Anielski Management Inc., (est. 1995 in Edmonton) is an Alberta-based economic consultancy and strategic planning firm that specializes in the economics of well-being. We work with individuals, businesses, communities and governments to help them discover and optimize their genuine wealth and well-being.
Our mission is to enable people, businesses and communities throughout the world to flourish and achieve their highest potential state of well-being. We bring a unique perspective to economics, accountability and finance by examining the well-being impacts of all policies and decisions through our model called Genuine Wealth.
What is Genuine Wealth?
The Genuine Wealth model was developed as a practical tool for decision makers to examine the well-being impacts (financial, social, environmental) of policies, programs, budgets and any decisions that will impact a business, communities or the environment. Using the Genuine Wealth integrated five-capital asset model it is possible to demonstrate the Well-being Impacts and Well-being ROI (Return on Investment) of any decisions, policies or programs on the human, social, natural, built and financial assets of any organization. The model builds on conventional tools such as cost-benefit analysis, financial capital efficiency analysis
The Genuine Wealth models integrates the best analytic tools from economics, accounting, finance and forest ecology. The model is useful for any organization interested in improving the well-being conditions in the workplace, improving customer value with a focus on customer well-being and building new economies and neigbhourhoods where well-being is the highest aspiration for development.
A Genuine Wealth approach to accountability empowers decision makers to evaluate value for money in terms of well-being impacts. The model is particularly useful for municipal governments, First Nations, non-profit organization and businesses with a social-environmental responsibility focus to help demonstrate the well-being impacts of strategic plans as well as operating-capital budgets from optimizing the full suite of five-capital assets of any community or organization.
The Genuine Wealth model was first profiled in Mark Anielski’s 2007 award-winning book The Economics of Happiness: Building Genuine Wealth (New Society Publishers, 2007).
Anielski Management Inc. is a unique corporation that operates on the principle that our ‘best-interests’ (our corporate DNA) are defined in terms of our net positive impact on the well-being of society and the environment. We operate on the basis of optimizing a well-being-bottom line for our team and affiliates as well as our clients. We believe that healthy financial returns are key to a resilient enterprise but this goal must be harmonized and balanced with positive well-being impacts on people’s lives, communities, and the environment. Anielski Management Inc. exists to help contribute to the net well-being of the communities and organizations we advise by ensuring the highest and best use of our community assets.
Our economic consulting and advisory services to businesses, municipal, provincial and federal governments, First Nations, and not-for-profit clients include:
- Wealth & Well-being Assessments — a values-based, integrated total wealth accounting and performance management system is a practical tool for assessing the well-being of communities, businesses and non-profit organizations. The Genuine Wealth model is used to evaluate the five capital assets and their integrated, that is human, social, natural, built and financial/economic capital assets. Clients have included the City of Edmonton, City of Santa Monica, City of Leduc, Tahiti (French Polynesia) the Chinese Government, Alberta Environment, the Canadian Centre fore Substance Abuse, Nunavut Tunngavik Inc. (Iqaluit), and the Ktunaxa- Kinbasket Tribal Council.
- Well-being Return on Investment (Well-being ROI) Assessment of Programs and Services– As an economist and accountant trained in conventional economic cost-benefit analysis, SROI (social-return-on-investment) analysis, financial capital efficiency and other financial performance metrics, I have developed a unique capacity for assessing what I call the Well-being Return on Investment and Return on Assets of programs and services for any kind of organization, whether government, non-profit or First Nations. Using the integrated five-capitals Genuine Wealth I help organizations examine a full suite of well-being impacts (economic/financial, social/community, and environmental) of their programs and services along with a full cost-benefit accounting of these impacts, measured in both monetary and qualitative terms. This provides you and your organization with the capacity to ‘make the business case’ for the real value of your programs and services as they impact society and the environment, while also providing healthy financial returns. The ability to demonstrate a Well-being ROI (return on investment) to your stakeholders and funders will provide your organization a strategic advantage over others. Clients have included Ducks Unlimited Canada, the B.C. Construction Association, the Alberta Government (Seniors and Housing, Alberta Environment), the City of Edmonton, Wichitowin (First Nations umbrella organization in Edmonton), Nakota Sioux First Nation, the government of French Polynesia (Tahiti), the Government of China, the Government of the Netherlands (Department of Finance, Vancity and Canadian Ethical Funds of Canada.
- Well-being Workplace Assessments and Well-being Fitness: According to Gallup, only 13% of Canadian workers feel ‘engaged’ in their work. Evidence shows that when we do not feel engaged in our work or that our work does bring us meaning, then we experience more sick days and tend to want to move from one job to the next. The cost to businesses of low employee engagement includes the high cost of staff turnover, the cost of mental and physical health in terms of sick days, poorer customer relationships and ultimate poorer financial performance. Our unique model for Workplace Well-being Assessment helps any organization from small to large business, non-profit organization, First Nations, or government departments to assess the state of well-being of the organization akin to an annual ‘well-being check-up.’ The well-being check-up will help point to opportunities for improving the conditions of well-being and ‘well-being fitness’ or resiliency in your workplace that will ultimate result in healthier financial performance, better customer value and relationships and ultimately happier and engaged staff.
- Genuine Progress Indicators (GPI) for Communities. Robert Kennedy in 1968 said that the Gross National Product, the measure of economic progress used by all nations, fails to ‘measure the things that make life worthwhile.’ Over the past 20 years I have developed a unique analytic model called GPI or Genuine Progress Indicators to begin to account for the things that make life worthwhile in the context of the GDP (gross domestic product). The GPI was developed by economists to help decision makers in government to assess the economic, environmental and social progress of communities. The City of Edmonton adopted the GPI system and 50 Genuine Progress Indicators for Edmonton as a basis of assessing the societal impacts the strategic plan, The Way Ahead. The GPI is useful for looking at long-term trends in economic, social and environmental well-being in the context of changes in key economic indicators such as GDP, energy prices, and unemployment. I have been applying the GPI model across Canada, the US and China from communities as small as 1000 people to cities 30 million people. The GPI model was originally developed by my economic mentors Herman Daly, John Cobb Jr. and Clifford Cobb in 1989 as a new measure of sustainable economic welfare that provides decision makers with a more complete accounting of progress beyond the current measure of economic progress, the GDP (gross domestic product). Using a GPI-approach to assessing the progress of society, allows policy makers to assess the full economic costs and benefits of local governments and polices. It provides decision makers with a proper accounting of things like unvalued volunteer time, the value unpaid work (childcare, eldercare, stay-at-home parenting) as well as the value of ecosystem services (carbon storage by forests). It also involves a full accounting of social and environmental costs, such as the cost of inequality, poverty, carbon emissions, and environmental pollution, that currently get treated as positive contributions to economic output or GDP. A GPI accounting approach to budgeting (capital and operating) and forecasting empowers municipal, state/provincial and national governments to understand and demonstrate to citizens and stakeholders value (to well-being) from taxes and program/operating expenditures.
- First Nations Community Wealth and Well-being Planning and Development: I have been working closely with First Nations across Canada in providing strategic economic counsel to help them achieve economic and cultural self-determination by taking a well-being-economy approach to planning and governance. First Nation, Metis and Inuit communities understand the value of family, traditions, culture, and Mother Nature. In order to secure a resilient economic future and be business and investment ready, communities need to understand the potential economic well-being benefits of their community assets. These assets include human (people), social (relationships, trust), cultural (traditions), built (infrastructure), natural (land, resources, water, traditional use) and economic assets. I believe that good decision-making requires an assessment of the potential of a community’s assets within a planning framework that encompasses technical, business, legal, political, social and spiritual strategies for improved well-being.My team at Anielski Management Inc., include First Nation consulting affiliates Carol Anne Hilton and Ainjil Hunt, work with First Nation, Metis and Inuit communities to help build the capacity to achieve economic self-sufficiency and a flourishing culture. We know that Indigenous communities are wealthy in terms of spiritual laws, culture, traditions, people, land, and resources within your traditional territories. We focus our energies on strengthening the capacity of individuals, communities, and organizations to improve their overall well-being. Our work begins with a Community Wealth and Well-being Asset Assessment to account for the conditions and potential of the Nation’s human capital, cultural/social/traditional use assets, natural assets (land, water, ecosystem services) and built or infrastructure assets. The assessment includes an assessment of diversity of values, skills, competencies and aspirations of all members of the community. This leads to the development of a Community Well-being Plan and a well-being-based planning and governance culture.
- Natural Capital Accounting — Mark Anielski is recognized internationally for his work in natural capital accounting and valuation of ecosystem services. He has been pioneering natural capital accounting since the early 1990s with natural capital accounts established for Alberta (forests, carbon, oil and gas, agriculture) in 1991. Natural capital accounting and valuation protocols have been used to assess the value of wetlands in Canada for Ducks Unlimited Canada, the ecological and economic value of Canada’s vast Boreal ecosystem as well as the total economic-ecological value of the Mackenzie, North Saskatchewan and Battle River watersheds and estimates of the impacts on ecological services of the proposed Gateway (Enbridge) pipeline. Natural capital accounts provide a comprehensive account or balance sheet for nature’s assets: forests, carbon, petroleum resources, minerals, agricultural lands, and ecosystem services. This provides decision makers with an important tool for demonstrating the real societal value of natural capital assets. I am working with various clients (governments, conservation organizations, First Nations, and resource companies to show them how to incorporate natural capital assets into government ‘balance sheets’ and public accounts as well as financial statements and management accounting systems for various organizations and businesses who have an interest in the proper valuation of natural assets and ecological liabilities or risk. My clients include First Nations, Ducks Unlimited Canada, Nature Conservancy of Canada, the Government of China, the World Bank, the Canadian Boreal Initiative, the Pembina Institute, Statistics Canada, the National Round Table on the Environment and the Economy, Environment Canada, Alberta Environment, the Philippine National Oil Company and Peru’s Department of Energy.
- Ecological Footprint Analysis (EFA)— We are experts in Ecological Footprint Analysis, a tool for measuring the sustainability of individuals and households in our communities. The EFA analysis provides decision makers with one of the most meaningful metrics of sustainable living by converting household expenditures on energy, food, transportation, shelter, and goods and services to the area of land required to sustain these household needs and lifestyle choices. The EFA is being used by several municipal and state/provincial governments as a core measure of environmental sustainability as well as to measure the carbon footprint of cities and neighbourhoods. The EFA was recently successfully applied at the neighbourhood level in the City of Saskatoon providing a meaningful map of the most sustainable neighbourhoods. Clients have included the Cities of Saskatoon, Edmonton, Leduc, Calgary, the towns of Olds and Oakville (Ont.), the province of Alberta and for 20 largest Canadian municipalities for the Federation of Canadian Municipalities.
- Strategic-business planning and Well-being-Results-based Budgeting with a well-being focus– I have been facilitating strategic-business planning processes since the early 1990s when I led Alberta Environment’s strategic-business planning process and then was part of the Alberta Treasury performance measurement team that developed the Alberta Government’s 3-year strategic-business plan and performance outcome report (Measuring Up). In 1999, I led the development of the University of Alberta’s first 3-year strategic business plan. I have also gained considerable expertise in developing performance measurement systems for various government government departments, programs and services. My experience in leading strategic-business planning processes showed me that there was an opportunity to go a step beyond goals-based and performance-based budgeting and performance measurement to a well-being-based planning and budgeting process. In a well-being-based accountability system the fundamental question asked of any budgets or plans is ‘what is the expected positive, negative or neutral impact on societal and environmental well-being?’ My clients have included the Government of Alberta, Government of Canada (Industry Canada/Western Economic Diversification), the University of Alberta, the Wichitowin Circle of Shared Responsibility (representing the well-being interests of Edmonton’s 55,000 Indigenous peoples), the Sustainable Forest Management Network, the City of Edmonton, and the Yukon Department of Economic Development.
- Corporate Sustainability and Triple-bottom-line Reporting– Mark Anielski, as a contributor to the development of the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) guidelines for corporate sustainability reporting, has provided strategic council to businesses who are leaders in corporate social responsibility, triple-bottom-line (sustainability) reporting, and committed to building vibrant local, living, and sustainable economies . We have provided strategic counsel to companies like Suncor Energy, EPCOR, and VanCity, organizations such as the Columbia Basin Trust, as well as local small to medium sized enterprise on how to develop fully integrated financial, social, and environmental sustainability performance measurement and reporting systems using the GW, integrated five-capitals model. Anielski believes that the next generation of corporate sustainability and social reports will be based on the values-based GW model.