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Mice Net : October 2008
sustainability a system developing STORY BY AdAm Beck, ARup in this article he offers a few pointers. AdAm Beck sAys developing a sustainable event management system isn’t beyond reach. M y last article introduced sustainability and the events industry, with a particular mention of the British Standard BS8901 for Sustainable Event Management, the world’s first standard for sustainable event management. If you don’t have a copy of this and are serious about sustainable events, you need to get yourself one. BS8901 is now considered the world’s best practice in the delivery of sustainable events. The three specific phases that BS8901 guides you through are (1) planning, (2) implementation and (3) evaluation. I will discuss each of these three phases in turn. Planning is the crucial first step in delivering a sustainable event. It involves securing high level corporate commitment and drafting a sustainability policy for the event or organisation running the event. The sustainability policy outlines the organisation’s commitment to the principles of sustainable development. It also requires an ‘issues scan’ so you can identify which stakeholders have influence over the outcomes of your event. For each issue, you need to establish objectives, key performance indicators (KPIs) and targets. If you have nothing to measure you will never know how successful you were. The implementation phase of the system involves the modification (where necessary) of procedures for the event to ensure sustainable outcomes are achieved. This involves: • Designating appropriate responsibilities; • Providing the necessary training and resources; • Communicating effectively with stakeholders; • Effective supply chain management; and • Appropriate documentation. Once an effective SEM system is established for an event, in most cases it is easily modified or adapted and is able to be readily applied to another event. The Standard contains some useful checklists and templates which you should consider applying to your event. Finally, assessing and reviewing the performance of the implemented SEM system is vital to ensure its value and relevance, particularly against your KPIs. It provides a mechanism for identifying areas for opportunity and improvement. The assessment involves evaluating compliance with the standard and implementing procedures for periodic audits of the SEM system. Management reviews complement the assessments and should be held on a regular basis to assess performance. So now that you have an SEM system for your event, I will in my next article help demystify the carbon neutrality concept. Adam Beck is a Sustainability Associate with Arup, one of the world’s leading design and business consultancy firms who have focused on delivering sustainable projects for more than 60 years. Contact adam. email@example.com. 30 mice.net