The Capitals Approach
The success of organisations around the world is dependent on the value they receive from capitals.
Flourishing communities, strong and resilient social institutions, thriving natural ecosystems and a stable climate underpin economic and societal prosperity.
A capitals approach enables organisations to understand how their success is directly or indirectly underpinned by natural capital, social capital and human capital, empowering them to make decisions that offer the greatest value across all capitals.
The stock of renewable and non-renewable natural resources that combine to yield a flow of benefits to people.
The networks together with shared norms, values and understanding that facilitate cooperation within and among groups.
The knowledge, skills, competencies and attributes embodied in individuals that contribute to improved performance and wellbeing.
The human-made goods and financial assets that are used to produce goods and services consumed by society.
The Protocols are decision-making frameworks that enable organizations to identify, measure and value their impacts and dependencies on natural capital, social capital and human capital.
The Protocols are freely available on creative commons licences. Download them to explore your relationships with the capitals.
The Protocol Framework covers 4 stages focused around the questions Why? What? How? and What Next?
Identify risks and opportunities for your business and stakeholders resulting from your relationships with the capitals and explore how an assessment would be relevant to your decision making.
Identify the objective of your assessment and conduct a materiality process to select the most relevant impacts and dependencies from the perspective of both your business and stakeholders.
Measure & Value (How?)
Use relevant approaches to measure and value the costs and benefits resulting from your material impacts and dependencies on the capitals.
Apply (What Next?)
Interpret, validate and verify your assessment process and results and integrate them into existing business processes to inform decision-making.
Why a capitals approach?
By redefining our understanding of value, a capitals approach enables organisations to deliver multiple benefits for themselves and for the rest of the system they depend upon.
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