A while ago I was working on an event for a government body and part of the brief was that it was to be a ‘sustainable event’. Having been involved in sustainable marketing for some time, I was well aware of the principles and techniques but as I am a keen proponent of making use of specialists, I decided we needed a sustainable events consultant on the team. I searched the UK in vain for somebody with the right credentials so decided to turn my attention to Europe: surely we would find someone – perhaps in the green focused Scandinavian markets?
No, surprisingly the richest source of specialists was the US. Given their attitude to ecology and global warming this bemused me. Looking closely I saw that I was confusing national government issues with those of local activists. At state and city level, authorities are keenly aware of the need for sustainable dimensions. This has stimulated a vigorous sector of specialists and even spawned professional bodies.
Sometimes our generalisations blind us to the specific cases. I feel suitably chastened and heartened and I will look more closely at individual, sustainable leadership from the US (sorry Mr Gore).
I’m pleased to say that now, just a few months after my original search, there is a lot of help available from UK sources in mounting sustainable events in the UK. There is even a government site providing help and guidance.