short news from ebbf members


#ebbfgovernance speaker Kurt Specht on Governance in blockchain enabled organizations

Kurt Specht is one of the over 20 speakers at ebbf’s annual international event who will be offering one of a variety of angles and new ideas on the theme of the event: Rethinking Governance ( more info on the event here ) In this article Kurt introduces the theme of his session:

Governance in blockchain enabled organizations

“Distributed Autonomous Organizations, Token Economies and other new type of and communities are based on an emerging technology called the blockchain. Most people know the word blockchain from its most prominent example – Bitcoin – a so-called digital cryptocurrency that recently got quite some attention in the news and media. This popularity is due to two main factors: a) its astronomic increase in value (some of it related to speculation – for example, when exchanged in USD the Bitcoin value is up from a few cents at inception to >$10’000 today) and b) the energy consumption per transaction as the network grows. Currently one Bitcoin transaction requires 240 KWh(1), which is roughly equal to the monthly electricity consumption of a two-person household in Switzerland and sixty times that of a credit card payment.

The Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies have pitfalls as currencies such as their exposure to speculation (same issue that exists with traditional currencies as well), the limitation of the money supply, and the footprint on the environment. The latter is addressed by various projects and developer communities that aim at improving interoperability, scalability and sustainability issues. They are eager to find solutions to these problems making the blockchain a future-proof information technology(2).

However, Bitcoin and its imitators seem to respond to a societal need of freedom from surveillance and control as they can bypass regulations and government authorities. What is the social value to society of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies in their current characteristics and implementation?

Read More …


#ebbfgovernance - Better Listening, Better Decisions, Better Governance: What can 350 years of Quaker Business Method and the latest business thinking teach us?

Eoin McCarthy FIC CMC MBA (Warwick) and Sarah James Wright will be amongst the over 20 speakers at the next ebbf international annual conference #ebbfgovernance and have offered this insightful article for you.

You can still register for the ebbf annual event rethinking governance


“Business that blindly serves its own ends is no longer sustainable from an economic, let alone a ecological standpoint. We need to conduct business with an awareness of its relationship to and impact on the individuals it touches and the communities and ecosystems it is a part of. But how can we determine what is best for the system as a whole? To help us reframe our approach, we can access a range of tools, both time-honoured and modern, that all point to a fresh set of leadership capacities and the value of deep listening.

The idea that business can serve more than its own financial interests isn’t new. The Quaker Business Method has been in use for over 350 years and helps organisations reach decisions that everyone can agree to, without leaving individuals feeling unheard.  Quakers keep on returning to it as a model that works, and now, with increasing attention being paid to diversity, inclusivity, transparency and just process, more and more organisations are becoming interested in this method of conducting business meetings and arriving at decisions.

It’s markedly different from the decision-making taking place in most organisations. Recognising that human beings and all other life and matter are mysteriously interconnected, the primary objective is to seek unity in decisions: to find a way forward that is



#ebbfgovernance - ebbf celebrating women and #genderequality


ebbf board member Wendi Momen is currently in New York, also offering workshops during the United Nation’s annual Commission on the Status of Women, to bring home the realities and possibilities of a gender balanced governance.

Together with Ralph Blundell and Maja Groff she will also offer a keynote during ebbf’s annual conference #ebbfgovernance


She has a broader question for you:

what has been your experience, does anything change when you put feminine leadership in a governance structure?


In the meantime we celebrated just a few of the many ebbf women and their continued impact around the world in ebbf’s last news letter




#ebbfmember Roy Steiner on "learning from the future" and "about Diversity, Equity and Inclusion" at the Omidyar Network

Two very interesting articles from #ebbfmember Roy Steiner caught our attention.
First “Learning from the Future” an exchange with his colleague at the Omidyar Network, Eshanthi Ranasinghe, who worked with The Future Hunters to scan the horizon and develop a report on 10 trends to watch over the coming year. He talked with her about why it’s important to develop this foresight muscle and implications she sees for the field. ( Read Here ).

Roy then shared “5 Lessons learned about Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) at the Omidyar Network” with ideas on various topics such as
(1) Political crises open the door to conversation
(2) Staff knows your organization best
(3) Use peak experiences to build momentum
(4) Resources signal commitment
(5) Use partners to bolster your efforts

You can interact with other similarly inspiring people at #ebbfgovernance ebbf’s next international event


It's St.Valentines day ... take this opportunity to interact with #ebbfgovernance keynoters

What are the best ways to structure the governance of my organization to both thrive in these complex times but also be part of a movement that is building the new world order?

Sounds like a big question but we have a great group of people that want to explore just this, and some ideas and new ways of seeing governance that we can start to experiment with.

The 14th of February is St. Valentines day and we thought we’d celebrate by offering you a unique opportunity to interact with #ebbfgovernance speakers before we hopefully meet in Geneva for the ebbf annual conference dedicated to rethinking governance 




How to make the most of ... an event? #ebbfmember Silvia Ferlito on her learning process after an ebbf event

Silvia Ferlito has now attended the last three ebbf international events and was given the opportunity to present in the last plenary what happened to her when she left the boost of an ebbf event and returned to her office on Monday.
She decided to share how she makes the most of the ideas and inspiration captured to create a positive, and not a depressing, transition back into our working week.

How to…ebbf

“Have you ever asked yourself on how to implement all those inspiring ideas you have heard at the ebbf conference in your day to day work? I have no universal answer. There is many ways. But let me try to run through a process that helped me to make the first step.

In the beginning there is the WHY (Purpose) you attend the conference:
Do you want to be inspired and receive impulses in general for yourself personally or professionally or do you have a concrete topic you are currently working on.

Following the question you will be able to answer is the WHAT you want to achieve (CONTENT).
What are the areas of change in your personal or professional life? What is it about your current project you see needs to be done differently? Who are the people involved? What are the timelines?

The next step is to check HOW you can get support for your journey (ENABLERS)
To change, improve and create it is necessary that you tap into your internal as well as external resources. Internal resources can

Read More …


#ebbfgovernance - what does governance mean to me? new mindsets, a first point of view by Gijs van de Fliert

Governance meaning different things to different people, and rethinking governance being the main theme of the next ebbf international event, we asked Washington-based ebbf member Gijs van de Fliert this question.
Gijs came up with a number of current frameworks that address governance from an old world order mindset: complying and avoiding the negative. The challenge that Gijs offers is how can we transition to a new governance system centred around and inspired by the dignity, respect, equality, and justice of individuals in our workplaces.

Thinking about governance, what words or concepts would come to mind?

“Our governance has always been geared towards avoiding the negative and inappropriate behaviours and outcomes.  The definition of inappropriate has been shifting dramatically in the 21st century.  Although companies instituted moral and ethics programs with codes of conduct and rules, these were often setup to meet the minimum standards of a nation’s rules and regulations.  Often these rules were merely focusing on a code of conduct in business dealings with other institutions.  For example elaborate schemes were set up to prevent corruption practices, such as bribes, fraud, collusion, coercion in public bidding of contracts.

Corporate Governance established the rules of how companies could be governed with separations between management, independent board members and shareholders, with employees often in a more troublesome role of whistleblower.

Emerging from the 20th century came a new risk framework discipline called operational risk management, which tried to

Read More …


#ebbfgovernance - Augusto Lopez-Claros, keynoter at the event shares ideas on nationalism and global governance

Below you can read an extract from a recent article published by #ebbfmember and keynoter at #ebbfgovernance annual conference in May Augusto Lopez-Claros.

“I was a young economist working on the IMF’s Spanish economic team. A challenging time for Spain as it was preparing for entry into the European Union at a time of internal crisis with very high unemployment and major sectors of the economy (e.g. steel, shipbuilding) in crisis due to the emergence of lower cost producers in other parts of the world.


What impressed me the most was the extent to which the prospect of entry into the EU was forcing the government to extend the focus of economic policies beyond issues of macroeconomic stability to the fundamental institutional reforms. I remember, in particular, reforms aimed at liberalizing the inflow of foreign direct investment to facilitate the integration of the Spanish economy with the rest of Europe and, indeed, the world. With massive inflows of non-debt capital would also come know-how that would transform the country’s ageing productive apparatus.


Spain joined the EU on January 1, 1986 and over the next two decades it was one of the best performing economies in Europe. In the years following entry into the EU Spain not only received massive inflows of foreign capital as foreign firms sought to benefit from Spain’s lower labor costs and free access to the large European market, but was also the recipient of large and generous transfers from the EU budget, to finance regional development, including an upgrading of the country’s then decrepit physical infrastructure.

Implicit in all of this was the exercise of an important principle embedded in EU law: the richer member states transfer resources to the poorer members as part of a process of narrowing the income divide among countries and as a result of which intra-country inequality in the EU was reduced in a significant way.

Read More…


What do you have to contribute about rethinking governance? Send your proposal to talk at ebbf's next annual conference


You have until the 30th of November to send your proposal for a keynote or workshop at ebbf’s 28th annual conference.

We already have three outstanding speakers to elevate our thinking and challenge current governance structures to explore new ones, the ideal forms of governance that will allow ethical business to build the future.

We are now offering you the opportunity to either offer a keynote / workshop or to invite a speaker you would like to feature in ebbf’s next annual event taking place in Geneva from the 17th to the 20th of May 2018.

Most of the current systems of governance are either unjust, unfair or unable to adapt to the changing environment we are facing. How can you help us to explore new frameworks for decision-making and action? What personal experiences, new ideas, challenges you might be facing in your company do you wish to present?


30th November 2017



Giving you a taste of the next #discoveringhow podcast episode, dedicated to consultation.

The next episode of ebbf’s #discoveringhow podcast will be dedicated to the topic of consultation . We offer you a preview:

Valerie Arnold, a keynoter at a recent ebbf international event offers us ideas on how to outsmart personal biases to achieve better consultative processes. Considering how many times we are not even aware of those biases, it is more useful to bring them to our attention and explore how we might overcome them.

“If consultation entails considering all points of view without attachment to personal opinion, then it is essential to become aware of the cognitive biases that prevent us from being open and fully detached from personal biases
We all suffer from biases and these prevent an authentic dialogue during a consultation.

But outsmarting our own biases is tough as we are often unaware they exist. Only by challenging our deeply help assumptions, we will allow enquiry to happen.

Egocentrism is a big factor in distorting reality during a consultation and inserting personal biases but even without the ego

Read More …

on twitter

Subscribe to our newsletter

stay up to date with the latest ebbf news