As the field of sustainability matures and we better understand which activities are actually making the most impact, the conversation is starting to take a new turn.
I wanted to share with you a few brief perspectives and lessons that have been at the forefront of my mind: an evolving view of how managers view sustainability and the growing importance of resilience.

Focus on the basics: the business of sustainability

We work in a quickly shifting and dynamic space as agriculture faces increasing volatility and risks. As real-time management systems become technologically possible, we are partnering with supply chain and sourcing managers to combine private sector expertise with systems thinking. The result? Functional data systems that enable managers to effectively measure and manage the sustainability of their projects. See how Jacobs Douwe Egberts has done this for over 50,000 farmers in Ethiopia, Honduras, Indonesia, and Vietnam.

The right tools for resilience

With more game-changing hazards such as climate change, water scarcity, and labor shortages than ever before, sustainable development requires ensuring the survival of farms and livelihoods. Development agencies and economists who focus on rural areas are increasingly turning their attention to ways that the resilience of farming systems can be managed and improved. Are resilience metrics part of your toolkit?

I am pleased to announce a new work stream made possible by a grant from the Ford Foundation that will apply COSA’s multi-stakeholder approach of bringing together scientists, civil society, business, and development practitioners on common indicators for resilience.