Connect: Social and community news from IEMA

5th October 2018


Sussex and Surrey: Augmented Reality Nature Trail

By Sandra Norval

On August 29, IEMA joined up with the beautiful Ashdown Park Hotel and local business Bluedotaug to host an event with a difference.

The site has been managed by Kevin Sweet, estate manager, for 42 years with a focus on biodiversity. The 186-acre grounds include a Site of Specific Scientific Interest (SSSI), a golf course and a diverse range of wildlife – but, of course, the latter doesn’t always appear on demand.

To enhance the experience, IEMA created an augmented reality trail, which showed what might be seen at each marker – for example, the butterfly that landed on Emily D’Silva’s head!

For the full event report:


Doughnut Economics

By Richard Clarke

The second of IEMA’s webinar book club meetings took place in August, discussing Kate Raworth’s Doughnut Economics. It’s a book that has been making waves, and even forms part of the IEMA sustainability syllabus.

The session was ably led by Marek Bidwell, who began by summarising the doughnut model concept and the seven key elements of Raworth’s argument. This was followed by group discussion.

At IEMA HQ, Spencer Clubb managed incoming questions and comments and patched in callers wishing to voice their opinions. The webinar software is easy to use, and viewers were able to contribute both verbally and in writing.

While Doughnut Economics is primarily concerned with economics, it also examines many other factors that resonated with attendees, including population, regenerative circular economy models, natural capital and ecosystem services and whether green growth is possible.

An interesting area of debate centred around whether the doughnut model can be used in a professional capacity, such as in training courses and leadership meetings, or to support context and scope requirements in ISO 14001. The model is perhaps most powerful at representing the planetary boundaries model in a clear form. Of particular interest was whether the model could allow a better dialogue with employees who aren’t sustainability professionals, to help them make a connection between an organisation’s commitment to environmental management and wider global concerns.

Ultimately, the book club works well as a prompt for many to read a book they might not normally consider, and gives participants a chance to explore new ideas in a comfortable way. Look out for the next session, and join the debate – it’s a different and engaging way to work on your CPD.

For the full event review:


Volunteers sought for steering group

Another busy year for the Impact Assessment Network steering group is coming to an end. In accordance with our terms of reference, four members are stepping down. Thanks go to Rufus Howard (Royal HaskoningDHV), Lauren Osmond (ERM), Steven Harding (Arup) and Joanne Murphy (EA) for their valuable contributions.

We are now looking to recruit four enthusiastic members to join the group for a three-year period from February 2019.

The group meets four times a year and drives best practice, innovation and advocacy.

To provide a diversity of membership, we particularly welcome applications from developers, lawyers, planners, utilities and local government.We also encourage applications from all ages, genders and nationalities, as we are keen to better represent the breadth of people within the IA community.

For more information , visit You can also contact Spencer Clubb at [email protected] or Peter George at [email protected]


Blueprint for a new environment act

● Thu, Oct 11, 2018 12:30PM-1:30PM BST

The UK prime minister has announced that her government will bring forward the first Environment Bill for 20 years. It offers an opportunity not just to fix the Brexit governance gap when the UK leaves the EU, but to establish a world-leading framework for the environment. It’s an exciting opportunity, and one that we can’t afford to miss. This webinar is your opportunity to hear the latest thinking and a unique opportunity to get involved in shaping the new Environment Act.

Become part of creating a greener and more prosperous future and register:

Explore the Social & Human Capital Protocol

● Wed, Nov 14, 2018 12:30PM-1:30PM GMT

Interested in measuring and valuing your organisation’s impacts and dependencies on people and society? Join this upcoming webinar, where we’ll explore the updated Social & Human Capital Protocol with the newly established Social & Human Capital Coalition and the World Business Council for Sustainable Development.

The launch of the Coalition marks a key step towards social and human capital being consistently measured and valued in line with financial capital among corporations, investors, governments and organisational decision-makers.

For more information and to register:

A common social impact framework for rail

● Wed, Nov 28, 2018 12:30PM-1:30PM

Rail operations and projects present risks of negative impact and opportunity, but also wider value and benefits to the communities they serve. However, these positive impacts are rarely measured or maximised. In this webinar you will hear about a new, freely available social value framework ideal for the rail industry and how it can provide structure to conversations on social value.

The webinar is ideal for anyone working in rail and infrastructure projects or operations with a social sustainability interest, CSR professionals and EIA professionals considering social impact.

To register:

Image credit: iStock


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