Roundtable Investigates Key Sustainability Issues.
By Eric Ricaurte, Rohit Verma, and Glenn Withiam
Monday, 21st January 2013
Many hospitality firms are making every effort to report the status of their sustainability initiatives, but a challenge arises in exactly what to report and how to report it.

As explained in a new proceedings, the 2012 Sustainability Roundtable addressed the many factors connected with sustainability reporting.

The roundtable covered current issues in reporting, benchmarking, the supply chain, and customer sustainability perceptions, as well as innovations in green operations.

"One frustration that we observed for all hospitality firms is that it's impossible to come up with 'one number' for sustainability reporting," said Ricaurte. "Even so, the industry is working diligently to identify the key issues that matter the most to stakeholders. However, each stakeholder has a different focus on sustainability."

Verma added: "A big element in sustainability reporting involves supply-chain issues. Hotels have their own supply chain but they are also part of other companies' supply chains. This becomes very complex. One other point that is critical to remember is that sustainability impacts are not all negative. The hospitality industry uses many inputs to create a major positive economic impact for destinations globally."

The proceedings, "Hospitality Sustainability Reporting: Slow, Steady Progress," by Eric Ricaurte, Rohit Verma, and Glenn Withiam, is available at no charge from the Cornell Center for Hospitality Research (CHR), which produced the roundtable. The sessions were co-chaired by Ricaurte, principal of Greenview, and Verma, a professor of service operations management at the Cornell School of Hotel Administration. Withiam is the CHR's director of publications:


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