Newsletter of the
INTERNATIONAL ENVIRONMENT FORUM
Volume 13, Number 1 --- January 2011
Article submission: email@example.com Deadline next issue 10 February 2011
Secretariat Email: firstname.lastname@example.org General Secretary Sylvia Karlsson-Vinkhuyzen
Postal address: 12B Chemin de Maisonneuve, CH-1219 Chatelaine, Geneva, Switzerland
There are spiritual principles, or what some call human values, by which solutions can be found for every social problem. Any well-intentioned group can in a general sense devise practical solutions to its problems, but good intentions and practical knowledge are usually not enough. The essential merit of spiritual principle is that it not only presents a perspective which harmonizes with that which is immanent in human nature, it also induces an attitude, a dynamic, a will, an aspiration, which facilitate the discovery and implementation of practical measures. Leaders of governments and all in authority would be well served in their efforts to solve problems if they would first seek to identify the principles involved and then be guided by them.
(Universal House of Justice, The Promise of World Peace, 1985. p.13)
From the Editor
Please feel free to share the Leaves newsletter with family, friends, and co-workers who may be interested and to encourage them to consider membership in the IEF. In addition, if you have information to share, please email it to email@example.com.
Election of 2011 Governing Board
The Governing Board is elected each year by the world-wide membership during the General Assembly.
Members for the upcoming year include:
Peter Adriance (USA)
Diana Cartwright (China)
Arthur Dahl (Switzerland)
Emily Firth (Switzerland)
Duncan Hanks (Canada)
Sylvia Karlsson-Vinkhuyzen (Netherlands)
Victoria Thoresen (Norway)
Request for inputs: International Environmental Governance
In preparation for the 26th Governing Council of the UN Environment Programme (to be held in Nairobi,
Kenya, from 21-25 February 2011), the recently created civil society Advisory Group on International
Environmental Governance is working on a background document to be presented to governments. The
document will seek to address five key questions:
1. Why should international environmental governance reform be of interest to developing countries? What are the relevant outcomes?
2. Why is incremental reform not enough? Why is fundamental reform of international environmental governance necessary?
3. Why should the world believe in and support the United Nations, when multilateralism is not delivering results?
4. Why strengthen the UN Environment Programme when environment should be everyone's responsibility and integrated into all other UN programmes and agencies?
5. What are some effective and/or promising models for engaging civil society in the work of the United Nations on the environment?
All inputs needed to be received by 8 January; however, interested members please visit the website and contact Arthur Dahl about possible contributions to later phases of the process. http://www.environmentalgovernance.org/featured/2010/12/call-for-contri…- advisory-group-on-international-environmental-governance/
Report from the IEF 14th Annual Conference
Making the Invisible Visible: An Emerging Community of
Practice in Indicators, Sustainability and Values
University of Brighton, United Kingdom, 16-18 December 2010
The International Environment Forum adopted the international scientific conference that presented results of the ESDinds project as its 14th Annual Conference, and contributed elements to the programme. See the detailed programme at the link below and at http://www.esdinds.eu/. The project has produced exciting results on the development of values-based indicators, tested in the field with civil society organizations and businesses. The conference brought together workers in the different but overlapping fields of indicators, sustainability and values, and a new "community of practice" is starting to emerge from these interactions, with a web site at http://www.wevalue.org.
In our society only the visible counts. Only material and easily quantifiable values are measured, and when it comes to decision-making only what can be measured is appreciated, thereby strengthening a society that is based on market values and continuous economic growth, marginalizing environmental and social values. This is a significant challenge for those who consider real yet difficult to measure things such as the beauty of nature or intangible things like spiritual values to be essential aspects of life.
For the past two years an EU-funded research project on values-based indicators of education for sustainable development (ESDinds) has worked on how to make these invisible, ethical and spiritual values visible by, for example, developing indicators to measure trust, integrity, justice, empowerment, unity in diversity, and care and respect for the community of life in businesses and civil society organizations.
The Conference was organized around four overlapping themes:
Values - The relevance of values to the success of businesses, Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) and other organizations, even when they are not themselves values-based, is becoming increasingly recognized, and a theme of the conference was the usefulness of values-based indicators in that context.
Useful indicators for CSO projects - The development of useful indicators of any type for civil society (CSO) projects have always been problematic. At the conference speakers from CSOs, funders and researchers gave updates on challenges and emerging ideas.
Co-design and partnership in research - The importance of co-design and the involvement of Communities of Interest for the success and appropriateness of a research project was explored.
Ethics and Sustainable Development - Major advances have been made in developing indicators, but challenges still exist at the project (or local) level, and in linking to ethical values.
In the final discussion, one theme was about action at the local level. Local authorities could be a driving force, but they are limited in powers and citizen support, and often dependent on financial support from national government. Devolution can just be a way to pass on the responsibility for hard decisions. Too much focus at the local level could lead to ghettoism. There are experiments with local economy, but keeping money in the local community can impact on the national economy. Creative communities and social innovation succeed in a small organic way, but when they scale up they lose trust and increase bureaucracy. Sometimes encouraging community public service is opposed by the trade unions who see jobs being replaced by volunteers.
Another theme was the global crisis and possible responses. Smaller countries have been least affected, especially those not so integrated into the global economy. Chile created a copper fund when prices were high to save for bad times. The many intertwined problems will continue and a crisis is coming. Adaptive capacity is needed, such as savings and resources. Demilitarization could help. The Irish experience was cited, with a false rise in GDP with the influx of finance by multinationals, while literacy, social support and the health system declined. Financial institutions show a total lack of responsibility, with profits to the banks and losses to the governments, and politicians buy into this. We still believe that bankers are smart, and it is strategically hard to bring values in. The recent financial crisis was only a small blip; a more fundamental transformation is needed towards a moral economy. As Buckminster Fuller said, we should overturn the system by making it irrelevant. There are alternative measures of worth, and a lively recent debate on alternative economics.
Where do we go from here with WeValue? Some organizations and individuals are continuing the partnership, and others are welcome to join. We need multiple dialogues at all scales, across disciplines and CSOs, with more practical examples of values in action. The Brighton team will consider organizing another event to facilitate further action. It will also offer training in WeValue methods, and there are further funding calls to respond to. Earth Charter International will keep going and wants to exchange experience. EBBF will launch its programme to bring WeValue into businesses and organizations on 1 February. The IFRC (Red Cross) offers its experience with Youth as Agents of Behaviour Change. As we build relationships, we shall build a shared language and send out humble champions.
With snow shutting down transportation across England, the conference ended early, but with a sense of satisfaction that a constructive process had been set in motion.
The electronic conference consisted of a forum on this web site at https://iefworld.org/forum/119 where summaries of key speeches were posted, and presentation slides were added as available. Video and audio recordings will only be available later. You can comment on the sessions if you register as a user at: https://iefworld.org/user/register.
For a more complete conference report, as well as many video recordings of sessions and PowerPoint handouts, check out the IEF web site.
|Session Presentation Title||Presenter(s)||Resource|
|Opening Session: Making the Invisible Visible||Dean Andrew Lloyd (University of Brighton), Marie Harder (ESDinds project)||video|
|Indicators and the Need for Values||Professor Bedrich Moldan||video|
|DESD we can? Learning our way out of unsustainability||Arjen Wals||PPT|
|Values: why do successful businesses consider them a competitive advantage?||Daniel Truran||PPT|
|The Earth Charter: Meeting a Need for a Universal Values/Ethics Framework||Rabbi Jeffrey Newman||video|
|Values as the basis for action in the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies: the Youth as Agents of Behavioural Change (YABC) Initiative||Dr Katrien Beeckman||PPT|
|A New Framework of Values-Based Indicators and the "We Value" Toolkit||Professor Marie Harder||PPT|
|Project Evaluation and Transformation with Values-Based Indicators: the Echeri Project with Indigenous Children in Rural Mexico||Cardiela Amezcua Luna||video|
|Windows on the World: Views from Minessence||Jackie Le Fevre||video|
|The IFRC's YABC (Youth as Agents of Behaviour Change) Initiative||Dr Katrien Beeckman|
|Measuring Values in Education - a scheme in 58 schools||Molly O'Duffy||PPT|
|The Communication of Social Values||Dr Julie Doyle||PPT|
|Life-Enriching Values||Gwen Clifford||PPT|
|Environmental Indicators||Professor Bedrich Moldan|
|Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) Indicators||Professor Arjen Wals|
|Positioning of WE VALUE indicators in relation to conventional indicators of sustainable development||Dr Tomas Hak & Svatava Jarouskova|
|The Quadruple Bottom Line (4BL) and holistic perspectives on sustainability - lessons from the social enterprise sector regarding values, strategies & social impact measurement||Dr Jim McLoughlin||PPT|
|The Sustainable Self: a personal approach to education for sustainability||Dr Paul Murray||PPT|
|NGOs in Rural Development and their Drawbacks||Ahmet Akyurek||doc|
|End of Tradition? Reconnecting British people back with Nature through OPAL||Maxwell Ayamba||PPT|
|The MOWGLI Mentoring Scheme in Syria||Bernadette Devine|
|Partnerships in PERL||David Chittenden||PPT|
|Life: A Systems Approach - Reflections on Multiple Dimensions of Sustainability||Arthur Dahl||PPT/audio|
|New Developments in Understanding Values||Martin Kirk||video|
|The 'Good Governance for Medicines' Programme||Dr Guitelle Baghdadi-Sabeti (World Health Organization)||PPT|
|The Value of Design in a Sustainability Context||Karen Blincoe||PPT/PDF|
|Measurement: Making Values a Normal Part of Projects and Organizations||Arthur Dahl||PPT/PDF|
|Building Values-Driven Organizations, Communities and Nations||Richard Barrett||PPT|
|Healthy University-CSO Partnerships||Professor David Wolff||PPT|
|The Role of Values in Achieving a More Sustainable Development||David Chittenden||PPT|
|The Impacts of Using Values-Based Indicators in Projects Worldwide||Alicia Jimenez||PPT|
|Partnership, engagement and participation - faith based communities and their engagement with the environment through long term plans||John Smith|
|European Union FP7 Opportunities for CSO Involvement in Research||Marie Harder|
|The role of moral leadership in transformation for sustainability||Onno Vinkhuyzen & Sylvia Karlsson-Vinkhuyzen||PPT|
|The Growing Importance of CSO Partnerships: Lessons from CREPE Project||Les Levidow||PPT|
|Validity Checks of "We Value"||Martin Zahradnik|
|Peace Child International's Youth-led Monitoring and Evaluation Hub||David Woollcombe||PPT|
|Measuring Social Impact||Simon Northmore||PPT|
|Assessing Empowerment||Andrew Bartlett||PPT|
|AtKisson Inc. and the COMPASS Framework for Sustainability||Michael Lunn||PPT|
|"WeValue" for Businesses||Serge Thill|
|Illuminating Values Systems: Introducing Values Technology||Sara Wolcott and Leonard Joy||PPT|
|Values and Behaviour in Organisations Under Stress||Jackie Le Fevre|
|Design for Social Learning: Transformative Learning Theory and Practice||Jody Boehnert||PPT|
|Co-Design in Action||Nick Grant||PPT|
|The Need for Better Design of Research Projects with CSO Partners||Marie Harder||PPT|
|Partnerships in 'We Value'||Gemma Burford|
|Experiences of Partnerships in Global Action Plan International||Marilyn Mehlmann|
|How Project Quality links to Values||John Smith|
|Beyond GDP Growth: Using Values to enable and measure Societal Development?||Sara Wolcott|
|Brighton and HoveÕs response to the changing UK policy context: Intelligent Commissioning, co-production and developing new measures of success||Dr Paula Black|
|'Effective' versus 'Successful' CSO Projects||Marilyn Mehlmann||PPT|
|Education and Lifestyles: Policy Processes, Values and Indicators||David Chittenden||PPT|
|The Future of the Global Economy||Professor Augusto Lopez-Claros||PPT|
(since publication of the newsletter, additional videos have been added)
Calendar of Upcoming Events
Interfaith Power & Light (IPL) Preach-In on Global Warming, 11-13 February 2011
PERL International Conference, Istanbul, Turkey, 14-15 March 2011
15th IEF Annual Conference, Australia, 2011 (location to be determined)
Wilmette Institute Course on Sustainable Development and Prosperity of Humankind, 15 September-15 December 2011
United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20), Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, May 14-16 2012 (including 16th IEF Annual Conference)
New IEF Web Site - Overview
The main URL address remains https://iefworld.org, but all the page addresses within the site are new, so you should update your links. Some files have not yet migrated (papers, sustapedia entries, the long training course), and are temporarily linked on the old site until the migration is completed. The old site will be gradually phased out, with forwarding to the new site.
HELP WANTED! If any members know the Drupal system and would like to help to manage the web site and/or add new features, please contact Arthur Dahl at firstname.lastname@example.org. You could develop a new feature, be webmaster for the whole site, or just take responsibility for some part of it.
The following was taken from Wikipedia
Drupal (pronunciation: /'dru:pel/) is a free and open source content management system (CMS) written in PHP and distributed under the GNU General Public License. It is used as a back-end system for at least 1% of all websites worldwide ranging from personal blogs to corporate, political, and government sites including whitehouse.gov and data.gov.uk. It is also used for knowledge management and business collaboration....
Although Drupal offers a sophisticated programming interface for developers, no programming skills are required for basic website installation and administration.
InterFaith Power Light (in the United States)
Interfaith Power and Light is mobilizing a religious response to global warming in congregations through the promotion of renewable energy, energy efficiency, and conservation.
Global warming is one of the biggest threats facing humanity today. The very existence of life - life that religious people are called to protect - is jeopardized by our continued dependency on fossil fuels for energy. Every mainstream religion has a mandate to care for creation. We were given natural resources to sustain us, but we were also given the responsibility to act as good stewards and preserve life for future generations.
IPL focuses on tangible results in congregations - putting our faith into action. This work includes educating congregations and helping them buy energy efficient lights and appliances, providing energy audits and implementing the recommendations, encouraging people to buy more fuel efficient vehicles and to drive less, supporting renewable energy development through "greentags," working on large-scale renewable energy installation projects such as rooftop solar and advocating for sensible energy and global warming policy.
The Interfaith Power and Light effort began in 1998 with Episcopal Power and Light and the support of Grace Cathedral as a unique coalition of Episcopal churches aggregated to purchase renewable energy. In 2001, IPL co-founded California Interfaith Power and Light, which helps people of faith in California to organize and promote positive environmental change around energy and global warming. Nationally, IPL is working to establish Interfaith Power and Light programs in every state.
Interfaith Power and Light is working to help congregations be models of energy efficiency, utilize renewable energy, and to lead by showing a strong example of stewardship of creation. At the same time, we know that we cannot stem the tide of global warming by our actions alone, and therefore actively support public policies to reduce society-wide U.S. emissions to a sustainable level.
National Preach-In on Global Warming 2011
National Preach-In on Global Warming 2011 IPL is inviting faith leaders to give sermons and reflections on global warming the weekend of February 11-13, 2011. Baha'is are very much involved in this effort, and Peter Adriance, an IPL Governing Member, is a member of the Advisory Committee, acting as a representative for the National Spiritual Assembly of the Baha'is of the US.
The IPL website has all the materials you need to host an event, including:
Denomination-specific liturgical and thematic notes to help in the preparation of sermons, reflections, devotionals, Bible studies, and youth activities (for Baha'i Faith, Bible Study, Episcopal, Jewish, Lutheran, Methodist, Unitarian Universalist, and Roman Catholic).
Ready-to-go sample sermons on global warming
Global warming fact sheet and bulletin insert
Free bulletin inserts and Valentine's Day postcards to send to your senators/policy makers, urging them to love Creation and protect the climate.
Selected DVDs on request with companion discussion guides
YOUR ACTION ENCOURAGED: Please register on the IPL web site to host a devotion, study circle, children's class, or junior youth group meeting the weekend of February 11-13.
Australian Religious Response to Climate Change
The religions of Australia have a shared sense of moral purpose on climate change. The Australian Religious Response to Climate Change (ARRCC) is a multi-faith network committed to taking the action on this most pressing issue of our time.
In the face of ecological damage and social injustices, we affirm our love for this planet and its inhabitants and our deep reverence for life. We seek transformation of a world tottering on the brink of disaster, equipping each other to be the change we wish to see.
The Australian Religious Response to Climate Change (ARRCC) is a multifaith network committed to taking action on climate change. The religions of Australia have a shared sense of moral purpose on climate change. Each of our diverse traditions has a common concern for our world and a deep reverence for life. We strongly acknowledge the interdependent relationship between our welfare and that of the planet, and between social justice and ecological integrity. We recognise the threat posed to these by human-induced climate change. While celebrating the uniqueness of our different traditions, we stand together in working for a ecologically and socially sustainable future.
ARRCC's mission is to galvanise faith-based responses to climate change in Australia, empowering faith communities to be beacons of faith-based environmental sustainability. We educate faith communities on issues relating to climate change. We equip them to lead by example, through taking practical actions such as reducing their energy consumption and switching to renewable energy. And we support them in advocating for public policies that will provide a sustainable future.
Updated 3 February 2011