Professional and Career Topics

  • 1.  New ISO Standard for UN SDGs

    Posted 10-14-2022 10:59 AM

    Colleagues,

    Proposal to develop a new ISO Management System Standard (MSS) for the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDG)


    https://www.ds.dk/en/about-standards/management-systems/new-mss-sdg-proposal


    This would be a management standard for any business or organization and organizations and businesses could be certified to the standard demonstrating their support for selected SDGs.


    As background see ISO 26000 https://www.iso.org/iso-26000-social-responsibility.html ISO 26000 predates the SDGs and is written to specifically exclude certification to the standard.


    In your view, what are the strengths and weaknesses of  the proposed standard project?


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    William Kelly Ph.D., P.E., ENV SP, F.ASCE
    MR
    St Michaels MD
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  • 2.  RE: New ISO Standard for UN SDGs

    Posted 10-14-2022 03:56 PM
    Maybe for those of us that are not up on this topic you could 1) tell us why this should be of interest to this community, 2) provide some more information on the background (e.g., what it means to specifically exclude certification) and 3) give us a sense of the some of the key issues at play in a new standard and their implications.

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    Mitch Winkler P.E., M.ASCE
    Houston, TX
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  • 3.  RE: New ISO Standard for UN SDGs

    Posted 10-20-2022 10:16 AM

    Mitchell,


    Thanks for the questions and your interest in the proposal. 


    If this standard is developed and approved its impact would probably be greatest at least initially on companies and organizations working internationally. At least some of those companies and organizations would probably seek 3rd-party certification to demonstrate conformity to the standard and their support of the SDGs. 


    Although the expectation is much lower (no certification), look at the companies that are members of the UN Global Compact including a number of well know names in the 

    Engineering and Construction sector; see UN Global Compact Our Participants https://www.unglobalcompact.org/what-is-gc/participants and search for a company.


    The proposed ISO standard would apply to companies and all organizations.  Organizations such as the World Federation of Engineering Organizations http://www.wfeo.org/ that actively support the UN SDGs globally might  want to become certified for formal recognition of  their support of the SDGs. Note that the Global Compact lists organizations but does not require them to report on progress. 


    Big difference between what the Global Compact is doing and the proposed ISO standard is that it would be possible to certify to the standard. 


    Here is a link to the DS site https://www.ds.dk/en/about-standards/management-systems/new-mss-sdg-proposal


    To see some of the pros and cons of the proposed standard  see the response to question 12 in the justification study part of the proposal https://www.ds.dk/media/np5ptbav/np_management_system_for_un_sustainable_development_goals_-_requirements_for_any_organization-1.pdf  


    Hope this helps.



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    William Kelly Ph.D., P.E., ENV SP, F.ASCE
    MR
    St Michaels MD
    ------------------------------