How was GIN created?
Our first conference in November 1991 marked the official launch of the Greening of Industry Network. Planning started in October 1989 with two researchers with common interests, Kurt Fischer and Johan Schot, and subsequent establishment of GIN programs at two universities, in the US and the Netherlands. They convened an advisory board, raised seed funding, and made plans for projects based on a ten-year series of conferences with linked publications and communications. In 1996, Theo de Bruijn joined as coordinator, replacing Johan Schot. In 1998 a GIN program in Asia was established at Chulalongkorn University in Thailand with Somporn Kamolsiripichaiporn as GIN coordinator. January 2001 marked the launch of GIN's Second Decade.
By what authority did you create the Network?
We saw unfilled needs to do a better job of connecting research, policy, and practice; to build connections across professional, disciplinary, and national boundaries; to bring together fragmented knowledge; and to stimulate discussion and research on sustainable development — to align industrial development policies with sustainable development goals.
How is the Network managed?
GIN management is decentralized, with regional coordinators working together to pursue the GIN mission, with the help of the GIN International Planning Board. Planning board members serve on working groups, and the working group chairs and the GIN coordinators serve as the Network steering committee.
Is GIN a separate institute or corporation?
GIN affairs are managed cooperatively, as a consortium of university-based programs, by the regional program offices. While we have considered the creation of a supra-regional GIN, a formal society, or of an incorporated association, we see that as an unnecessary additional expense and administrative layer at this time.
Who's who, and who does what?
The GIN coordinators work together on an equal footing, along with the help of the planning board, to carry out the GIN Mission and projects. Beyond the GIN coordinators, most of the work is carried out by volunteers from the planning board and others, with graduate students, and with logistical support from our host institutes. In 2004, four working groups were created to focus attention on particular activities.
How do you make decisions? How are projects designed?
The coordinators set the agenda, solicit the advice of the planning board, consult with the steering committee, and make decisions in accordance with the principles and goals of the GIN Mission and Second Decade Plan. The GIN coordinators and the working group chairs constitute the GIN steering committee. Planning has begun for launching GIN's third decade.
Do you survey GIN participants and members for their views?
Yes. Beyond working with the 50-member planning board, we make regular surveys of participants' views. For example, in each of our conferences, we devote at least one major session to the mission and direction of GIN, and we obtain conference evaluations from delegates. GIN regional workshops are another vehicle for obtaining user views and input. In the mid-1990s, we undertook a project to build a research and action agenda, convening workshops and interviewing individuals. In the late 1990s, we cooperated with General Motors R&D to conduct a global survey of views and trends in sustainable development. In 1999, we began an 18-month process of planning for GIN's Second Decade, convening scenario teams and conducting workshops. The results of all of these projects are documented and posted at http://www.greeningofindustry.org/publications.html. In late 2007 we conducted a survey of the GIN community evaluating our programs and progress.
How do you communicate with GIN participants and the public?
We use email postings of the GINnews to our email distribution list and maintain a public Web page at www.greeningofindustry.org. Over 200 other Web pages link to the GIN Web page.
How was the GIN Planning Board created?
In the beginning, we invited ten people who were working in the field, either known to us or recommended to us as interested in building bridges across disciplines and national boundaries in pursuit of sustainable development. Planning board members have been added to cover a variety of disciplines, professions and regions; they are often drawn from among our most active volunteers. They serve three-year, renewable terms as invited by the GIN coordinators.
How are business matters conducted?
Business transactions of taking in and disbursing funds and entering into agreements are conducted through the not-for-profit university host institutes of the GIN coordinators, and in the case of conferences and workshops, through the host institutes and universities of our meeting partners.
Where does the funding come from?
Funds are solicited from government, business, individuals, and foundations to support GIN activities. A list of funding sources since 1991 may be found at GIN Sponsors.
How does one make a proposal for a GIN project or conference?
Brief pre-proposals of one or two pages of project descriptions may be sent to any of the GIN coordinators. Activities must fit within the goals of the GIN Mission and the Second Decade Plan. Proposals must describe goals, nature of the activity, timetable, staffing, institutional backing and support, and, since GIN is not a funding agency, evidence of full financial support.
Will you launch GIN's Third Decade in 2011?
We welcome your support and participation in continuing the work of the Greening of Industry Network!