Case Study: A New language to Share New Ideas

Read the Following Case Study and Answer the Multiple Choice Questions to Follow

Keisha and Craig are two executives working in parks and conservation who have collaborated in the past on projects as part of public-private partnerships, leading to the development of Canada’s Nature Legacy initiative. Keisha works in a provincial government. Craig leads a national NGO. Keisha and Craig got together at a conference recently, and shared some of their leadership experiences. Here are some excerpts that illustrate various examples of social capital in action.

  • In conversation with Craig, Keisha mentioned that she had to prepare a briefing note to update her executive team on a partnership with industry to purchase carbon credits, which offered the potential of protecting forests surrounding provincial parks. Keisha had come across the discipline of conservation finance at a workshop where she met accounting people who were looking at sustainability in a different way than she was used to. As a social scientist, Keisha consciously adopted a holistic world view in her work in nature and ecology, and this thinking about carbon markets was very different. Although this new financial way of thinking about sustainability presented some political challenges, Keisha was enthusiastic because, as she said: “I needed a fresh way of thinking about what to do – a new path to inspire me to think differently”.
  • By learning about conservation finance, and integrating this language and knowledge into her work with provincial parks, Keisha was hoping to craft a new path of collaboration around the issue of financial sustainability of nature parks. However, in a recent working group conference call about financial sustainability, there was so much disparity of opinion that it wasn’t possible to reach agreement on next steps. Keisha felt the discussion had to be put on hold until a new way of thinking could be found. Keisha was looking to create a shared mindset that would encompass the vision and values of the different parks and conservation stakeholders, however she was finding it extremely difficult to define financial sustainability in a way that would encompass the common interests of such a broad group

At the conference, Keisha was asking Craig for ideas on framing financial sustainability in a way that could bring the working group back on track.