Certifications – a good forty years before we started writing about them

Some of us, scholars studying certifications, like to think that our field is very new. Yet, Taylor was writing about certifications a good forty years before we started thinking about them…

Can certifications become the new normal?

Certifications ask customers to meet XYZ requirements. However, for certifications to change entire sectors/industries, one or more of the following things need to happen…

Rapid snapshot of certification in voluntary carbon markets

The shortest summary of my PhD is the following: it’s hard to be a voluntary carbon offset certification! Don’t believe me? Check out the figure below, which shows the total value generated by the most prominent certifications in voluntary carbon markets between the launch of the first fully-fledged certification in the market and the beginning…

The most puzzling [and somewhat ironic] question in carbon markets

Carbon markets date back to the 1960s when Ronald Coase’s idea of a pricing mechanism for the allocation of radio frequencies in the United States (US), which he then applied to questions of public harms such as environmental damages, which saw significant improvement in the context of carbon markets by academics in the late 1960s…

Carbon markets – the simple and the not so simple

Have you ever been told that carbon markets/trading are an inherently complex/complicated topic that only experts understand? Well, you’ve been lied to. Twice! In a single sentence! The first lie is that the matter is inherently complex/complicated. Explaining what carbon trading is, or even what a carbon market entails, is, in fact, surprisingly simple: That’s…

Two certifications you couldn’t avoid even if you wanted to

You may have heard the name ‘ISO’, or perhaps even about the ‘NFPA’, but do you know how much of your life these organisations touch? The (Switzerland-based) International Organization for Standardization (ISO) The quality-oriented ISO 9000 is probably the most well-spread certification in the planet so you may have heard of that one. But the…

Not all standards are certifications – John D Rockefeller

Some of the most visible standards in the world happen to be certifications. A famous case is the International Standarisation Organisation’s (ISO) quality-oriented ISO 9000, probably the most widespread certification scheme in the planet. And yet, not all standards are certifications. But not all standards are certifications. At its core, a process of standardisation is…