Affiliated projects and people

The people behind the People and Planet Holdings, a non extractive investment fund, are among those behind the Bio-Cultural Resilience Tool, which is a non profit People & Planet Holdings Summary, 31Dec12

One response to “Affiliated projects and people

  1. Great to have this blog up as I am on a quest with Kevin Jones and others to accelerate business practices that restore and regenerate nature. Resilience offers a powerful frame.

    http://www.stockholmresilience.org/21/research/what-is-resilience.html offers an intro to what we mean by resilience. We are building from Stockholm Resilience Centre’s system’s approach to socio-ecological systems. We affirm a core value that human and environmental well-being are inter-dependent and inextricably linked. We do not subscribe to premises of an old guard conservation ethic to ‘protect nature now and worry about people problems later.’ We are working to consider the role of culture that binds people to one another, and manifests deeply in human’s material, social, and spiritual relationships with nature. One manifestation of why this matters is the fact that where there are high concentrations of biodiversity there is a strong correlation with cultural integrity of Indigenous Peoples. While I am not suggesting there are ‘noble savages’, indigenous cultures have sustained biodiversity in contrast to western culture that has driven the consumption of nature to the point of a planetary crisis.

    In this context, we are looking at how business can be a lever for systems change with positive social and conservation outcomes. This can mean companies incorporate ecological restoration into their cost of doing business extending beyond payment for environmental services which are good but remain insufficient. My most inspiring examples are companies that restore and regenerate nature. Will Raap’s work with Earth Partners removing invasive species that permits range land restoration while creating wood chips fueling an energy substitute to coal is a great example http://www.theearthpartners.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=94&Itemid=151

    I am also inspired by Terracylce http://www.terracycle.com/en-US/ growing rapidly with a business proposition to eliminate the concept of waste. They have taken plastics recycling, upcylcing and product redesign to another level. http://www.terracycle.com/en-US/. They are delightfully disruptive but perhaps don’t best embody biocultural resilience.

    I hoe this blog can build upon a rather lively conversation we have been having on facebook at https://www.facebook.com/BioCulturalResilienceTool providing a basisfor a free flowing exchange uncovering a range of interesting resources and perspectives.

    “Biosphere Entrepreneurship – An Approach To Supporting Human Well-being and Ecological Resilience” described at http://www.vanerkulle.org/vk/images/stories/files/297_Biosphere%20Entrepreneurship%20-%20A%20Pilot%20Study%20Webversion.pdf reflects the work of one of our project partners that manages the Lake Vanern Biosphere Reserve in Sweden who has been diligently developing and applying a strategy to foster local business activity that contribute to the Biosphere’s conservation objectives. As a non-profit, this project has also become a source of funding and constituency building. Thus, there are many benefits for non-profit conservation practitioners to adopt this approach, but it first requires value alignment which can unleash very powerful possibilities.

    What can investing in biocultural resilience look like? Sweden’s Lake Vanern was restored from a highly polluted place to a healthy place for people and planet. This included identifying cultural assets and traditional knowledge that can be leveraged to build well-being for people and planet. And, this involved the non-profit biosphere manager together with local public officials convening public-private partnerships that supported actively expanding high value fish products with ancient native fishing communities – cavier for the planet!

    We are now considering approaches to catalyze this approach and way of thinking especially among investors, and businesses. However, we also need donors, protected area managers, public agencies and academia. Systems change requires many actors and we believe harnessing business can be a very powerful driver…to build the world we want.

    We are building an open platform to support and encourage a participation and engagement and welcome ideas you may have to join us.

    Shaun Paul

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