Unprecedented innovation will be a feature of the next decade as organisations strive to make more out of less. So predicts Graham Terry, senior executive; strategy and thought leadership at the South African Institute of Chartered Accounts (SAICA), in his preface to Green II, SAICA’s sequel to the highly acclaimed Green I, published some three years ago.
Green I vs Green II
Green I sought to raise business people’s awareness levels of the huge sustainability challenges facing humankind and their likely impact on the business sector. It was aimed at encouraging behavioural change to avoid future disasters and to highlight emerging opportunities. Business people and chartered accountants were urged to take the lead in bringing about change.
Green II has been compiled as an update on Green I. The former differs from the latter, a solo effort by Terry, in that “knowledgeable individuals from various fields and backgrounds” have contributed to Green II, which carries the views of more than 30 prominent individuals, among them Mervyn King and Wiseman Nkuhlu.
- broad-based black economic empowerment;
- sustainability development and the responsibility of government;
- global issues to address sustainability;
- the importance of sustainability issues for small and medium-sized businesses;
- integrated reporting;
- management accounting implications; and
- how to embed sustainability practices into an organisation.
Terry predicts a “difficult future ahead of us”, since the world cannot supply sufficient resources to allow everyone to enjoy the same standard of living as the average American citizen.
Green is good business
Mervyn King’s foreword to Green II urges corporate leaders to embrace sustainability in order to ensure the continued creation of value. He pinpoints the two great challenges of the 21st century as financial stability and sustainability. “These great challenges are connected. Financial and commodity markets intersect.”
Continuing the Green theme
Wiseman Nkuhlu commends Green I on having promoted and deepened awareness of sustainability issues, with Green II expanding on those themes and highlighting new developments.
“The key message is that sustainability has become a business imperative. All businesses, big and small, should embed sustainability in their strategies and business processes.”