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- Saturday, 17 November 2012 | Submitted by Scott Perret
In August of this year, nine people met outside the tiny village of Tarm, Denmark at an old, rambling farmhouse with a straw roof and dusty beds. Many colors of the FSSD practitioner rainbow were represented there. After three days of shared meals and intense process beneath the heavy beams of the centuries-old house, what emerged were the seeds of a vision for a more open, inclusive and intentional community of change-makers around the FSSD. Even more foundationally, we had stumbled upon the soil for those seeds: trust in one another.
- Friday, 16 November 2012 | Submitted by Berend Aanraad
No, we’re not talking about the prioritizing questions from the D-step in backcasting, but the name of one of the new offices of The Natural Step and to be more specific; the one in The Netherlands. It was exactly three years ago that Freek van der Pluijm (MSLS’08) and I first met in the City of Eindhoven during the opening of one of my new projects to build the business case for sustainability. We immediately started sharing our passion for this wonderful Framework from Sweden and discussing what the future could hold, if a whole country (The Netherlands is about 1/230th the size of the US, with 17 million inhabitants) would adopt a unifying framework for sustainability? How could we be more strategic about strategic sustainable development in The Netherlands. After teaming up a couple of times with Jonas Oldmark (TNS Sweden) and Karl-Henrik Robert to find some funding opportunities for the Real Change program (forerunner of the Alliance for Strategic Sustainable Development) in The Netherlands, Freek and I decided to go ahead and start up a Dutch NGO called The Flexible Platform.
- Friday, 16 November 2012 | Submitted by Brendan Seale
All of us at The Natural Step Canada are very pleased to have been recognized recently for our approaches to addressing complex social and environmental challenges. Last week, we received a 2012 Corporate & Community Social Responsibility (CCSR) Award in the "Social Innovation Enterprise" category as an entrepreneurial charitable organization that deploys creative social processes to drive innovation toward sustainable outcomes.
The term "social innovation" refers to both social processes that are innovative, but also to innovations that serve a social purpose. Our colleagues at Social Innovation Generation are a collaborative partnership that does pioneering work in this space in Canada, fostering a wide variety of initiatives to address social and ecological challenges.
- Wednesday, 14 November 2012 | Submitted by Kelly Hawke Baxter
Over the past few years The Natural Step International (TNSI) has been undergoing an extensive organizational transition, in order to trade in its license model for a more open and inclusive membership structure, and to reinvent itself and its role in the world for greater impact.
That transition period is now complete and The Natural Step International has relaunched as a new international secretariat, based in London England, with a bold new strategic plan with a new purpose and core strategies, and a new secretariat team. At the centre of all our efforts is a mission to accelerate collective impact for change towards a thriving, vibrant society that operates within nature’s limits.
- Imagination Designs Europe – FSSD Informs Eindhoven’s Bid to be the Cultural Capital of Europe for 2018Tuesday, 13 November 2012 | Submitted by Freek van der Pluijm
I am pleased to share that on October 25, The Flexible Platform (the Dutch representative of TNS) viewed the presentation of the Eindhoven 2018 Bidbook for the Cultural Capital of Europe - "Imagination Designs Europe". The Flexible Platform was able to contribute to the development of this bid, and we are very proud to have the following statement included in the project description:
“Work in the Proeftuin projects will be done in accordance with the sustainability principles of the Framework for Strategic Sustainable Development, an open source, scientifically robust, and widely disseminated framework co-developed by an international NGO called The Natural Step
- Monday, 12 November 2012 | Submitted by Josh Snider
The Natural Step Canada would like to thank the Ottawa Sustainability Fund (OSF) for generously supporting the IMPACT! Sustainability Champions Training program for emering young leaders in Ottawa. Thanks to support from the OSF and our many other program partners, these youth are working hard to transform our community toward sustainability.
While sitting down for lunch a couple of weeks ago I met some terrific people championing a cause we outdoor enthusiasts can truly get behind … sustainability for Ottawa.Thursday, 08 November 2012 | Submitted by Neil McCallum
After operating from a sustainability platform for a number of years, Santropol Roulant, a non-profit in the Plateau neighbourhood of Montreal, questioned their sustainability impacts and decided to look into further actions that would help reduce their ecological footprint.
In 2006 and 2007, The Natural Step helped Santropol Roulant execute a vision and action plan for sustainability which proved to have strong social, environmental and financial payoffs.Thursday, 01 November 2012 | Submitted by Sarah Brooks
Many of the questions we are asked about sustainability strategy focus on implementation: “Yes, we have goals now, but what do we actually DO? How do we change the way people think and help people who are not Green Team members to apply a sustainability lens??”
This is the challenge of moving from the strategic to the operational and building tactical support for everyday work. So how does that happen?
One of the ways we’ve seen this work is through the development of tools that help people to apply a sustainability lens to their work. Here’s how it works:Tuesday, 23 October 2012 | Submitted by Pong Leung
Recently, I spoke on an online dialogue about corporate social responsibility (CSR) in Canada and had an audience member asked me about how business’ CSR investments will be affected by the economic downturn. This great question is one that numerous professionals are concerned with as they move into budget season.
Some recent studies, such as GreenBiz’s State of Green Business Report, show an increased investment in business sustainability initiatives over the past couple of years, in spite of the economic downturn. This flies in the face of conventional (old) thinking that sustainability / CSR initiatives get cut when budgets are tight. However, at the same time, I have talked to some professionals leading sustainability efforts who have seen their available resources decline; so why are there different stories here?Monday, 22 October 2012 | Submitted by Simon Harvey
The kiwi may be a flightless and endangered species of bird – so thank goodness for the silver wings of Air New Zealand.
Sitting on the plane from Vancouver back to Auckland has finally allowed some time to reflect on my whistle-stop and highly enjoyable trip to the Land Of The Red Maple Leaf. The busy TNS Canada team in Ottawa extended a very warm welcome to their kiwi visitor, for which I am so grateful. Despite the numerous Skype calls and telephone meetings over recent times, one quickly realises the intimate benefit of meeting in person. It was a real pleasure to meet the TNS Canada team, and to be received so warmly.