By Adam Beck, Director of Innovation
Next Generation Leadership Recognition and Industry Collaboration
Imagine if urban regeneration project certification schemes were redefined, to extend beyond acknowledging leadership to forever changing how urban regeneration gets done. Imagine if certification became a platform where practitioners and city makers came to share, learn, explore and thrive — a certification scheme where sharing was the new norm and transparency was at the heart.
Welcome to EcoDistricts Certification
Scheduled for global launch in mid 2016, EcoDistricts Certification is a first-of-its-kind, process-based urban development standard that empowers practitioners at all stages of neighborhood-scale project design to achieve scalable outcomes in equity, resilience and climate protection. Thanks to education session sponsor, Lend Lease, we announced our pending launch to a sold-out audience November 19 at Greenbuild, the world’s largest gathering of urban change makers.
EcoDistricts Protocol, set for release February 2016, powers the EcoDistricts Certification and is set to be one of the world’s first process management frameworks for delivering integrated sustainable development projects that deeply embed equity, resilience and climate protection outcomes. It’s process management focus builds on the critical understanding that good outcomes require a good process. By rewarding upstream performance — particularly around collaboration and governance — the best conditions for successful project implementation are put in place early and often.
Why is EcoDistricts Certification a critical tool for city makers?
Practitioners across our industry are continually challenged to achieve substantial, scalable outcome gains across equity, resilience and sustainability, but lack the necessary process, guidance and resources to achieve them. No process-based tool for sustainable neighborhood development currently exists in the marketplace. EcoDistricts Certification rewards and accelerates industry leadership and innovation by offering a certification system where collaboration, peer learning and transparency are commonplace.
We’ll be the first in our industry to make content and information sharing a core part of our certification process. The EcoDistricts Information Exchange will house accessible project deliverables and a crowd-driven library of practitioner resources designed to propel continued innovation. The Exchange will provide a platform for continual learning among peers, helping push each project and team to continually build their knowledge and advance their practice.
For a project team and their project, EcoDistricts Certification will represent:
- An unwavering commitment to equity, resilience and climate protection outcomes
- A deep embodiment of collective impact theory
- Transparency in process
- Comprehensiveness in approach
- Embracing collaborative governance as a means of lasting change
- Investment decisions with embedded metrics
- A resilient roadmap of sustainability investments
Also announced at Greenbuild is EcoDistricts Accreditation, a critical supporting infrastructure to EcoDistricts Certification. Accreditation will help propel team and practitioner capacity in: engagement and collaboration practices; creating governance arrangements; developing comprehensive investment roadmaps; and establishing frameworks for ongoing project performance monitoring and reporting.
The famous American author and political activist Helen Keller once said, “Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much.” EcoDistricts Certification embraces this notion of collaboration and harnesses the power of transparency and sharing. The time has come for certification schemes to drive knowledge sharing instead of knowledge capture. Collective Impact is at the heart of the EcoDistricts Protocol, and EcoDistricts Certification will maintain this tradition of deep collaboration as a key to advancing vibrant, thriving neighborhoods for all.
Pre-register your EcoDistricts certified project — Simply complete our form to pre-register your project. You will be added to our mailing list to receive exclusive alerts as we launch our EcoDistricts Certification program and project registry globally.