Sustainability has many definitions and it is many things to many people.
It can simultaneously be an idea, a property of living systems, a manufacturing method, or a way of life. For some people it is little more than a hollow buzz word. The definition of sustainable development given by the Brundtland Commission, is the most frequently quoted:
Sustainable development is development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.
However, it is not universally accepted and has undergone various interpretations. Difficulty in defining sustainability stems in part from the fact that it may be seen to encompass all human activity. It is a very general concept like "liberty" or "justice", which is accepted as important, but a "dialogue of values" that defies consensual definition. It is also a call to action and therefore open to political interpretation concerning the nature of the current situation and the most appropriate way forward.
A further practical difficulty with a universal definition is that the strategies needed to address "sustainability" will vary according to the particular circumstances under consideration.
However, stakeholders expect organisations to react positively to these issues and demonstrate visible integrity and clear transparency in the way that environmental, social and financial aspects are managed.
Can sustainability ever really be achieved and consistently delivered and measured within organisations?
There is significant global effort going into trying to find answers and solutions to the question with obvious good reason.
From our point of view, the facts speak for themselves. We are not inundated with case studies of how organisations have succeeded and can prove it.
What we are certain and passionate about is that part of the solution lies in the architecture of a mature, dynamic, single Business Management System that covers everything that an organisation does.
We assist private and public sector Clients in delivering Sustainability strategies: