Zak Wood – The Just Transition requires a new Social Compact and an Economic Reset, along with other word salads.


The transition to a low-carbon-energy future will have broad impacts for society. The most vulnerable and most likely to be harmed and affected by the effects of climate change (food insecurity, the need for mass migration, increasing regularity and impact of extreme weather events) are also most likely to be negatively impacted by these changes, through loss of lower skilled employment, inability to deal with mass migratory pressures, and lack of capacity to deal with what will for many be cataclysmic change.

But the transition provides an opportunity for a more Just, more socio-ecologically balanced world. So we talk about a Just Transition – And we should be thinking not of the process of transition, but the just and stable outcomes, post transition.

This Just Future is not a pie in the sky feel good bunny hugging dream – It is an URGENT AND PRESSING NEED if we are going to mitigate the global risks being escalated by rising social pressures described above.

Climate change and devastating ecological impacts are going to happen – We’re too late to stop them.

What we need to do is establish a new social compact, a new socio-economic structure based less on wealth accumulation and inequality, and more on social security and quality of life for all. Anything less maintains our exposure to vast and violent social upheaval.
But these are grand aims, huge movements.

Today’s presentation is about what practical steps mining companies and individuals who work for them can take to make sure they’re moving along the paths of their choice, towards that guiding star.

Transparency, courage, relationship.

Building new social compacts will be an ongoing, often clumsy, process of negotiation towards a more formally inclusive socio-economic model. It will not be easy, and it will not be a direct path planned out be a central group.

What we can do right now is to build trust by being transparent about our activities, and listen to our stakeholders.


DBK Advisory

Zak Wood is a co-founder and Director at DBK Advisory, a specialist firm assisting medium-large organisations to clearly define their whole-value proposition for investors and other stakeholders, and to set strategies that look beyond only financial profit as a measure of success.

Zak’s expertise in systemic risk and complex systems supports work on several broad initiatives seeking to expand the concept of corporate value, both for individual organisations and as industries collaborating for common societal benefit. He works with faith and mining in South Africa, establishing the next vision of the mining industry, unpacking structural challenges and find pro-active solutions to ensure a stable and sustainable future, both for the mining companies and broader society.

It is Zak’s firm belief that an holistic revisioning of value is a part of incentivising better behaviour among all players in the economy, in ways that will lead to a more stable, more humanely prosperous society.