ISO 19011

The ISO 19011 series represents environmental management and auditing standards, created by the International Organization for Standardization, which certify products and companies that meet specific processes and practice criteria. These supercede many of the criteria initially developed under the ISO 14000 standards. ISO 19011  Read More

ISO 14000

The ISO 14000 series represents environmental management standards, created by the International Organization for Standardization, which certify products and companies that meet specific processes and practice criteria. This standard is applicable to any organization that wishes to: implement, maintain and improve an environmental management system assure itself of its conformance with its own stated environmental policy (those policy commitments... Read More

Human Capital

One of at least four forms of capital used by people, organizations, corporations, and governments, to build and maintain their livelihoods. Human Capital is the sum total of knowledge, experience, “good will,” intellectual property, and labor available to an organization or society. While many organizations value their people, many do not manage or measure human capital in sustainable terms. These four forms of capital are described, in detail,... Read More

Gross National Happiness (GNH)

Coined by Bhutan’s King Jigme Singye Wangchuck, Gross National Happiness (GNH) measures actual well-being of a country’s citizens rather than consumption, accounting more fully for social, human and environmental realities. Its premise is that basic happiness can be measured since it pertains to quality of nutrition, housing, education, health care and community life. By contrast, the conventional concept of Gross National Product (GNP)... Read More


A term merging the concepts of “green” (environmentally sound) and “whitewashing” (to conceal or gloss over wrongdoing). Greenwashing is any form of marketing or public relations that links a corporate, political, religious or nonprofit organization to a positive association with environmental issues for an unsustainable product, service, or practice. In some cases, an organization may truly offer a “green” product, service or practice.... Read More


A metaphor to describe a movement or change that begins among people with shared interests that they can define and act upon collectively. As a noun it refers to ordinary people in a community or organization. As an adjective it refers to the origin or basis of a principle, idea, or movement.  Read More

The Global Sullivan Principles (GSP)

Created by Rev. Leon Sullivan during his service of the Board of General Motors in the 1970s, these principles were a proposed means to dismantle aparthied in South Africa. The principals are a code of conduct that organizations voluntarily adopt to ensure basic human rights and equal opportunity employment in the workplace. The GSP is credited as one of the major tools used in dismantling apartheid. Rev. Sullivan started his human rights work in... Read More


A specification for a passenger vehicle made of ultra-light materials, is aerodynamically streamlined (for low drag), and uses a hybrid-electric drive system. Regenerative design (such as in hybrid cars) is also implemented which converts normally wasted braking energy back into stored electricity. While any one of these characteristics alone can create improved efficiency, when all are combined, the resulting solution achieves a 3 to 5-fold improvement... Read More

Fair Trade (Fairtrade)

A system of trade in which workers receive living wages and employment opportunities for the goods they produce. This system serves as an alternative approach to conventional international trade for producers who are typically economically disadvantaged artisans and farmers from developing countries. The producers partner with international organizations that help them build their skills to market and sell goods such as crafts, and agricultural products... Read More


The relation of outcomes, measured in a variety of ways, to the inputs required for that level of production. In business, efficiency of materials, energy, personnel, investment, and processes are commonly measured in order to measure performance and prioritize expenditures and projects. In sustainable business, a systems perspective requires addressing untraditional economic effects (such as lost energy though waste, lifecycle analysis of materials,... Read More