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Proutist Economic Development Triple Bottom Line. Dr. Michael Towsey and Dieter Dambiec. economy. ecology. community. financial value. A business enterprise takes place around three kinds of value which interact. A sustainable business will have three positive balances.

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proutist economic development triple bottom line

Proutist Economic DevelopmentTriple Bottom Line

Dr. Michael Towsey


Dieter Dambiec

 2004 Proutist Universal





Proutist Universal


financial value

  • A business enterprise takes place around three kinds of value which interact.
  • A sustainable business will have three positive balances.
  • The Triple Bottom Line focuses attention on three kinds of added value – economic, human / social and environmental.


human & social value

ecological value

Proutist Universal

the triple bottom line
The triple bottom line

The triple bottom line

Proutist Universal

who is doing it
Who is doing it?
  • Royal Dutch / Shell Group
  • BP (British Petroleum)
  • Rio Tinto
  • British Telecom
  • Volkswagon Group
  • Toyota Motor Corporation
  • Credit Suisse Group
  • Around 290 businesses in 29 countries release sustainability reports based on the guidelines of the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI)

Proutist Universal

why are they doing it
Why are they doing it?

The Prestige…

The Prestige

– Oil Spill 2002

Proutist Universal

the prestige oil spill
The Prestige Oil Spill
  • An environmental catastrophe occurs as a tanker sinks off the coast of Spain.
  • The stricken Bahamas-flagged Prestige, carrying millions of barrels of oil, leaves a slick over 200 metres wide and 30 km long off the north-western Spanish coast.
  • The slick threatens one of Europe's most picturesque and wildlife-rich coasts.

Proutist Universal

who does the clean up work and pays
Who does the clean up work and pays?
  • Members of the French Navy deliver oil-trapping nets to Galician fishermen.
  • Workers place a floating barrier to protect the coastline from spilled oil.

Proutist Universal

what are the impacts
What are the impacts?
  • Oil washes up on the shore in Camelle.
  • Spanish sailors help shovel sludge off an oil-stained beach.

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who has to live with it
Who has to live with it?
  • Inhabitants of Camelle watch clean up efforts for the Prestige oil spill.
  • A resident walks on an oil-soaked shore near Porto do Son.

Proutist Universal

  • Companies have a social responsibility to ensure their business practices are sustainable.
  • But look at the derangements:
    • The idea that business has a social responsibility is fundamentally subversive. - Milton Friedman
    • Anyone who does anything for anything other than profit is either a madman or a bankrupt. - Mr McKinnon, Minister for Defence, Australia, 1970s.
  • But what is happening now?

Proutist Universal

shell report 2002
Shell Report 2002

For 2003

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the social auditing cycle
The social auditing cycle

A sustainable company will:

  • Define its values
  • Define its social and environmental objectives / targets
  • Identify stakeholders – all those affected by its business
  • Account for all components of its social objectives
  • Report the accounting results
  • Have the report independently audited by qualified social auditors
  • Set new targets and improve its performance

Proutist Universal

the benefits of social auditing
The benefits of social auditing
  • “Improved employee satisfaction … improved relationships with key government stakeholders, community groups and non-government organisations … improved reputation in the market place.”

(BP Australia)

  • “Improved relationship with regulators.”

(Integral Energy, Sydney)

See research by the New South Wales Chamber of Commerce:

Proutist Universal

international standards
International standards
  • International reporting standards:
    • Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) established 1997.
    • Reports should be verifiable.
    • Steering group includes: U.N. Environment Program; World Business Council for Sustainable Development; New Economics Foundation.
  • International auditing standards:
    • AccountAbility: Institute of Social and Ethical Accountability.
    • AA1000 Assurance Standard (2002).

Proutist Universal

maleny credit union
Maleny Credit Union

- Ecological Sustainability indicators

Proutist Universal

maleny credit union17
Maleny Credit Union

Governance Policies:

  • During the course of 2002-03 the MCU Board developed and accepted a governance policy based on the Carver Model.
  • See:
  • The MCU Governance Policy covers:
    • Financial Sustainability;
    • Social Sustainability;
    • Environmental Sustainability.
  • The governance policy directs the operations of the MCU and is reviewed regularly by the Board.

Proutist Universal

quadruple bottom line
Quadruple bottom line
  • Where do we go next?
  • The quadruple bottom line adds in culture as an accountability, reporting and auditing requirement.
  • It recognises that business can promote and learn from indigenous culture - thereby creating economic, social, environmental and cultural benefits.
  • See for example in New Zealand (Aotearoa):

  • Also (it may be the 4th or 5th bottom line):

Proutist Universal

quintuple bottom line
Quintuple bottom line
  • The quintuple bottom line looks at how an enterprise works cooperatively and how the cooperative itself promotes social equality in society as a whole.
  • An extension of the quadruple bottom line?
  • Enterprises should aim to achieve a society free from all social inequalities with the human race moving in unison in its diverse and elevated expressions.
  • Eg, to achieve social parity, Unity: Journalists of Color Inc demands that by 2008 minority journalists should comprise no less than 20% of American newsrooms, and at least 15% of newsroom managers.


Proutist Universal

cooperative action
Cooperative action
  • The structural commercial or business model required to achieve social parity in day-to-day interaction and working life is the cooperative enterprise.
  • Cooperatives are the main means of ensuring rational distribution of profits to workers and / or shareholders in the local economy.
  • They aim for social equality and equal locus standi.
  • The cooperative system is capable of ensuring the social welfare of all citizens in the local economy.

Proutist Universal

proto spiritual outlook
Proto-spiritual outlook
  • To achieve social parity and implement the principle of social equality requires a broad outlook and universal view.
  • This is the proto-spiritual mentality.
  • In this way limiting geo-sentiments and socio-sentiments can be easily surmounted.
  • The movement is toward neo-humanism - respect for all humans, animals & plants and their worlds.
  • A Gaian nature-friendly ethic and practice.

Proutist Universal