We live in a time of great uncertainty, complexity, and unprecedented systemic challenges. Addressing complex sustainability challenges requires unprecedented collaboration and new ways of working across sectors and across scales.

We have a long track record of working with organizations to help them become sustainability leaders. Our effort to support the emergence of role model organizations that can inspire others is a key part of our mission.

We are a highly respected provider of learning programs based both on a big-picture, science-based understanding of sustainability and an understanding of the hands-on skills needed by today’s leaders.

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Sharing and Partnering

For those of us in the field of social change and innovation, a key factor in the success of any initiative, is the ability to scale up impact. After six years of testing and prototyping our approach in Canada with over 200 communities, businesses, universities and non-profit groups we are ready to share our learning and approach with others. We are expanding our reach from working just with organizations, to working with individuals as well. We are thrilled to announce the launch of a new series of courses and learning programs for individual change agents and leaders who are committed to implementing sustainable solutions in their communities and businesses. Check out our Sustainability for Leaders workshops in six major Canadian cities.

GONGOS: Greening Ottawa NGO's

On June 18th, 2009 participants from 25 Ottawa-based NGOs attended the second workshop of GONGOS: Greening Ottawa NGOs.  This workshop focused on developing a sustainability vision and conducting a baseline sustainability assessment for their organizations.  The 2009 cohort of organizations includes the Canadian Red Cross Society, the United Way, the Federation of Canadian Municipalities, the Ottawa Folk Festival, Centretown Citizens Ottawa Corporation, and Independent Living Canada.  This gathering of diverse NGOs in one place provided participants with the unique opportunity for both enhanced networking and partnership building and collaborative learning. Bill Rostek, Procurement Director for Canadian Red Cross Society shared that the Red Cross "values the interaction with the other not-for-profit organizations that are participating”.

Sustainability on the Big Island

Last month, Mike Purcell and I travelled to the Big Island of Hawai’i to deliver a series of public workshops and one two-and-a-half day capacity building session with representatives of various island businesses and organizations. Needless to say we took a lot of ribbing from colleagues and customs agents about going to Hawai’i to work, but the truth is, this was a hugely successful project that brought hope and enthusiasm to participants and advisors alike. Why?

In our work, people typically begin to deeply address the sustainability challenge for one or both of the following reasons: there is a fire in the room (to mitigate risk) and / or there is a pot of gold in another (to capture opportunity). This is bolstered by proof of possibility (examples of what others have successfully done) and for some, a sense of ‘doing the right thing’.

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