“I want the city, but I want the country too.” – Jonathan Richman
In this blog I focus on sustainability and project management, two areas that have become important in my life. I’m interested in their intersection and what it means to be a green project manager, whether you’re working in a specifically green industry or simply applying principles of sustainability at any job. Sustainability is a multifaceted concept that to me includes issues of nature and community, which I also cover in this blog. I find that these areas often overlap; for example, I’ve used my project management skills in community organizing activities, as well as when looking into getting solar panels for a condo complex where I lived in San Francisco. For more on green project management, see my post What is green project management?
Sustainability goes beyond recycling and using renewable energy, and it can be applied to just about any aspect of life. On a personal level, each of us can strive to not only decrease our carbon footprint but even simplify our lives — for example, we can eschew rampant consumerism in favor of purchasing and using only what we feel we really need. A sustainable community would incorporate features of environmental preservation and more — such as providing a public square to encourage neighbors to interact, thereby increasing residents’ sense of well-being as well as their safety. Such a community would be a place where people of all socioeconomic classes can get to know one another and work together to strengthen their community. And a sustainable community would enrich people’s lives and their environment in countless ways.
Living in an urban environment can pose challenges in all these areas, yet it can also provide many opportunities. A multi-unit building is generally more energy-efficient than a single-family home, and a densely populated city can more easily support robust public transportation, as well as providing ample opportunities for people to interact. And even in a city, it’s possible to encounter some nature. The number of community gardens in my neighborhood just keeps increasing, and many new developments incorporate green areas. The photo in the blog header was taken at Mission Creek Park in the Mission Bay area of San Francisco, where I sometimes took walks at lunch when I worked at Adobe. Of the many green spaces that this neighborhood features, this park is the wildest, and it’s an amazing bit of nature right in the city. On my walks, I’ve seen herons and even sea lions, among the ubiquitous sea gulls — all just steps away from the office where I worked.
You’ll find posts on all these subjects in this blog, and I hope they will be of interest. Thanks for reading!
— Rosana Francescato