September 2, 2014

  • Autumn-Leaf-Circle

    How Sanofi creates a virtuous cycle with sustainability

    Dr. Jeana Wirtenberg, nationally recognized expert in organizational change, shares the third of four exclusive excerpts adapted from her new book Building a Culture for Sustainability. Our whole focus is patient-centric. This is core to who we are and integrates CSR into everything we do. —John Spinnato, 2012 What has inspired me most as I’ve come to know Sanofi and its people over the last 10 years is their extraordinary level of caring and humanity, manifested in the company’s overriding commitment “to improve the health of all seven billion people on the planet.” Whether this translates into helping people in Africa…






  • ArleneEllis1_600x350

    How to speak art and science to an audience

    Yesterday I hand fed a blue jay, helped rehabilitate a pigeon that had lead poisoning, and felt the tiny feet of a curious cardinal named Ben walk across my back. These are just a few of the fulfilling experiences I had while volunteering at the Wild Bird Fund Center, New York City’s first wildlife rehabilitation center. The center’s services—which include providing full examinations, x-rays, surgeries, splinting, diagnostic tests and medicine when required—are dependent on donations and the help of volunteers. I became a volunteer at the center for four reasons: I love drawing animals, especially birds. I love science, especially…






  • GreenTeam600x350

    Capturing hearts and minds with green teams

    Dr. Jeana Wirtenberg, nationally recognized expert in organizational change, shares the second of four exclusive excerpts adapted from her new book Building a Culture for Sustainability. Ingersoll Rand is committed to making sustainability a widely held value that becomes a central part of how its employees live and work every day; it is going beyond compliance, or simply “following the rules.” Gretchen Digby, director, global education and engagement, CEES, explained that Ingersoll Rand wants to help its employees find ways to integrate sustainability and “apply it to everything we do.” She called this behavior-based sustainability. It is similar to “behavior-based safety,”…






  • RobinWilliams600x350

    Robin Williams and the need for kindness

    This morning I learned about Robin William’s suspected suicide. I am stunned and heart broken. I had become so used to having him around. I remembered how much his movies enriched my childhood (Hook, Aladdin, Mrs. Doubtfire, Jumangi and the Birdcage), teenage (Good Will Hunting and Patch Adams) and young adult years (Awakenings). As I read the condolences from his friends and peers in the entertainment industry, I noticed how many of them emphasized William’s acts of kindness. Most of appreciate when people are kind to us, but few of us are consistently kind to others. The fact that this man, with all his…






  • deforestation_ebola600x350

    Are humans inducing epidemic outbreaks?

    When the Ebola virus first hits you, it starts with a headache. But with horrifying haste, it sets in like a stroke. Blood vessels break and intestines split open, turning internal organs into a toxic soup. Death comes in convulsions as the body crashes and bleeds out. To paraphrase from The Hot Zone, the 1994 bestseller by Richard Preston, is arguably tasteless at a time like this. But despite his Stephen King-like dramatization of Ebola’s gruesome effects, Preston was prescient in his parting sentence: “It will be back.” The Ebola virus has indeed come back with a vengeance. The infectious agent…






Book Reviews

Putting 'responsible business' out of business
Posted by Claire Sommer on Tuesday, August 12, 2014


Putting 'responsible business' out of businessChristine Bader’s book The Evolution of a Corporate Idealist: Girl Meets Oil offers hope and practical advice for anyone trying to stimulate meaningful change in our multi-stakeholder, shareholder-beholden, profits-focused world. Doing this kind of work is hard, but then again, pretty much anything worthwhile usually ...
[click to read]

How 9 companies are creating a culture of sustainability
Posted by Claire Sommer on Tuesday, August 12, 2014


How 9 companies are creating a culture of sustainability Jeana Wirtenberg knows sustainability is about people. Living, caring human beings – who get things done. It’s not “green.” Or “eco.” Not goals or dashboards. Not on their own, at any rate. It’s people who make these things actually happen. Sustainability is people at every level ...
[click to read]

The Big Pivot: A realist's guide to a climate-challenged present
Posted by Claire Sommer on Tuesday, August 12, 2014


The Big Pivot: A realist's guide to a climate-challenged presentIf you’ve ever thought of dropping a book on your boss’s desk, in the hopes of sparking a Ray Anderson-type conversion, here’s a tip. Don’t use the new IPCC report: It’s gloomy, terrifying and a muddle. Try this instead: Andrew Winston’s business transformation book for the “new ...
[click to read]

Sweat and the city: The urban heat island effect
Posted by Ann Drumm on Tuesday, August 12, 2014


Sweat and the city: The urban heat island effectCities are heating up at double the rate of global climate change, with major implications for human health. Managing urban heat is just as important a response as reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, and the benefits will be felt much sooner.  Cities should prioritize strategies ...
[click to read]