Sustainability, Leadership and Decision Making: Learning from Failures and Successes

An opportunity to share experiences, dialogue, and deepen understanding on core sustainability values and principles.

14 - 18 November 2016

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About this Program

This programme will look at the kinds of leadership and ethical approaches required to realize the Earth Charter sustainability vision and contribute to the common good. It will address dilemmas in decision making through the lenses of the Earth Charter, and offer an opportunity to share experiences, dialogue, and deepen understanding on core sustainability values and principles. This programme will also look and the new United Nations 2030 Development agenda and collaborative ways to make it reality.


Senior managers from the public and private sector, local and national government officials, university and educational institution managers.


Based on a participatory and collective learning approach, this programme will use a combination of presentations, sharing of experiences, dialogue, role play, and analyses on theory and practices, as well as space for deepening reflection through cases and group exercises.

By taking part in this programme you will have the opportunity to expand your knowledge and experience of:


  1. Deeping perception for forecasting and planning preventive measures: taking on the challenge of reading between the lines.
  2. The case of ethical leadership: “nothing is impossible, particularly when it is inevitable”.
  3. Brilliant failures and successes: learning from your own and others’ experiences.
  4. Creating synergies and complementary objectives: the new challenge of multi-stakeholder, public-private partnerships, coalitions.
  5. Integrated multi-stakeholder thinking, acting, and reporting (stakeholder and public accountability): a new paradigm.
  6. Values, governance, accountability, and real (“true”) prices at the core of positive change.
  7. The internalization-rate of all natural and social externalities into product prices, company values, and public policies.
  8. The financial sector as driver of transformative change.
  9. From “accidental pain to systemic gain”.
  10. The new United Nations 2030 Agenda – Sustainable Development Goals and the Earth Charter: making it real.
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November 14 – 18


Earth Charter Center for Education for Sustainable Development
University for Peace
El Rodeo, San José 10701
Costa Rica


Phone +506 2205-9060

Programme Cost


Programme cost includes program materials, refreshments, lunch, local transport and certificate of completion. 30% discount for groups of 3 or more. Partial scholarships are available!

Questions? Write to us at: apply [@] earthcharter dot org


Herman_Mulder Herman Mulder is a former senior executive vice-president of the ABN AMRO, where he was also the Founder and Chairman of the ABN AMRO Foundation, the initiator of the Equator Principles and Head of Group Risk Management & Sustainability. He is former Chairman of the board of directors of the Global Reporting Initiative and member of the board of the Dutch National Contact Point (NCP) of the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises. Mulder worked for many years in the field of finance and business in The Netherlands and also worked in the field of livelihood development finance in India and Brazil, where he gained insights into the global value chain and the positive effects companies can have on people living in lower income countries. He is currently Chairman Board True Price Foundation ( and of the Worldconnectors; member Board NCP-NL; Executive Fellow Duisenberg School of Finance; Advisory Board TEEB; co-leader of the Dutch private sector SDG Charter Coalition.

mirian-vilela-2015 Mirian Vilela is the Executive Director of the Earth Charter International Secretariat and the Center for Education for Sustainable Development at UPEACE. Mirian has been working with the Earth Charter Initiative since early 1996. She is coordinating the newly established UNESCO Chair on Education for Sustainable Development with the Earth Charter. She is also a member of the UNESCO Expert Reference Group for the Decade of Education for Sustainable Development (DESD) and has been a visiting professor on Sustainable Development at the University for Peace since 2005. Over the years she has lead and facilitated numerous international workshops, courses, and seminars on values and principles for sustainability. Mirian holds a Master´s Degree in Public Administration from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, where she was an Edward Mason Fellow. She is originally from Brazil.

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About the Earth Charter Center for ESD

Course participants will receive the added benefit of learning about sustainability values in Costa Rica, a country that has received ongoing praise for its commitment to environmental sustainability. The course is taught at the Earth Charter Center for Education for Sustainable Development on a natural reserve in El Rodeo, Costa Rica. The Center is on the campus for the UN-mandated University for Peace, which is located on one of the largest natural reserves in the Costa Rican Central Valley.

About the Earth Charter

In 2004, UNESCO adopted a Resolution (Reference 32C/17) which includes the following:

  • Recognize the Earth Charter as an important ethical framework for sustainable development, and acknowledge its ethical principles, its objectives and its contents, as an expression that coincides with UNESCO’s vision set forth in its Medium-Term Strategy for 2002-2007.
  • Affirm the Member States’ intention to utilize the Earth Charter as an educational tool, particularly in the framework of the United Nations Decade of Education for Sustainable Development.

Accommodations and Payment

The cost of lodging varies between US $50 to US $115 per day. These are special prices offered to our organization. Once you have registered for the course we will help you with the process of choosing and booking the hotel. If you prefer, we can also provide lodging with a Costa Rican family living around the nearby town of Ciudad Colón.

The tuition fee must be paid at least two weeks before starting the course. If you must cancel, please contact us. *Receive a 10% discount when you pay two months in advance.

Programme Cancellation and Travel Insurance

If the program is canceled or postponed, you will be refunded 100% of the money paid for tuition. The Earth Charter International and the Earth Charter Center for ESD are not responsible for any other costs, including reimbursement of the cost of air tickets.

Participants must travel with medical and life insurance. The Earth Charter International and the Earth Charter Center for ESD are not responsible for covering any possible medical treatment.

About the UNESCO Chair

The Earth Charter Center for ESD is coordinating the UNESCO Chair on Education for Sustainable Development. Our goal is to help educators integrate the values inherent in sustainable development into all aspects of learning so it encourages change in behavior that allow for a more sustainable and just society for all.

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