Categoriearchief: Ecosystem City Canon

Nørby Committee’s Report

Copenhagen Stock Exchange | 2001

Following the release of the Cadbury report in 1992, Denmark formulated their recommendations for good corporate governance. In 2001 The Nørby Committee’s Report on Corporate Governance in Denmark was published.

“Over the past 15-20 years, the international arena has witnessed a significant public debate about which major principles should be employed to govern companies. The general term for these principles is corporate governance, a concept that is difficult to translate into Danish. In our opinion the concept can be defined as:

“The goals, according to which a company is managed, and the major principles and frameworks which regulate the interaction between the company’s managerial bodies, the owners as well as other parties, who are directly influenced by the company’s dispositions and business (in this context jointly referred to as the company’s stakeholders). Stakeholders include employees, creditors, suppliers, customers and the local community.””

The report formulates the recommendation (p. 15, part 2 of the report) to build risk management as an integral part of good governance.

“Efficient risk management is a prerequisite for the board being able to perform the tasks for which it is responsible in the best possible way. Thus it is important that the board ensures that there are appropriate systems for risk management in place and, moreover, ensures that such systems meet the requirements of the company at any time. The purpose of risk management is: 

  • To develop and maintain an understanding within the organisation of the company’s strategic and operational goals, including identification of the critical success factors. 
  • To analyse these possibilities and challenges, which are connected with the realisation of the above goals and to analyse the risk of these goals not being met. 
  • To analyse the most important activities of the company in order to identify the risks attached hereto.

Risk management also focuses on procedures for damage control, the formation of contracts, safety at work, environmental issues and safeguarding physical values. It is recommended that the board ensures that the management establishes efficient risk management systems and that the board continuously follows up on these in order to ensure that they always work efficiently in the light of the company’s requirements. As required, but at least once a year, the board should evaluate the company’s risk management and by establishing the risk policy, decide on the company’s risk-taking including insurance, currency and investment policies. 

The risk management system must define the risk and describe how this risk is eliminated, controlled or hedged on a continuous basis. In that connection the board should consider how any collaboration with the company’s external audit could contribute to the risk management and to what extent the internal audit could be part of the risk management.”


Nørby Committee (2001) Corporate Governance in Denmark: recommendations for good corporate governance in Denmark. Copenhagen: Copenhagen Stock Exchange.

This publication is part of Ecosystem City: Lessons from the Forest

The UK Government Resilience Framework

HM Government, Cabinet Office | 2022

The professionalism and commitment of the people who contribute to the UK’s resilience is extraordinary, and we have a well-established framework for civil protection in the UK. But the last few years have exposed the need to build on these strong foundations and strengthen our resilience to prevent better, mitigate, respond to and recover from the nation’s risks. That is why the UK Government committed, in the Integrated Review, to a new Resilience Strategy: The UK Government Resilience Framework (pdf) or online.

The framework is the first articulation of how the UK Government will deliver on a new strategic approach to resilience. It is based on three core principles:

  • A developed and shared understanding of our civil contingencies risks is fundamental.
  • Prevention rather than cure wherever possible: a greater emphasis on preparation and prevention.
  • Resilience is a ‘whole of society’ endeavour, so we must be more transparent and empower everyone to make a contribution.

This framework focuses on the foundational building blocks of resilience, setting out the plan for 2030 to strengthen the frameworks, systems and capabilities which underpin the UK’s resilience to all civil contingencies risks. The framework’s implementation window reflects the UK Government’s long-term commitment to the systemic changes needed to strengthen resilience over time and matches the commitments made in the Integrated Review. Delivery has already begun, and we are making quick progress on our commitments, with 12 expected to be completed by 2025. This framework represents a package of measures to broaden and strengthen the resilience system centred on six themes:

  • Risk.
  • Responsibility and accountability.
  • Partnership.
  • Community.
  • Investment.
  • Skills.

For each theme, this framework aims to demonstrate how our proposals will deliver tangible changes and benefits for those working in the resilience system and the public.

From Annex D. Acronyms and definitions

Crisis: An event or series of events that represents a critical threat to the health, safety, security, or well-being of a community or other large group of people, usually over a wider area.

Resilience: The ability to anticipate, assess, prevent, mitigate, respond to, and recover from natural hazards, deliberate attacks, geopolitical instability, disease outbreaks, and other disruptive events, civil emergencies or threats to our way of life.

RiskAn event, person or object which could cause loss of life or injury, damage to infrastructure, social and economic disruption or environmental degradation.

Oliver Dowden, Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster: “These are unsettled and troubling times. Russia’s brutal invasion of Ukraine; the wide-ranging impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic; increasing signs of the impact of climate change; and constant and evolving cyber challenges are recent examples of an evolving threat picture.

We live in an increasingly volatile world, defined by geopolitical and geoeconomic shifts, rapid technological change and a changing climate. This context means that crises will have far-reaching consequences and are likely to be greater in frequency and scale in the next decade than we have been used to. We have a responsibility to prepare for this future.

This challenge is not unique to the United Kingdom but faced by countries around the world. However, we must act now to bolster the United Kingdom’s resilience and ensure we have plans to prepare for and mitigate a wide range of risks when they arise on our shores, ensuring we can face the future confidently.

We have bold and comprehensive plans to build resilience to specific risks. We have launched our Net Zero Strategy, the National Cyber Strategy and the British Energy Security Strategy, all of which tackle some of the most pressing challenges we face. We are also refreshing our Integrated Review to ensure that the UK’s security, defence, development and foreign policy strategy keeps pace with the evolving environment.

But alongside these plans, we must strengthen the underpinning systems that provide our resilience to all risks. This UK Government Resilience Framework is our plan to achieve this… This Framework is a broad and tangible set of actions. It is the first step in our commitment to develop a wide and strategic approach to resilience. We are committed to working with partners, industry and academia from across the UK to implement this Framework but also as we continue to develop our approach.

A strong resilience system – including UK Government departments, devolved administrations, local authorities, emergency services and the private and voluntary and community sectors – is more important than ever.

Working together to build our national resilience will mean we are better equipped to tackle the challenges that come our way, ensuring businesses grow, our communities thrive, and citizens can build a brighter future.”

This publication is part of Ecosystem City: Lessons from the Forest

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

US Government | December 2, 1970

This organisation was founded as an independent executive agency of the United States federal government tasked with environmental protection matters. Beginning in the late 1950s and through the 1960s, US Congress reacted to increasing public concern about the impact that human activity could have on the environment. In 1959 congress passed the Resources and Conservation Act to establish a Council on Environmental Quality in the Executive Office of the President and declared a national environmental policy, which required the preparation of an annual environmental report. The groundwork for the Environment Protection Agency was laid.

The 1962 publication of Silent Spring by Rachel Carson alerted the public about the detrimental effects on the environment of the indiscriminate use of pesticides.

Logo by Chermayeff & Geismar Associates

Steff Geissbühler, partner of Chermayeff & Geismar Associates, about the design process of the 1977 United States Environmental Protection Agency Graphic Standards System:

“Born in the wake of elevated concern about environmental pollution, The United States Environmental Protection Agency was established to unify within one government agency a combination of federal research, monitoring, standard-setting and enforcement activities in order to protect human health and to safeguard the air, water, and land upon which life depends. From regulating car emissions to banning the use of DDT; from cleaning up toxic waste to protecting the ozone layer; from increasing recycling to revitalizing inner-city brownfields, EPA’s achievements have resulted in cleaner air, purer water, and better protected land. That’s how we introduced the project on our project sheet.

I came to the USA from Switzerland in 1967 to teach at the Philadelphia College of Art. It was at first a shock to see trash all over the streets and sidewalks that were littered with chewing gum and cigarette butts, the waste, air and water pollution, pesticide-sprayed fruit and vegetables, and run-down neighborhoods and parks. Richard Nixon, who was later responsible for creating the EPA, was soon elected President. But it was also a time when people all over the world were getting seriously concerned about our planet.

…As the first step, after the extensive audits described in the Foreword, Tom Geismar and myself wanted to shorten the long and complex name to a colloquial acronym. We looked at alternatives but soon understood that the public knew the agency as the EPA and suggested that this should be adapted as a more direct, short and communicative name.

The flower logo or symbol was a carryover from the ’60s “Flower Power” era. I remember very clearly the iconic image of a young hippie girl putting a flower into the business end of a soldier’s machine gun. The center of the existing seal, symbolizing sun, air, water and land, was and is appropriate, but the complex rendition of the flower seemed weak and perhaps too “feminine” to act as the shield of a law-enforcement agency.”

Visit website of Environmental Protection Agency.

This publication is part of Ecosystem City: Lessons from the Forest

Judgment under Uncertainty: Heuristics and Biases

Biases in judgments reveal some heuristics of thinking under uncertainty

Amos Tversky and Daniel Kahneman | 1974

“This article described three heuristics that are employed in making judgments under uncertainty: (i) representativeness, which is usually employed when people are asked to judge the probability that an object or event A belongs to class or process B; (ii) availability of instances or scenarios, which is often employed when people are asked to assess the frequency of a class or the plausibility of a particular development; and (iii) adjustment from an anchor, which is usually employed in numerical prediction when a relevant value is available.

These heuristics are highly economical and usually effective, but they lead to systematic and predictable errors. A better understanding of these heuristics and of the biases to which they lead could improve judgments and decisions in situations of uncertainty.”

ScienceDirect summary:

“Many decisions are based on beliefs concerning the likelihood of uncertain events such as the outcome of an election, the guilt of a defendant, or the future value of the dollar. Occasionally, beliefs concerning uncertain events are expressed in numerical form as odds or subjective probabilities.

In general, the heuristics are quite useful, but sometimes they lead to severe and systematic errors. The subjective assessment of probability resembles the subjective assessment of physical quantities such as distance or size. These judgments are all based on data of limited validity, which are processed according to heuristic rules. However, the reliance on this rule leads to systematic errors in the estimation of distance.

This chapter describes three heuristics that are employed in making judgments under uncertainty. The first is representativeness, which is usually employed when people are asked to judge the probability that an object or event belongs to a class or event. The second is the availability of instances or scenarios, which is often employed when people are asked to assess the frequency of a class or the plausibility of a particular development, and the third is adjustment from an anchor, which is usually employed in numerical prediction when a relevant value is available.”

Read article (Source: TU Delft OpenCourseWare)

Judment under Incertainty


Tversky, A. and Kahneman, D. (1974) Judgment under Uncertainty: Heuristics and Biases: Biases in judgments reveal some heuristics of thinking under uncertainty. Science, Vol 185, Issue 4157, pp. 1124-1131. DOI: 10.1126/science.185.4157.1124

This publication is part of Ecosystem City: Lessons from the Forest

Silent Spring

Rachel Carson | 1962
This sensational book, Silent Spring (1962) by Rachel Carson, warned of the dangers to all natural systems from the misuse of chemical pesticides such as DDT, and questioned the scope and direction of modern science, initiating the contemporary environmental movement.

Silent Spring began with a “fable for tomorrow” – a true story using a composite of examples drawn from many real communities where the use of DDT had caused damage to wildlife, birds, bees, agricultural animals, domestic pets, and even humans. Carson used it as an introduction to a very scientifically complicated and already controversial subject. This “fable” made an indelible impression on readers and was used by critics to charge that Carson was a fiction writer and not a scientist.

Silent Spring, the winner of 8 awards*, is the history-making bestseller that stunned the world with its terrifying revelation about our contaminated planet. No science-fiction nightmare can equal the power of this authentic and chilling portrait of the unseen destroyers which have already begun to change the shape of life as we know it.

“Silent Spring is a devastating attack on human carelessness, greed and irresponsibility. It should be read by every American who does not want it to be the epitaph of a world not very far beyond us in time.” -Saturday Review

*Awards received by Rachel Carson for this book:

    • The Schweitzer Medal (Animal Welfare Institute)
    • The Constance Lindsay Skinner Achievement Award for merit in the realm of books (Women’s National Book Association)
    • Award for Distinguished Service (New England Outdoor Writers Association)
    • Conservation Award for 1962 (Rod and Gun Editors of Metropolitan Manhattan)
    • Conservationist of the Year (National Wildlife Federation)
    • 1963 Achievement Award (Albert Einstein College of Medicine — Women’s Division)
    • Annual Founders Award (Isaak Walton League)
    • Citation (International and U.S. Councils of Women)

President Jimmy Carter posthumously awarded Carson the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

‘Silent Spring’ inspired the modern environmental movement, which began in earnest a decade later. It is recognized as the environmental text that “changed the world.”

Serialised in three parts in The New Yorker, where President John F. Kennedy read it in the summer of 1962, Silent Spring was published in August and became an instant best-seller and the most talked about book in decades. Utilising her many sources in federal science and private research, Carson spent over six years documenting her analysis that humans were misusing powerful, persistent chemical pesticides before knowing the full extent of their potential harm to the whole biota. Read more




Carson, R. (1962) Silent Spring. Boston, Massachusetts, United States: Houghton Mifflin.

Carson, R. (2002) Silent Spring: The classic that launched the environmental movement [anniversary edition]. Boston, Massachusetts, United States: Houghton Mifflin Company.

Quotes from Silent Spring (source: goodreads).

This publication is part of Ecosystem City: Lessons from the Forest

Mercy Mercy Me (The Ecology)

Marvin Gaye | 1971

Woah, ah, mercy, mercy me
Ah, things ain’t what they used to be (ain’t what they used to be)
Where did all the blue skies go?
Poison is the wind that blows
From the north and south and east

Woah, ah, mercy, mercy me
Ah, things ain’t what they used to be (ain’t what they used to be)
Where did all the blue skies go?
Poison is the wind that blows
From the north and south and east

Woah mercy, mercy me, yeah
Ah, things ain’t what they used to be (ain’t what they used to be)
Oil wasted on the ocean and upon our seas
Fish full of mercury

Oh Jesus, yeah, mercy, mercy me, ah
Ah, things ain’t what they used to be (ain’t what they used to be)
Radiation underground and in the sky
Animals and birds who live nearby are dying

Hey, mercy, mercy me, oh
Hey, things ain’t what they used to be
What about this overcrowded land?
How much more abuse from man can she stand?

Oh, na, na, na
Oh, oh, oh, oh, oh
Hey, ooh, woo


Gaye, M. (1971) Mercy Mercy Me (The Ecology). Album: What’s Goin on. Detroit: Motown.

This publication is part of Ecosystem City: Lessons from the Forest

Think Tank ‘From Global to Local’

PRIMO and UDITE | 2013

Gérard Combe and Jack Kruf, both board members of the international PRIMO Europe association, coined in Brussels the idea to bring global developments to local governments via a think tank concept. It was elaborated and applied in close cooperation with Ronny Frederickx (UDITE) and Eric Frank (PRIMO Nederland). It was agreed it would be a formal collaboration were content meets craftsmanship.

The Federation of European Local Government Chief Executives (UDITE), the foremost professional network for Chief Executives and senior managers in the public sector in Europe and PRIMO Europe, the leading international network for the development of products and the dissemination of knowledge and strategic risk management information for the local government sector and the public sector in Europe, actually joined forces to launch the Think Tank ‘From Global to Local’. It is considered as a formal common project of both organisations.

The first Think Tank was organised for in Amsterdam in 2014, this in close cooperation with Eric Frank, director of PRIMO Nederland.

The purpose of this project is to promote and encourage a greater understanding and exchange of knowledge, ideas and expertise on the impact of global public risks on local communities and cities.

The Think Tank was actively introduced and promoted throughout the PRIMO Europe and UDITE networks in Belgium, Denmark, France, Ireland, Malta, Norway, Portugal, Spain, The Netherlands and United Kingdom.

This initiative is focused on local strategic governance and the management of public values and risks. It is set to develop and enhance the ingenuity and resourcefulness of local communities and cities across Europe in general and the management by local government chief executives and senior professionals in particular.

The Think Tank has initially been inspired by the yearly Global Risks Reports of the World Economic Forum, and was strongly motivated by the knowledge that in the view of PRIMO Europe and UDITE, global risks are not that well connected with and embedded in local public governance.

The Think Tank was designed with the specific purpose of raising awareness of the relevance, knowledge and practice of strategic risk management as a an integral part of good public governance, and involving much more than preventing losses and reducing costs. The results are suggestions for concrete action for governance and management.

The Think Tank incorporates a set of round tables with a selected group of representatives from government, non-government, business and science. The results are internationally presented and published on website and media. Both organisations did seek partnerships with selected public organisations and business partners to develop a high standard of dialogue and reporting.

This publication is part of the web-book Public Risk Canon

Creating Public Value

Strategic management in government

Mark H. Moore | 1995

Public Value is a theory for public management advanced by Professor Mark Moore of the Harvard Kennedy School of Government. Over the previous two decades, staff and students at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, where Moore taught, engaged in conversations about producing excellence in public management.

“Public value refers to the value created by the government through laws, regulations, services and any other action. In a democratic society, this value is defined by the public themselves. Value is determined by citizens preferences expressed in a variety of ways and thus it provides a rough yard stick against which to gauge the public institutions and government policies.”

A seminal figure in the field of public management, Mark Moore presents his summation of fifteen years of research, observation, and teaching about what public sector executives should do to improve the performance of public enterprises.

Useful for both practising public executives and those who teach them, this book explicates some of the richest of several hundred cases used at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government and illuminates their broader lessons for government managers.

Moore addresses four questions that have long bedevilled public administration: What should citizens and their representatives expect and demand from public executives? What sources can public managers consult to learn what is valuable for them to produce? How should public managers cope with inconsistent and fickle political mandates? How can public managers find room to innovate?

Moore’s answers respond to the well-understood difficulties of managing public enterprises in modern society by recommending specific, concrete changes in the practices of individual public managers: how they envision what is valuable to produce, how they engage their political overseers, and how they deliver services and fulfil obligations to clients.

Following Moore’s cases, we witness dilemmas faced by a cross-section of public managers from the Environmental Protection Agency, the Department of Youth Services, the Park Plaza Redevelopment Project, the swine flu scare, the Houston Police Department, and the Boston Housing Authority. Their work and Moore’s analysis reveal how public managers can achieve their true goal of producing public value.


Moore, M. (1995) Creating Public Value: Strategic management in government. Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States: Harvard University Press.

Read Chapter 3 (source Harvard University Education)

Moore Mark. Organizational Strategy in the Public Sector In Creating Public Value Strat... 57102


This publication is part of Ecosystem City: Lessons from the Forest