Mission is not yet accomplished, warns Ben Carpenter at Social Value Matters 2021
“It’s not yet mission-accomplished.”
Ben Carpenter, CEO of Social Value International, warned against complacency at today’s opening of Social Value Matters 2021, the annual conference for people involved in measuring and managing social value.
The event is hosted by Social Value Thailand and takes place online on 20 and 21 October with the theme of 'Leading our Transition to a Sustainable World'.
While we can get excited about this moment in history being a tipping point, we need to be realistic
Carpenter (pictured top) said that although international institutions, governments and business were now talking about accounting for value and sustainability, there was still a long way to go.
“While we can get excited about this moment in history being a tipping point, we need to be realistic,” he said.
A transition was taking place, but there still needed to be a big leap forward. “We need a paradigm shift,” he said.
He urged delegates to consider two questions during this transition: what opportunities were available, and what risks they were willing to take.
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He added that this transition phase required courage from those at the top.
“The world’s leaders need to be brave and show leadership,” he said.
Igniting social value leadership at all levels
Sakulthip Keeratiphanthawong, executive director of Social Value Thailand and B Corp Thailand, said the movement had been growing in Thailand since Social Value Thailand was founded in 2017. “We are igniting social value leadership at all levels,” she said.
“I urge all of you to be a leader in this transition to a sustainable world,” she said. “This is a huge privilege in our lives.”
She said she wanted accounting for value to be “at the heart of decision-making” to confront the global crisis, and that it should be “the new normal”.
Why the United Nations isn't neutral
Giving the event’s first keynote address, Renaud Meyer, the resident representative of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Thailand, emphasised that the concept of value underpinned the work of the United Nations.
“People say that the UN is neutral. No, we are not. People say that it doesn’t have an agenda. Yes, we do,” he said.
The UN’s internationally-ratified treaties gave it an agenda and values, he said.
He called for sustainable and value-based development after the pandemic. “We cannot build back better,” he said. “We had it wrong. We need to build forward better. The models we were using were not sustainable.”
“A new era requires a new way to account for value,” he added.
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