Today was one of those unique conference experiences where with each speaker I felt that I was being challenged, that when the presentations ended I wanted to hear more, to ask questions and to be able to explore each of the positions presented in greater detail. Not only were the academic presentations facinating and challenging but I found myself looking forward to the commentary that was provided at the end of each session by a leading practitioner within the co-operative movement. I was inspired and impressed time and time again by tithe sincerity and reflection that each person put into their remarks.
My colleagues have written some great posts today sharing there different thoughts and reflections and as I reflect on the day I would like to focus on one session in partical- the presentation by Dr. Ron Colman on the genuine progress indicator.
The concept of changing our model of accounting to the GPI-genuine progress indicator that shifts the accounting system to include and be able to attribute a value to the financial, plus human, social and ecological benefits is quite fascinating. This concept of ‘full-cost accounting’ seems like a method that co-operatives would be well structured to adopt, especially if through the methodology we where able to generated a quantitative value for the ways in which the co-operative values and principles are integrated into the operations of the co-operative enterprise. I follow how this form of accounting can attribute value to organizational practices like giving employees a couple of work days each year to be able to volunteer but what I am still trying to understand is how a numeric/monetary value can be attributed to the intangibles. So I started thinking about the volunteer roles that I have, the one that came to mind is my role as a pace group leader for the marathon clinic at the Running Room. So you can attribute a value for the time i spend out running with the group but I am curious how you attribute a value to the betterment of my well-being as a result of running, and the value of the social support and friendships that emerge from the group. It has captured my interest and I will be doing more research to better understand all aspects of the concept.
I welcome the input and reflections of others and look forward to another day of learning and critical reflection.
– Tanya Gracie
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