In recent years, increasing numbers of organisations have recognised that there is a powerful case for managing the social, environmental and wider economic impacts of their activities. Many organisations however, are unsure of how best to act.
The purpose of the SIGMA Guidelines
The Guidelines help organisations to:
The SIGMA project has developed the SIGMA Guidelines to provide clear, practical advice to organisations to enable them to make a meaningful contribution to sustainable development.
|effectively meet challenges posed by social, environmental and economic dilemmas, threats and opportunities.|
|become architects of a more sustainable future.|
The development of the guidelines
The SIGMA Project has involved a unique range of leading practitioners, thinkers and opinion formers to ensure the Guidelines are as effective and credible as possible. They were developed through:
|research into best practice and by commissioning new work|
|practical piloting of different drafts of the Guidelines by leading companies and public sector organisations|
|input from stakeholders, particularly from the wide range of organisations represented on our Project Steering Group.|
The Guidelines consist of:
|a set of Guiding Principles that help organisations to understand sustainability and their contribution to it.|
|a Management Framework that integrates sustainability issues into core processes and mainstream decision-making. It is structured into phases and sub-phases.|
SIGMA is the first of its kind, but it links into existing management systems and frameworks such as ISO 14001, Investors in People, the ISO 9000 series, OHSAS 18001 and AA1000 Framework, thus enabling compatibility with existing systems and helping organisations to build on what they already have in place.
The SIGMA Guidelines provide flexible and workable solutions that can be implemented across a wide range of sectors, types of organisation and functions. This document is a guide for practitioners. Its intended audiences are:
|organisations from the private, public and voluntary sectors, regardless of size, industry or stage of development in understanding the sustainability challenge|
|managers responsible for directing, planning or implementing sustainable approaches in their organisations, including functional specialists such as product designers, human resources and business process professionals|
|anyone interested in the contribution organisations can make to sustainable development.|
About the SIGMA Project
The SIGMA Project – Sustainability – Integrated Guidelines for Management – was launched in 1999 by the British Standards Institution, the leading standards body; Forum for the Future, a leading sustainability charity and think-tank; and AccountAbility, the international professional body for accountability, with the support of the UK Department of Trade and Industry (DTI).