Sustainability in Your Sector: Exploring the Potential of Professional Sustainability Certification

by Kristina Byrne on November 29, 2012

 Originally aired November 27, 2012, Co-produced with the American Planning AssociationSecond Nature and the International Society of Sustainability Professionals.

Professional Certification in Sustainability

Sustainability has reached the spotlight in recent years as a field of research and emerging sector of professionals. A growing number of businesses and municipalities are creating sustainability positions and departments in response to consumer and citizen concerns and burgeoning international trends in green business, corporate responsibility, and resilient city planning.

There has been an emerging discussion around professional certification in sustainability. The session investigates the need for establishing certification by measuring the benefits of professional certification against the challenges of establishing industry standards.  Panelists talk about current certifications being offered, how organizations would value an industry standard, and how stakeholders could potentially work together to establish the curricula necessary to define the field of sustainability professionals.

  • Jeff Soule and Felicia Braunstein, APA’s Directors of Outreach & International Programs and Director of Professional Practice, respectively, talk about the nuts and bolts of developing and maintaining an industry standard of practice.
  • Ira Feldman, President and Senior Counsel, Greentrack Strategies and international leader in environmental standard setting, talks about the perceived need for professional certification in sustainability and the discussions that have taken place thus far.
  • Marsha Willard, ISSP’s Executive Director and Presidio Graduate School adjunct faculty, paints a picture of existing sustainability certificate and training programs.
  • Mitchell Thomashow, Director of Second Nature’s Presidential Fellow’s Program and Former President of Unity College, provides an academic perspective.
  • Rich Goode, Senior Manager, Climate Change and Sustainability Services at Ernst & Young, and Ed Pinero, Chief Sustainability Officer, Veolia Water North America, discuss the value to employers.
  • Larry Falkin: Director, Office of Environmental Quality, City of Cincinnati, discusses the value of certification in a municipal setting.

Download the webinar’s pdf slides – click here

Listen to an interview by SSF Managing Director Ed Saltzberg, with ISSP Executive Director, Marsha Willard, about the evolution of the sustainability profession as a lead up to the webinar.

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Dan Fogel February 18, 2013 at 11:32 pm

Where do I find out about the competencies in the ISSP certificate program?


Kristina Byrne February 20, 2013 at 4:20 pm

More information about the ISSP certificate program is available here


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