Interesting video series on Sustainability in farming

Today’s post is about a really interesting video series on Sustainability in relation to farming. In this series there are six different episodes. So a lot of interesting information.

For some reason I did not really look into the relationship of farming to sustainability in detail before. This is why this series came in very handy to get me up to speed on the topic.

These are the links to the first five parts of the series. I decided to embed the last part of the series as I found it very useful as a summary and conclusion video for the overall topic.

Parts of the video series: Part 1 / Part 2 / Part 3 / Part 4 / Part 5

Making a difference: What will change in your life for 2012?

The annual changing leaf season always reminds of the changing times. It seems that Mother Nature wants us to all let go of our 2011 ballast, to plan ahead for 2012 and to prepare to change.

I am in the process of changing a lot in my life as well. Nothing drastic, but changes need to happen in order to realize my plans for 2012. In 2011 I pretty much streamlined a lot of operations in my business, on- and offline. This will continue in 2012. More is to be done offline, but streamlining will still be the motto in order to save costs and to be more effective to successfully promote CSR / Sustainability.

Let’s side-track a little here, in order to make an important point.

An example of passion and will power

The most impressive example I came across over the past years of how to change your life to make a difference was a group of three women from the London area. They were all passionate about one thing: Helping dogs which were close to being killed because no one wanted them anymore or their breed was a breed that is perceived as dangerous.

They all had their daily jobs and families, so no time to spare really. But they were so passionate about helping dogs that they simply had to find a way to make a difference as they could not bear seeing perfectly good dogs being put down for no reason. So they worked during the day and rescued dogs during night and the weekend.

This was four years ago. And now, through their sheer commitment and determination, they managed to establish a regional dog rescue charity called Rescue Remedies, which so far has been able to save and rehome close to 1.000 dogs across the UK.

Obviously saving dogs is not for everyone, but my point here is that we all can change our lives if we really want to. Somethings more and sometimes less change is possible and needed to make a difference.

So what can you change in your life this autumn in order to make a difference in 2012?

Video: What drives our desire to behave morally?

This is a very interesting video on TED.com by Paul Zak describing the so called “moral molecule” oxytocin which is according to his research responsible for trust, empathy and a good feeling generally.

Having watched this video, for me, the question is whether this molecule oxytocin might also be an influencing element of peoples’ desire and drive to choose to work in the CSR / Sustainability field in stead of chasing the quick money. I believe it is. What do you think?

The AA1000SES (2011) – Developed by stakeholders for stakeholders

Today’s post is about the exciting news that the AA1000SES (2011) Stakeholder Engagement Standard has been published today. Countless experts from across the globe provided feedback and helped to revise the standard over the course of the past 2.5 years!

This is an important development for the CSR / Sustainability field in my view as the standard provides extremely useful guidance on stakeholder engagement and because it is the first standard to be published under a Creative Commons license and not under the umbrella of an organization, for-profit or NGO.

It is the first genuine standard for stakeholders developed by stakeholders.

This is the full press release below and a link to download the full standard here: AA1000SES (2011) or visit the website AA1000SES (2011) website for more information and to leave a comment.

Full press release:

The Technical Committee responsible for the development of the new AA1000SES (2011) international Stakeholder Engagement Standard is very pleased to announce its release.

The AA1000SES (2011) has been developed in consultation with and has been welcomed by practitioners, policy and operational researchers, civil society and business leaders and representatives from other standards bodies.

The AA1000 Stakeholder Engagement Standard provides a basis for designing, implementing, evaluating and assuring the quality of stakeholder engagement.  It has been designed to be multi-purpose, not just for sustainable development, and can be used by businesses, civil society, public bodies and multi-stakeholder networks and partnerships.

Anne Pattberg (disclosure: yes this is my wife!) from the Technical Committee states: “The Technical Committee would like to thank all stakeholders who have over the last two and a half years contributed to the extensive revision of this standard by attending workshops in more than 20 countries and participating through a variety of other virtual engagement mechanisms.”

The AA1000 SES (2011) provides guidance for continuous improvement, recognizing different levels of practice and can be used as a stand-alone standard or as an integral element of other standards and guidelines (e.g. AA1000AS, GRI, ISO26000,  UNGC, OECD, IFC). The AA1000SES (2011) is relevant to micro-level engagements as well as macro-level engagements on major societal concerns and applies to businesses, civil society, public bodies and multi-stakeholder networks and partnerships. It also supports developments in other areas such as quality management, transparency, reporting and governance.

We would like to take this opportunity to thank all the organizations and individuals, including the past Standards Board and secretariat, as well as the Technical Committee and the many supporting stakeholders who have contributed so much to this international body of knowledge.

About AA1000SES

Originally published as an exposure draft in 2005, the AA1000SES is an open-source framework for designing, implementing and communicating the stakeholder engagement process as well as assuring its quality. This new edition takes into account feedback from an extensive piloting program, ongoing research into evolving practice and broad-based international engagement.

Note:

AA1000SES (2011) is made available under the stewardship of the AA1000SES Technical Committee to ensure its availability to all stakeholders and to acknowledge its ownership and creation by a large and diverse community of organizations and individuals. It is for use by all stakeholders. The intellectual property is protected by a Creative Commons copyright.

The future governance of the AA1000SES (2011) will follow the March 2011 agreement between the AA1000SES Technical Committee and the then secretariat. The Technical Committee looks to the AA1000 Interim Standards Board (ISB) and the AA1000 User Group to cooperate to advance a governance for the AA1000 series that can rise to today’s sustainability challenges and provide a focal point for the continued pooling of international expertise.

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Please share this exciting news with your network and feel free to download the standard from the AA1000SES (2011) website.

My latest Google Chrome extensions

Google Chrome has been a great browser ever since I changed about a year ago and I must say that I will most likely not go back to Firefox any time soon. Today I want to provide you with additional Google Chrome extensions I am using at the moment.

I am using more extensions then listed here so please visit these two previous posts to have a browse through the others not listed below.

Previous Google Chrome posts:

These are my latest favorite Google Chrome extensions:

Chrome Reader – If you are using Google Reader and Chrome this is an indispensible extension in my view. Ever since I started using this little helper I am reading so many more interesting blog posts and it has helped me immense to clean up my RSS feed lists.

Google Quick Scroll – Google Quick Scroll points you to the exact position on the page when you click on the search result in your Google search. This tool safes me so much time each day when doing specific research. A win-win!

Share on Google+ Button – An essential tool for using Google+ these days. If you actively share information on Google+, will this tool make it so much easier.