operational staff to more effectively manage non-technical risk, and build lasting relationships, internally and externally.
  6. Build the capacities of communities and other civil society actors to negotiate effectively with companies.
  7. Create culturally appropriate, accessible and effective grievance mechanisms/avenues for redress, which help channel potentially violent conflict into constructive and more effective processes.
  8. Foster multi-stakeholder dialogues and relationships, especially those which bring together businesses, international organisations, governments and civil society actors – to search for collaborative solutions to challenges affecting businesses and communities and relating to the mandates of international organisations.
  9. Deepen appreciation of the notion that commercial interests are best served by aligning with, and supporting the interests of host communities.
  10. Learn from the experiences, insights and expertise of all stakeholders living and working in complex environments, in order to make those lessons available to, and meaningful for others.