21 June 2023

We spoke to Jo Shield, Sustainability Lead at whg, ahead of Housing Governance 2023

In your role as Sustainability Lead, what do you view as the connection between good sustainability and good governance?

The two need to go hand in hand. If sustainability is to be embedded into a business s Usual culture then it will require good governance. Governance also allows appropriate oversight and assurance that objectives and targets are being delivered and met.

What does it mean to have a carbon literature workforce? And what did whg do/is doing to achieve this?

Colleagues are empowered to own the change both at home and at work. It provides people with the ability to source factual information and to really understand how to make a difference in a meaningful way.

whg have invested in their own bespoke accredited training programme combining the Carbon Literacy Project’s Social Housing toolkit and our own material. We trained our Senior colleagues first (at their request) so they could lead by example. We now have an offer through out central Learning & Development Service for the 8 hour fully accredited training and a shorter three hour taster session. We have also provided our board colleagues with a bespoke 90 minute session and three of our board have done the full training so are accredited as carbon literate.

We also ran our annual all colleague conference last year themed on carbon literacy so every colleague has received a minimum of one day engaged on this agenda.

Save your spot for Housing Governance 2023

Join us online or in London, 22 June

What do you hope delegates will get out of your session at Housing Governance 2023?

Some assurance that ESG can support the wider embedding of sustainability into the day-to-day. An insight into how to complete a framework in a structured and cohesive way. Reassurance that its not just another tick box index but a meaningful way to bring colleagues along on the broader sustainability journey.

What are you hoping to get out of the conference?

The opportunity to share our experience and learning. Meeting new people and networking.

Jo Shield

Sustainability Lead, Equality Impact Assessment (EIA) Advisor, whg

Jo is a passionate environmentalist with a strong connection to nature underpinned by a history of voluntary work to support human rights.

With more than 25 years working in Environment and Sustainability, she has led on the development and implementation of environmental and sustainability policies and strategy and management systems including energy and zero carbon planning. Projects have included resource efficiency, energy and water reduction, delivering sustainable travel and transport, biodiversity and land management, gardens and landscape.

Jo has worked as an advisor for capital projects and developments to deliver sustainable buildings and appropriate ecology and land management measures. She has a strong track record in navigating services and competing priorities to embed sustainability as business as usual.

As Sustainability Lead at whg Jo is playing a key part in integrating the association’s ESG and developing an innovative strategy to work towards net zero carbon status.

Jo has an MSc in Environmental Management and is a Member to the Institute of Environmental Management & Assessment.

A meaningful way to bring colleagues along on the broader sustainability journey.