Toward Sustainability:  A Model for Responsible Decision Making

Shaping a sustainable future is the most pressing issue of our time.  To insure the long-term well being of our planet and people, we must consider the environmental, economic and socially just/cultural impacts of our decisions. These realms are interconnected. The issues that challenge our campuses and our communities – growth pressures, financial viability, energy resources, tolerance, affordable housing, employment, loss of biodiversity, preservation of green space, encroachment upon public lands, health – each have at their core these interrelated strands of economic, environmental, and social/cultural factors.  

When we come to understand their interconnectedness, we realize we must problem solve collaboratively and consider data from many sectors to make responsible decisions that are good for the short- and long-term well being of our communities. Diverse stakeholder participation in community problem solving is crucial to achieving the UN Brundtland Commission’s promise of sustainability - “intergenerational fairness.” 

Warren Wilson College’s leadership team – the President’s Advisory Council – has adopted a sustainable decision making process for its short- and long-term planning. Each significant decision made for the College will weigh the environmental, economic, and social/cultural impacts of the options and seek to pursue the most sustainable choices possible.  This process honors our  mission and principles and shapes our fulfillment of  the Talloires Declaration pledge to “create an institutional culture of sustainability.”

                                             Warren Wilson College Copyright 2009