From Open Sustainability
A New Model for Organizations
Sustainability information has been mangaged within organizations in the past using a combination of polices and procedures housed in a content mangagement system, and issue management systems. This system may have been enterprise wide or more of a boutique Health, Safety and Environment Management System. With health and safety and environment becoming mainstream issues, there is a trend towards their management within the existing business systems.
A new model is now emerging for enterprises who are aiming to be more sustainable by using innovative techniques. We have developed open-sustainability to help companies push beyond business as usual and seek out new and better ways of achieving the results. open-sustainability provides a methodology that organizations can apply to introduce better Sustainability practices into their existing corporate methodologies.
Rationale for Open-Sustainability
The Open-Sustainability Approach is unique in it's support of an information-centric sustainability governance framework. Below we will highlight the rationale for an open, sustainability governance gramework to support new organizational models for sustainability & informational management.
- Sustainability Governance is needed because issues related to poor quality, inefficient systems and incorrect process often lead to issues such as waste and pollution and constrain development.
- Sustainability Governance can help provide guidelines, controls and frameworks for organizations to assist them on the path to better sustainability.
- Governance is also important to encourage and open and transparent approach. As sustainability is such a broad and complex topic and has varying definitions, it is important to have common definitions as best as possible.
- It is needed to keep companies, solution providers and solution implementers “honest” in an area that will receive a tremendous amount of capital investment and political attention. Sustainability is a complex so its easy to provide misleading results.
- It is critical to understand the impacts of decisions and how they impact other areas of Sustainability (e.g. how a program that helps reduce a retailer’s carbon footprint by stopping imports from Africa impacts other areas). The goal should be to capture and provide objective information for decisions.
- As the transformation organizations must go through is so significant, companies will benefit from sharing lessons learned. This isn’t necessarily “trade secrets” but an open and transparent forum for them to share information.
- Companies need to think of Sustainability as a competency, something that needs to be integrated into the way the run their business, deliver projects and measure success.
Fundamentally Sustainability Governance is about making sure that the architectures, policies and technology solutions that have been defined are effectively and efficiently implemented. While its focus may be for a specific area, it must be inclusive with a comprehensive approach to Sustainable Development
Open Sustainability can help organisations to move towards a software development approach focused on Sustainable Development. Listed below are what can be considered to be some of the Differentiating Features of the Open-Sustainable approach:
- Architecturally-driven approach that is not linked to any vendor (although there are vendor-specific assets)
- Provides a method, not a “solution” before the problem is known
- The method is content-rich, with detailed technical assets to help provide the “how”
- Ties tactical into the strategic vision – we are always able to be present “where to next”
- Can be used in complementary fashion to Enterprise Frameworks such as Zachman and TOGAF
- Can be applied at the enterprise level, but allows for tactical projects
- Open Source version hosted within a collaborative environment
- Fully based on Open Source technologies
- Provides a mechanism to drive new standards through an open methodology for Sustainable Development
- Better means to provide feedback on value of content through Talk Page discussions and Peer Reviews
- Balances adding new content with release stability through a Release Cycle
- Allows contributions from a global information management community
- Housed within an overall collaborative framework providing tools and technology