Monday, 12 September 2011

Are ecosystems the last hope for the world's accountants?

One of the advantages of managing this blog is I get to post some of my own stuff (shameless I know...). I thought it might be interesting to title this post by taking this earlier one and turning it on its head. Ian Thomson and myself have been looking at the wider issue of ecosystems and systems thinking in sustainability accounting, and we produced a presentation (i.e. no paper yet!!) for this year's CSEAR UK conference.

The presentation was entitled "The Other Invisible Hand: Misplaced Faith in Self-Organising Ecosystems". In the session we explored the impact of the nature and scientific origins of self-organising ecosystems and possible consequences for developing sustainable accounting. Within parts of sustainability policy arenas and accounting literature there is a faith in the self-organising properties of ecosystems and nature, which is translated into laissez faire solutions requiring no human governance, assuming nature has her own invisible hand to rectify the follies of humanity. However, self governance can be an equation to make a mathematic model work rather than based on observable natural phenomena.

A major motivation for this session is a recent documentary series by Adam Curtis, called All Watched Over by Machines of Loving Grace. If you missed it, check it out here:

No comments:

Post a Comment