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We are glad to announce that our world-class Distance Course "Introduction to Strategic Sustainable Development" has applications open. Now more than ever it seems essential that in our education and career we step up to understand the complexity of the sustainability challenge and that we find ways to concretely work on solutions, based on a solid, science-based approach. No matter the sector, region of the world, or stage of career in this journey, it seems that a capacity to handle complexity, create positive visions of the future, and work across sectors is a crucial competence to have.
Our distance course has been built with the explicit aim to address these challenges and equip you with relevant knowledge and competence, for the sake of advancing society towards sustainability.
The article Sustainability – Announcing the Future-Fit Business Benchmark written by Bob Willard, a long serving board member of The Natural Step Canada, was originally published on sustainabilityadvantage.com. The Future-Fit Business Benchmark is a project that is co-led by The Natural Step Canada and 3D Investment Foundation.
Ta-dah! As promised in my last blog, Public Draft 1.0 of the Future-Fit Business Benchmark is now available for use and feedback. This free, open-source resource defines science-based, aspirational, sustainability goals for a company that desires to be fit for the future on a scarcer, more crowded, and hotter planet. We invite your feedback on the goals and your ideas on appropriate key performance indicators (KPIs) by which to assess progress toward each goal.
The theme of The Natural Step’s upcoming Accelerate conference is “Collaborating for Sustainability.” Over the past two years, we at The Natural Step have dedicated ourselves to better understanding what it takes to collaborate more effectively across organizations to bring about the kind of breakthrough results that can shift systems toward sustainability. Accelerate will be another chance to learn together on this topic.
One thing we’ve learned is that systems change is unlikely to happen if we only collaborate with our natural allies. Instead, transformative change really does require understanding and working with those whose interests and perspectives are different than our own.
Nowhere is this more evident than in the hyper-polarized debates about Canada’s energy system and response to climate change, arguably our most important sustainability challenge. My observation has been that while many people tend to lament the polarization, we also tend to go back to mostly working in the realms in which we are most comfortable, mostly engaging with people who share our views. What do we miss when we follow these patterns?
A powerful group of sustainability thought leaders and collaborators are mobilizing to meet in Toronto at the 2nd annual Accelerate: Collaborating for Sustainability Conference on June 5-6. Make sure to register now to secure your participation in this distinct gathering.
Written by Simon Goldsmith
Karlskrona, Sweden town square
(photo by Shutterstock)
Applications are open until 15th January 2014, with the 10-month program beginning in late August.
Successful applicants will learn and apply the Framework for Strategic Sustainable Development (FSSD, originally developed by The Natural Step), plus learn and develop key leadership and other core skills and knowledge to enable them to apply strategic sustainability and leadership approaches in almost every area of society.
Written by Dr. Edwin Routledge and Scott Perret
TNS Founder Karl-Henrik Robèrt with some of
the staff and students of the new Masters programme.
This ground-breaking course will select the world’s brightest, most entrepreneurial-minded graduates and equip them with two essential ingredients: firstly, the mind-set and ability to play a key role in building a sustainable world – one that is not only prosperous, but also environmentally stable and socially inclusive; and secondly, hands-on experience, such that they can become entrepreneurial business leaders and inventors.
Like all nations, India is a land of rich cultural
heritage and complex sustainability challenges
(photo by Shutterstock)
In this broad-ranging conversation, Dr. Robèrt shares his perspectives on historical paradigm shifts, what it was that helped Natural Step clients like IKEA, Nike and Interface make radical shifts towards sustainability, the gap between what science knows about sustainability and what the popular media, public and many governments perceive to be true, and the responsibility of highly industrialized nations towards the emerging economies of the world.
Written by Freek van der Pluijm and Scott Perret
Ray Anderson, founder of Interface, Inc.
(photo courtesy of Interface, Inc.)
But why and how has the company managed to be so successful at not just incorporating sustainability, but using it as a platform to drive transformational innovation and profits?
Portions of the text below were taken from the GISR website.
Since the beginning of this year, The Natural Step has been participating alongside many other stakeholders in a global initiative to create a set of sustainability ratings that will become the standard used by big businesses and relied upon by the capital markets as they analyze those businesses.
The ‘green’ or sustainability ratings industry is relatively young. So far there is no clear, single ratings standard that has emerged as the ‘go-to’ standard for businesses to measure themselves against, ratings agencies to use, and capital markets to rely upon as they consider which businesses are most likely to be aligned for success in the future. The Global Initiative for Sustainability Ratings (GISR) seeks to remedy that.
Written by Pong Leung and Scott Perret
The Natural Step’s Canada office is spearheading an exciting initiative to define a set of benchmarks that would allow anyone to determine what a sustainable business looks like.
This would give businesses everywhere clear parameters to wrap around their individual visions of success, allowing them to orient profitable innovations, products, services, operations and business models towards creating greater value for society in ways that are ecologically and socially sustainable.
It would also give rating and ranking agencies a way to evaluate businesses more transparently, in line with a rigorous, science-based set of guidelines. This, in turn, would improve the ability of capital markets as well as consumers and regulatory agencies to see clearly how businesses are doing on their sustainability journeys.