After eight years of promoting ISO 26000 the two ISO member bodies Sweden (SIS) and Brazil (ABNT) disbanded the ISO 26000 Post Publication Organization mid July 2018. The decision was a simple budget issue: stakeholders gladly invest in developing new things but are less keen on maintaining existing things.Without new funds SIS decided to no longer carry the main secretary function. ISO 26000 PPO was a catalytic semi-formal ISO body set up voluntarily by two ISO members Sweden and Brazil. As PPO was not a ISO Technical Committee it can be disbanded without replacement or ISO-decisions.
Between 2010-2018 the members of the PPO leadership (SIS and ABNT), the PPO SAG (stakeholder advisory group) and PPO NIN (NSB information Network) carried out many surveys to the 160+ country members of ISO, responded to two systematic reviews of ISO 26000, arranged conferences, and developed several catalytic linkage documents to other important SR/CSR initiatives. The number of meetings, lectures, articles, books, Q&As, practical use, delivered by the individuals that were of PPO, PPO SAG and PPO NIN – and the national committees – are endless.
Disbanding ISO 26000 PPO has a few consequences:
1. As there is no PPO/SAG/NIN, there are no longer any PPO-representatives. All titles should, , e.g. PPO Chair, Vice Chair, Secretary, Co-Secretary, PPO SAG member, PPO SAG Stakeholder representative, only be used in a new in a revised socially responsible manner: Example: “Former Vice Chair ISO 26000 PPO” or “Vice Chair ISO 26000 PPO 2010-2018”.
2. Questions are answered by ISO CS, ISO TMB and the NSBs. ISO 26000 is, as before and some 40 (of 20,000) ISO-deliverables, formally managed directly under ISO TMB. Any global/regional questions related to ISO 26000 will now be sent to ISO Central Secretariat (e.g. through https://www.iso.org/sr ) and to ISO TMB. Regional/Local questions are handled by NSBs.
3. The systematic review of ISO 26000 (every 3-5 years) will be carried out by TMB 3-5 years after 2017. This means sending oput survey to the ISO membership and analyzing the results to make a decision on whether ISO 26000 is to be kept as is, revised, or cancelled.
4. Linkage documents from ISO 26000 PPO will not be updated unless and until a new ISO 26000 is formed and recognized. This also means that the important and planned new linkage document between ISO 26000 and the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights is on hold.
ISO26000.info will not be affected. ISO 26000 was written by thousands of experts from at least 100 countries and the stakeholders will likely self-organise to continue to catalyze social responsbility for all through ISO 26000.
In any event, the future of global social responsibility is so bright we all need to wear sunglasses – produced in a socially responsible manner of course, maximizing the contribution to sustainable environmental, social and economic development.