Sustainability and the Supply Chain


Prof Richard Wilding from Cranfield School of Management, delivers a well timed reminder of the type of considerations that Companies NEED to weigh up in this modernity. The relentless pursuit of profit, without consideration for impact upon other, interdependent, domains within our Global ecosystem has been the norm.

But at last the message is being adopted by some of the largest global corporations and, through their own supply chains, they are ensuring that their “brand credentials” match their customer aspirations.

Greenwashing – companies that claim “green credentials” to aid sales – should be as unacceptable as use of child labour or other activities that exploit valuable resources for profit.

It is very interesting that Prof Wilding talks about biodiversity at a really personal level and “builds” to Corporate level. I can’t help but draw the comparison with Fractals  – the work of Benoit Mandelbrot identifying the recurrence of, apparently random, irregular patterns in nature – and Power Law distributions – a power law is a relationship in which one quantity A is proportional to another B taken to some power n. Power laws emerge naturally in systems that are decidedly not in equilibrium e.g. the Earth’s crust or the Internet, which evolve perpetually and never settle into an unchanging state.

 

Sustainability: recognising ecosystem interdependence

Prof Wilding refers to a recent TEEB report that I highlighted in a blog item, The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity, in November. A copy of the report can be downloaded from there.

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