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Tuesday, August 28, 2012

An Integrated Approach to Sustainability

Elemental Impact programs take a holographic approach to discovering solutions where all parties, including the environment, benefit.  As Ei's zero waste foundation expands into Toxin-Free Environments and Product Stewardship, health economics is a natural segue to further explore program impact.

According to Wikipedia, health economics is defined as "a branch of economics concerned with issues related to efficiency, effectiveness, value and behavior in the production and consumption of health and health care. In broad terms, health economists study the functioning of the health care systems as well as health-affecting behaviors such as smoking."

Susan Montgomery
Adding health economics to Ei's solid business sense approach is a powerful formula for creating systems where the global community benefits, including the population sector living in impoverished conditions.  Susan Montgomery, Ei program director, is the driving force for the health economics filter within existing and developing programs.

Under Susan's stewardship, Ei plans to work with complementary non-profits and government agencies to determine the health impact and benefits within our program implementation.  Ei will retain the three-tier program foundation structure:
  • First, Safety - food, personal, or health safety is maintained or improved.
  • Second, Solid business sense - from a holographic standpoint, including tangible and intangible costs | benefits, the end result must improve the bottom line (or least be neutral)  for the individual business and the community as a whole.
  • Third, Smooth implementation - business operations may not be disrupted. Thus, program stages and phases let operators implement new procedures with baby steps.
In addition to her excellent organizational skills, Susan has an impressive academic resume. From an educational standpoint, Susan earned a MBA from Boston University with a focus in Environmental Development after her undergraduate studies at Dartmouth College.  Respected among peers in the public health arenas, Susan was a guest lecturer in November, 2011 at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health  in their program on Global Sustainability and Health.

Susan with posters in Zurcih
In July, 2012 two of Susan's poster presentations were selected for display at the European Health Economics Conference"Progress in Health Economics:  9th European Conference on Health Economics,held at the University of Zurich.  The poster-style articles presented were:
When not orchestrating Ei's programs, Susan is busy with her own company, Health Comes First!!!, where health | environmental issues are analyzed via a systems-based approach.  Using the "Cousin Industry Analysis" format, three non-related industries  - food, energy and health - are brought together for simultaneous review. The goal is to reduce illness and climate impacts prior to occurrence. 

While bringing a health perspective to Ei initiatives, Susan plans to encourage health economics professionals to integrate sustainability into their platforms.  The tagline to Ei's Sustainable Food Court Initiative, An Integrated Approach to Sustainability, seems to encapsulate Ei's expanded directions.  Thank you Susan for bringing the health perspective to Ei!

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