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There is sometimes a perception that large organisations don’t listen to criticism from individual members or don’t take practical action based on such criticism. I can now acquit the ICAEW of both of these charges after receiving the following from Andrea Cook, head of Continuing Professional Development and Events Programming:

“Dear Mark,

Thank you for your response. We have taken some time to consider your points further so please forgive me for not coming back to you straightaway.

Based on your feedback we will review the marketing materials for the Sustainability Certificate to ensure it is clear that this is an introduction, something to get one on the journey I agree, this needs to be clear.

To your point about producing further sustainability learning materials, the certificate is the first of what we expect will be a suite of such content. We do not propose changing the name and will keep with “certificate”; however, we will look at including the word “introduction” or equivalent, on the certificate marketing.

While the rest of our sustainability content and events are free, we will continue charging for the certificate. People have a choice and, like you, are free to access learning materials wherever they wish.

Best wishes,


This is to me a model of constructive engagement with criticism, which along with Sarah Reay’s earlier response to my criticism of their decision to invite a member of the UAE delegation to discuss COP27 has greatly enhanced my respect for the Institute’s willingness to listen to and act on criticism and their speed or response, particularly as both Andrea and Sarah are in the midst of the ICAEW Climate Summit this week.

A wise man once told me that a mistake is an opportunity to impress people with your ability to correct it efficiently, and the ICAEW has certainly done that in these cases. They deserve all credit for doing so.


By |November 24th, 2022|Uncategorized|0 Comments

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