Call for Proposals: SUSTEX 2019 ‘Leading the One Planet Way’


Texas A&M University-Central Texas’ Inaugural Summit on Sustainability


March 20-22, 2019 in Killeen, Texas, USA

pastedImage 2

We’re excited to be partnering with Texas A&M University-Central Texas to organise their inaugural SUSTEX Summit on 20-22 March 2019.

SUSTEX is bringing leaders from the private sector, government, and academia together in a personalized environment to reflect and discuss the present challenges and successes in advancing sustainable business practices and education.  This inaugural conference is a full two-day format with a focus on your role in the Sustainability field. After a kickoff dinner on Wednesday evening, the focus for Thursday is geared to include private sector and government solutions and approaches, scheduled with keynote speakers/panels and breakout sessions. Friday will be focused on the academic aspects of sustainability, examining both ways to better promote sustainability in higher education, as well as research presentations. The format on Friday may include workshops, research presentations and round tables. 

The inaugural theme reflects a major strategic initiative within the College of Business Administration at A&M-Central Texas, to embed sustainability into the curriculum through the newly launched M.S. in One Planet Leadership.

A&M-Central Texas is proud to be a founding One Planet Business School in the One Planet Education Network. OPEN consists of business schools committed to embedding sustainability and social responsibility into their teaching, service, and scholarship, as well as into the practices of their respective institutions.

Call for Proposals:
Given the goal of advancing the conversation on sustainability, a broad range of proposals for acceptance will be considered so as to not inhibit creativity and great ideas. Presentations may be 20, 30, or 60 minutes in length, and panels are welcomed. Proposals must be received no later than January 31st with acceptance decisions sent out no later than February 8th. Review and acceptance of exceptional proposals will also be made on a rolling basis to accommodate travel plans. Proposals may be submitted Here

The conference will be held on the new A&M-Central Texas campus, featuring unique vistas and, hopefully, beautiful wildflowers in bloom. It is situated 70 miles from the Austin-Bergstrom International Airport, which has many nonstop flights from across the United States and Europe. We have very little area traffic once you get north of Austin, so commute times from the airport are relatively quick! We’re also just three miles from the Killeen-Fort Hood Regional Airport that is serviced by both American and United airlines through Dallas and Houston, respectively. Lodging will be available at the Courtyard by Marriot in Killeen for under $95/night plus tax. Click to reserve your room.

Conference registration is reasonably priced at $295 and includes:  transportation to and from events, daily refreshments, dinner on Wednesday night overlooking Lake Belton, Thursday and Friday lunches, and dinner on Thursday at a local vineyard. Click to register.

This is our first conference and improvements will be made as we go, so please bear with us. If you have any questions or run into any issues, please contact the conference chair: Lucas Loafman, Interim Dean for the College of Business Administration at or 254-519-5724.

SUSTEX 2019: Leading the ‘One Planet’ Way

We are very excited to make a preliminary announcement for SUSTEX, a new conference  for sustainable business that our friends at Texas A&M-Central Texas are hosting and co-organising with us.

Mark Your Calendars for SUSTEX!

March 20-22, 2019 in Killeen, Texas, USA

Theme: Leading the “One Planet” Way

The goal of the inaugural SUSTEX conference is to bring leaders from the private sector, government, and academia together in a more personalized environment to reflect and discuss the present challenges and successes in advancing sustainable business practices and education.  The conference will be held on the beautiful new A&M-Central Texas campus located about an hour north of Austin, TX, which is a center for sustainable business practices and initiatives.

Photo by Jeremy Enlow
Photo by Jeremy Enlow

Conference registration is just $295 and includes special dinner outings, snacks and local ground transportation around Killeen. A special rate has been negotiated with a local hotel at $95/night plus tax.

Final details, registration, and proposal submissions should be open by November 1st (finalizing contracts now). Watch this space for further details.

If you have any questions, please contact the conference chair: Lucas Loafman, Interim Dean for the College of Business Administration at or +1 254-519-5724.

OPEN General Assembly 9th Oct 2018

HOLD THE DATE – Our first General Assembly will be held 14.00-17.00 UK time on 9th Oct 2018 via Zoom conference call. This will be an opportunity to bring together our Fellows and Associates with our board to review progress and discuss the future.

We will be joined by Winnie De’Ath, Director of Brand, Communications and Planning at WWF International as our guest speaker. Winnie will be sharing her insights and expertise on how we build the OPEN brand in the digital age.

All Fellows and Associates will receive a Zoom link, agenda and papers by email this next week.

COSUST Special Issue: Sustainability Transformations

Originally published at

A COSUST special issue, co-edited by cCHANGE’s Linda Sygna, explores the social transformations needed to meet the 1.5°C climate target.


A recent COSUST special issue, co-edited by cCHANGE’s Linda Sygnaand University of Canterbury Associate Professor Bronwyn Hayward, brings together over 100 of the world’s leading researchers on sustainability transformations to explore the kind of social changes needed to meet the 1.5°C climate change challenge.

The twenty articles (many of which are free to download) combine insights from the natural and social sciences, humanities and the arts and highlight the diverse ways climate change responses can be understood in the context of sustainable development and poverty eradication.

The authors shine a light on different approaches around the world (India, China, and Africa), across different sectors (agriculture, urban environments, innovation, investment, and the arts), and across different scales of governance (multilateral organisations, local governments and communities). They also consider the role of narratives and storytelling to explore the “what” and “how” of social transformations.

What should sustainable social transformations look like?
Many of the articles point to the need for holistic, inclusive and systematic approaches for social transformation towards a 1.5°C warmer world. Without considering diverse approaches to transformation, we risk oversimplifying the problems and underestimating society’s capacities to influence systemic change, whether positively or negatively.

How can we achieve them?
It is clear that such far reaching transformations will require collective empowerment and political will for a just and sustainable transition. Several of the articles call for a critical re-examination of climate governance in an increasingly complex and uncertain future. In some cases, they surmise that the current governance structures are far from adequate to even respond to the current challenges.

Taking transformations seriously
While offering fresh insight on meeting the 1.5°C challenge, the articles in this special issue also showcase that the research community itself is willing to take transformations seriously. The authors take intellectual risks to encourage innovative and solutions-oriented policy making and look critically at their own role in producing knowledge on transformations towards sustainability.

Special Issue:
Sustainability Governance and Transformation 2018
Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability (COSUST)
Edited by Bronwyn Hayward and Linda Sygna
Volume 31, Pages 1-160 (April 2018)
View Contents Page

Forthcoming Launch of an MS in One Planet Leadership

by Tony Cooke, CEO, One Planet Education Networks

We’re really excited to be announcing that, after months of hard work behind the scenes,  our partners at Texas A&M University-Central Texas, the world’s first One Planet Business School, are preparing to launch their new Master of Science in One Planet Leadership. OPEN Fellows Professor Jody Fry and Professor Barb Altman have been heavily involved in its development, with support from the OPEN team including Professor Jonathan Gosling, Dr Sally Jeanrenaud and Jean-Paul Jeanrenaud.

The first class-based cohort will start in the Fall. An online cohort will then follow in the Spring 2019.

This program is designed for practising managers and leaders interested in developing the knowledge, mindset and competencies to successfully lead organisations towards a sustainable future.

With a focus on sustainability principles, it’s a program that challenges students to explore the complex task of creating and leading learning organisations that seek to maximise employee well-being, social responsibility and performance excellence – the triple bottom line or ‘People, Planet, Profit’.

The program draws heavily from our book ‘Sustainable Business: A One Planet Approach’ (in fact, there will be a module by the same name) with a core focus on leadership responsibilities, competencies and ethics, as well as a focus on developing skills for cross-sector partnerships and driving change. The full program breakdown is shown below:

  • Research Methods
  • Organisational Behaviour
  • Sustainable Business: A One Planet Approach
  • Responsibilities and Ethics of Leadership
  • Designing Organisations for Sustainable Effectiveness
  • Global Leadership for Sustainability
  • Leadership Development and Formation
  • Sustainable Operations and Service
  • International Management for Sustainability
  • Cross-Sector Partnerships for Sustainability
  • Development and Change for Learning Organisations
  • Graduate business or management elective

The introductory leaflet for the program can be downloaded here MS One Planet Leadership_July2018


ONLINE COURSE: Introduction to Environmental Sociology

by Dr Kim Smith, OPEN Fellow

Have you wanted to expand your sustainability knowledge about social and environmental issues through a sociological lens? Consider taking this on-line summer course through Portland Community College.

Offered by sociology professor and OPEN Fellow, Dr. Kim Smith, Introduction to Environmental Sociology provides an overview of the core structural and cultural variables that shape our world. Using regional, national, and international examples, students will gain insights on historical and current sustainability issues, as well as learn how to analyze them and make a difference.

Course Description

This course examines the relationship between societies and the environment, with a focus on how industrialization and our increasing demand for natural resources have significantly impacted the planet’s ability to meet the needs of humanity and other species. We will explore the structural and cultural causes and consequences of such topics as production, consumption, population, development, pollution, materialism, inequality, and environmental justice and how to respond to these issues through policies and actions. Hopefully, this course will help students develop their “sociological imagination,” increase students’ awareness about environmental issues and human behaviors and attitudes, and enable them to critically evaluate sociological solutions related to the natural and social worlds.

The course is on-line, so students can participate from anywhere. There is still room in this 10-week class, which starts next Monday, June 25, so be sure to register soon. 

To register, click here.

Please share this on-line summer course opportunity with others.

#INFOCUS Conference Update

Today I spoke on a panel at the United Nations in Geneva at #INFOCUS, a social innovation and entrepreneurship conference hosted by the UN and the Russian Government. Sharing the stage with me were social entrepreneurs working on refugee and gender issues, alongside the founder of a Russian publishing empire, a policymaker and a Russian Minister…an interesting mix to be sure.

The ensuing debate was enlightening, mostly as it revealed an appetite for disruption of the status quo that I hadn’t expected from a sovereign state. There was an acceptance that emergent technologies like blockchain were going to enable a networked community of change agents for sustainability to self-organise around social and environmental problems and that it’s for governments and investors to think much harder about how they become enablers rather than barriers.

Most surprising was the Russian Government’s interest in social entrepreneurship as a vehicle for nation-building to compensate for the exodus of brains, entrepreneurs and investment they’ve seen since the collapse of communism. It would seem that the Russian diaspora are not being relied upon to do the right thing – to return and invest in their motherland. Rather, their Government is seriously interested in investing in developing the heads, hearts and minds of the next generation of Russians and from an early age, as early as primary school. Those at the conference seem to understand the importance of emotional connectedness to the issues, of social mission being at least as important as entrepreneurial competencies and intentions, of the relevance of entrepreneurship to all sectors of society (including government) and of the need to create radical transparency via enabling platforms that share data and insight to overcome the information asymmetry experienced by most social entrepreneurs when developing their ideas.

Come to think of it, it’s not the first time that I’ve heard of an interest in the disruptive possibilities of technology from a country without the heavy reliance on multinational corporations for its tax revenues (I seem to remember the Indian Government expressing a similar interest when I was in Delhi).

We could well be surprised where the investment comes from to catalyse a transformation in how we self-organise for sustainability and it could very well turn out to be the next frontier of state-sponsored national competitiveness.