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What if your job didn’t control your life? Brazilian CEO Ricardo Semler practices a radical form of corporate democracy, rethinking everything from board meetings to how workers report their vacation days (they don’t have to). It’s a vision that rewards the wisdom of workers, promotes work-life balance — and leads to some deep insight on what work, and life, is really all about. Bonus question: What if schools were like this too?
Worker cooperatives are a powerful tool for economic and community development. This resource describes their role in creating a more just economy. It provides an overview of the benefits of the cooperative form, with examples of existing cooperatives and quotes from worker-owners. The resource also describes current initiatives to develop cooperatives by nonprofits, as well as government initiatives to spur the growth of the sector.
Strong evidence now exists of the need to shift diets towards reduced levels of meat-eating among high consuming countries like the UK to help address climate change, promote public health and help feed the world more fairly and humanely. But understanding how to achieve this dietary behaviour change has not yet received the attention it deserves. This report intends to stimulate engagement and action towards addressing this important question. Eating Better has undertaken a review of relevant consumption patterns, trends, and people’s attitudes and behaviours. We identify ten drivers that could provide opportunities for encouraging dietary shifts. We also highlight research and policy gaps and make recommendations.
The corporation is at a crossroads. The businesses that we have grown up with and the business models that underpin them face deep challenges. They are being reconstructed, from within and without, by pervasive technology. Their values, and the values associated with work and the workplace, are increasingly being questioned. Their model of resource use, of “use it and throw it out,” is increasingly running up against constraints of supply costs. New ways of designing and managing businesses, and new business models, are inevitable. Changes in values are always one of the biggest sources of social transformation. One of the most significant changes in values at present is the shift towards wellbeing, at both a personal and public policy level.
The UK food system today faces three major challenges: we need to ensure food security, domestically and globally; our production and consumption of food must be environmentally sustainable; and our food policy must promote public health. Only a socially just food system can meet these challenges, but considerations of fairness are largely peripheral to food policy debate, which instead tends to focus on economic and environmental issues. This report presents the findings of the Food Ethics Council’s Food and Fairness Inquiry, which was set up in order to remedy the relative neglect of social justice in public debate about food policy. It reveals the extent of social injustice in the food system within the UK and at global level, and demonstrates how this unfairness impedes progress towards sustainable food and farming. The problems are several and profound – but the evidence presented to the Inquiry also points the way forward, towards a sustainable, healthy, and fair food system. The report maps out this future trajectory for food policy, and identifies the respective responsibilities of UK government, businesses and civil society.
The Winter 2013 edition of Food Ethics assesses what the right to food means for individuals and communities around the world. They ask experts who should be providing and fulfilling that right; how we can ensure the right to food is met; and what obligations businesses have to support access to affordable, decent food. These are fundamental questions that are as directly relevant to us here in the global north as they are in the global south. The recent proliferation of food banks in the UK, with the associated political hand wringing, as well as the increasing anxiety of NGOs about the sharp increase in land grabs in Asia and Africa are but two recent examples of how the right to food affects us all. The expert contributors include Olivier de Schutter, the UN’s Special Rapporteur on the right to food, Patrick Mulvany (Chair of the UK Food Group & Food Ethics Council member), Phil Bloomer (Executive Director of the Business and Human Rights Resource Centre) and many more.
Adapting to the profound effects of climate change, lifting one billion starving people out of hunger, addressing the escalating obesity crisis – these are just three of the many formidable economic, social and environmental challenges confronting the food system. One thing is clear: if society is going to successfully meet these challenges, something has to change – ‘business as usual is not an option’. This assessment – a key message from the 2010 report Food Justice – has gained widespread, cross-sectoral endorsement in recent years. To date, however, this growing consensus has not been translated into the transformative policy and practice that is urgently required. What, exactly, does getting beyond business as usual mean in practical terms? That is the question the Food Ethics Council’s Beyond Business As Usual project has sought to answer.
The Story of Solutions explores how we can move our economy in a more sustainable and just direction, starting with orienting ourselves toward a new goal. In the current 'Game of More', we're told to cheer a growing economy -- more roads, more malls, more Stuff! -- even though our health indicators are worsening, income inequality is growing and polar icecaps are melting. But what if we changed the point of the game? What if the goal of our economy wasn't more, but better -- better health, better jobs and a better chance to survive on the planet? Shouldn't that be what winning means?
These guidelines are to give pioneer companies some orientation for drawing up the Common Good Report (CGR). For a meaningful report we need two to three sentences per sub-indicator with corresponding parameters. Some of the overviews were inserted in table form; they help to give the reader a good overview of the Common Good Report. Many companies do a lot for the common good. The CG Report must conform to the principle of written form to facilitate its assessment. This means that all actions must be recorded in the report. The task is to consciously write down, document and communicate what is taken for granted within the company. This will make it possible for the CG Report to convey a comprehensive picture of the company and contribute a lot to the company’s own self-awareness.
"The Economy for the Common Good" comprises the basic elements of an alternative economic framework. It employs three approaches: 1. Market values and social values should no longer oppose each other. The same values that contribute to fulfilling interpersonal relationships should be awarded in the economy. 2. Conformity with the constitution. The economy should function in accordance with the values and objectives established by the constitutions of western democracies, which is currently not the case. 3. Economic success should no longer be measured with monetary indicators (financial profit, GDP), but by what is really important, i.e. utility values (basic needs, quality of life, communal values) Market values and social values should no longer oppose each other.
The Well-being at work report summarises the strongest evidence on the factors that influence well-being at work, along with possible implications for employers. It presents examples of how organisations leading the way in terms of fostering well-being at work are addressing these factors. It outlines how certain features of individuals’ working lives have varying degrees of influence over the various aspects of well-being – from increasing a sense of purpose, to promoting positive emotions, morale, motivation, overall job satisfaction and even life satisfaction. Based on statistical evidence, the report concludes that: • Getting the right work-life balance is an effective way of avoiding stress at work. • It is possible to maximise overall organisational well-being through a re-evaluation of how salaries are distributed among employees. • Organisations can adopt certain approaches towards job security that help their staff achieve higher levels of job satisfaction. • Working with employees to ensure they have a sense that their job is achievable can lead to greater job satisfaction, as well as higher levels of morale. • Management behaviour seems to be highly important, with some management styles more successful than others at strengthening well-being at work. • Creating a safe working environment and a sense of the social value of the work of the organisation, may increase employees’ feelings of job satisfaction. • Good levels of job-fit and skill-use, and opportunities to develop new skills, can create high levels of employee satisfaction. • Helping employees to take greater control over their work can lead to better performance and greater job satisfaction. • Taking steps to improve relationships at work – with a particular focus on relationships between staff and managers – and encouraging positive feelings can improve both job and life satisfaction.
The recent rise of the commons and the sharing economy seems to suggest a growing recognition of the fact that our health, happiness, and security depend greatly on the planet and people around us. On the Commons highlights the many ways, new and old, that people connect and collaborate to advance the common good and develop greater economic autonomy in this new e-book
Full Planet, empty plates (Free download of Book) PDF With food scarcity driven by falling water tables, eroding soils, and rising temperatures, control of arable land and water resources is moving to center stage in the global struggle for food security. “In this era of tightening world food supplies, the ability to grow food is fast becoming a new form of geopolitical leverage. Food is the new oil,” Lester R. Brown writes. What will the geopolitics of food look like in a new era dominated by scarcity and food nationalism? Brown outlines the political implications of land acquisitions by grain-importing countries in Africa and elsewhere as well as the world’s shrinking buffers against poor harvests. With wisdom accumulated over decades of tracking agricultural issues, Brown exposes the increasingly volatile food situation the world is facing. With food scarcity driven by falling water tables, eroding soils, and rising temperatures, control of arable land and water resources is moving to center stage in the global struggle for food security. “In this era of tightening world food supplies, the ability to grow food is fast becoming a new form of geopolitical leverage. Food is the new oil,” Lester R. Brown writes. What will the geopolitics of food look like in a new era dominated by scarcity and food nationalism? Brown outlines the political implications of land acquisitions by grain-importing countries in Africa and elsewhere as well as the world’s shrinking buffers against poor harvests. With wisdom accumulated over decades of tracking agricultural issues, Brown exposes the increasingly volatile food situation the world is facing. PRAISE FOR FULL PLANET, EMPTY PLATES Named one of the top 10 books of 2012 by The Globalist. "Full Planet, Empty Plates arrived and I straight away set aside all my other activities in order to enjoy the latest wisdom. He certainly pours out his insights with vigour—and time after time he is bang on target."–Norman Myers "Though heavily packed with statistical information and evidences compiled from the work of hundreds of scientists, this book is an approachable resource for those who are interested in understanding food scarcity, regardless of their educational background."–Maira Niode, Omar Niode Foundation "Each subject is covered in enough detail and with enough supporting evidence to be clear, concise, and convincing. It is the clarity of argument and the brevity that makes this such a valuable book."–John Coulter, Sutainable Population Australia "As with all of Brown’s books, Full Planet, Empty Plates is very well-documented: over 150 data sets accompany the book. Brown fully explains the extent of food challenges in various regions of the globe, and the potential impacts based on environmental and socioeconomic factors in these regions."–Jeff McIntire-Strasburg, Sustainablog "This is a great little book that sums up the global situation, and ties it all together. Best explanation of how everything is interconnected. I wish every American would read this book!!!"–Diane Stewart, environmental activist "Brown presents his compelling arguments in straightforward language, buttressed with numerous facts, statistics and graphs."–Joseph Chamie, former director of the United Nations Population Division One of the top eco-books for the new year according to The Green Insider.
This toolkit provide you with hands-on resources to get your business off the ground. It includes your very own Happy Startups Canvas to write up a one–page business plan, tools to create user personas, tons of ideas for testing your assumptions including tips on interviewing customers and a list of must read articles, video clips and a list of the most useful books to read on the market.
Our new study The Power of Purchasing, completed in cooperation with the Columbia Institute and ISIS at the Sauder School of Business, shows that sourcing from local suppliers has a big economic impact. The study is the first of its kind in Canada. It found that purchasing goods from locally-based suppliers creates nearly twice as much benefit to the local economy as buying from multinational chains. In British Columbia, local governments and school districts alone spend more than $6.7 billion annually on goods and services. This purchasing can be used to reinforce economic development and support strong communities when some of that money is spent with local suppliers. Using office supplies as an example, the study found that Mills Basics, a locally owned B.C. office supply company, re-circulates 33% of their revenue directly to residents and businesses in B.C., compared to 17% and 19% for their multinational counterparts. This presents a 77%-100% economic advantage for B.C. from buying local, and an 80%-100% increase in jobs per million dollars spent. The increase in recirculation is attributed to greater employment on the part of the local company compared to multinationals
There are many opportunities for organizations to benefit themselves, as well as the economies that sustain them, by making minor adjustments to the way that they purchase goods and services. This report outlines strategies and paths that policy-makers, sustainability managers, procurement professionals and others involved in institutional purchasing decisions can pursue to realize this potential. Around the world, there is a growing movement to support local economies, and various approaches are being taken in different places. Great benefits come from strong, resilient local economies, and many opportunities exist to take small steps that can majorly benefit our public institutions, businesses and communities. If purchasers are ready to take on leadership roles, the tools and solutions detailed here are effective ways to expand local purchasing and strengthen our communities. Part I outlines the argument for local procurement. It demonstrates the power that institutional procurement has over the economy and highlights opportunities for change by examining the current landscape in Canada, the United States, Australia and the United Kingdom. It details how local economic impacts fit within the definition of value when attempting to achieve best value inprocurement. Part II and III identify tools that can be used by institutions and policy-makers to increase local procurement. They outline a number of challenges, and details solutions that are currently being used. Examples of the tools have been included along with references to material for further research.
The financial crisis has lifted the veil on capitalism, exposing its inherent frailties, but there is cause for hope. There is much good work going on, with people and organizations exploring new possibilities, in search of better forms of capitalism or a new economy – towards a fairer and more sustainable world. It is also possible to see the pieces of a very interesting jigsaw coming together, bringing into focus an attractive picture of a new operating system – an so we, invite you to join us, on our journey in search of Capitalism 2.0. Through this Paper, we aim is to promote greater awareness of the issues and the possibilities; to give a sense of hope for what might be, if we make conscious choices and move towards a more sustainable economy. We achieve this by exploring the key problems inherent within our current system an then, by building on the great works going on around the world, we synthesise a range of design principles for a better system, exploring the worthy range of solutions, and how we might all work towards bringing about a better, more sustainable future. 1) Less growth, more wellbeing. 2) A broader view of what capital means. 3) Based on responsible enterprise, adding real value, where it is needed. 4) Holistic systems thinking; aligned with the circular economy. 5) Enabled by a well-functioning money system. 6) Away from speculative bubbles, towards creating longer-term real wealth. 7) Shared ownership and distribution of resources and wealth 8) Based on collaboration and striving together. 9) Founded on new institutions and greater systemic resilience.
The Workplace Wellbeing Charter is a statement about the way in which you run your business and support your workforce, demonstrated by adherence to a set of standards. To achieve the Charter you will be asked to demonstrate your commitment and support by taking action to implement any changes which may be necessary in your organisation. The standards contained within this charter are not exhaustive and are intended to set a minimum standard on which your organization can build. They are a guide to what success can look like and a way of benchmarking that success against other. Charter aims and objectives: - Introduce clear, easy to use well-being standards. - Improve well-being and reduce absenteeism. - Provide tools to measure and evaluate progress. - Identify and share good practice and real-life examples. - Show that workplace health and well-being is a worthwhile investment.
This self-assessment contains standards under each of the main areas that your organisation can address to improve the health and well-being of your employees. The purpose of the standards are to provide a guide as to what steps can be taken and give an indication of where you may need to improve, or where you are doing well. Under each area, the standards are separated into three categories: Commitment, Achievement and Excellence. These categories are there to provide a general overview as to how you are performing in each area.
In this report, we present new innovations and the lessons that can be taken from them. They demonstrate practices that could be scaled up across the private sector, and could lead to benefits in four critical areas: 1. Dematerialisation – business products, services or processes that dramatically cut the use of natural resources. 2. Restorative – innovations that relate to net positive environmental impacts and the restoration of biodiversity, forests, fresh water systems and marine environments. 3. Open loop – where one company’s waste is turned into another’s resource. 4. Renewable energy and low carbon – innovations are supportive of a move towards WWF’s call for 100% renewable energy future by 2050.
“Imagine a workplace where people are energised and motivated by being in control of the work they do. Imagine they are trusted and given freedom, within clear guidelines, to decide how to achieve their results. Imagine they are able to get the life balance they want. Imagine they are valued according to the work they do, rather than the number of hours they spend at their desk. Wouldn’t you want to work there? Wouldn’t it also be the place that would enable you to work at your best and most productive?” The Happy Manifesto is a non-fictional guide to anyone wanting to improve their workplace, this is Happy’s open and loud call for change. We need better, and happier, workplaces. We need a new kind of management…