The Natural Resources Institute (NRI) co-hosted a workshop last week with ISEAL - the international membership body for a range of sustainability standards. Participants represented Rainforest Alliance, the Fairtrade Labelling Organisation, 4C Association, UTZ Certified, Global Sustainable Tourism Council, Aquaculture Stewardship Council, Union for Ethical Biotrade, the Forest Stewardship Council and ISEAL itself.
The workshop brought together representatives of the different standard systems with researchers from around the world that are working on the impact of private standards, as well as representatives from the UK Department for International Development and the Ford Foundation.
ISEAL is currently carrying out a project entitled: 'Demonstrating and Improving the Contribution of Certification to Poverty Alleviation' and under the auspices of this project they approached NRI to co-host this workshop in recognition of the long standing experience of NRI staff in this field. The workshop, entitled: 'Who's Who and What's on in Research about the Poverty Reduction Impacts of Sustainability Standards', was held on the 27th and 28th of November at the University of Greenwich's Greenwich Maritime Campus.
NRI staff, Valerie Nelson, Adrienne Martin and Barry Pound, gave a presentation on the challenges and opportunities they have encountered in developing methodologies and conducting diverse impact assessment studies on fair and ethical trade and sustainability standards since the late 1990s. This presentation is available to view here.