Meeting Sustainability Goals: Voluntary Sustainability Standards and the Role of the Government

Published: October 2016

Authors: Mai-Lan Ha, Jason Morrison, Aimée Hampel-Milagrosa, Pieter Glasbergen, Ulrich Hoffmann, Halina Ward, Norma Tregurtha, and David D’Hollander

Pages: 60



Voluntary Sustainability Standards (VSS) have emerged to specify requirements on a wide range of sustainability metrics, including respect for human rights, workers’ health and safety, a decent income, and environmental degradation. This report, the 2nd Flagship Report of the United Nations Forum on Sustainability Standards (UNFSS), seeks to define the relationship between VSS and public governance processes, in order to produce meaningful and equitable progress towards sustainability across sectors. The report asserts that VSS may play an increasingly important role in complementing governmental engagement towards achieving sustainable development.

Written by the Pacific Institute with guidance from the UNFSS Steering Committee, the report includes commentaries from the Committee on Sustainability Assessment, Rainforest Alliance, the German Development Institute, Maastricht University International Centre for Integrated Assessment and Sustainable Development, the Research Institute on Organic Agriculture, the International Organization for Standardization, and ISEAL Alliance.

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