IKC3 launch new Sustainability for Small & Medium Enterprises

SME - Small to Medium Enterprise

Ireland’s Knowledge Centre for Carbon and Climate (www.IKC3.ie) is delivering a step change in the development and deployment of education, innovation, collaborative, and design thinking to tackle some of the most pressing challenges we face today in the context of climate disruption.

The IKC3 Project is led by Munster Technological University and delivered in collaboration with Trinity College and University College Dublin to create a national platform for sustainability skills and education. This platform will provide graduates and industry professionals with curated learning pathways, stackable micro-courses, summer schools and micro credentials that create and maintain the flow of talent and relevant skills required by industry, enterprise and civic society through close collaboration with industry on skills assessment, program development and delivery.

The IKC3 ‘Sustainability for Small to Medium Enterprise’ aims to support and empower SMEs (Small to Medium Enterprise) in a practical, actionable way to take control of their sustainability planning and monitoring needs.

Comprised of six interactive sessions over 12 weeks, the programme aims to help SMEs in the creation of their sustainability journey roadmap tailored to the specific needs of each organisation. This progamme aims to guide participating SMEs and their staff to create incremental but meaningful changes into their business.

Key to this, SMEs will assess their current operations, set clear actionable objectives and engage with their staff and stakeholders to identify areas for improvement, developing strategies, monitoring progress, and thereby laying the foundation for an effective and practical sustainability journey roadmap.

Globally and nationally, SMEs play a vital role in driving economic growth and innovation. Implementing a sustainability plan can help these small to medium enterprises to become more resilient, uncover cost efficiencies, preempt upcoming rules and regulations, improve brand reputation, and gain a competitive edge.

‘Business sustainability isn’t a passing trend; it’s no longer a matter of ‘if’, but ‘when’ – It’s here to stay.’

Consumers care about environmental and social issues and expect businesses to do so as well. In fact, nowadays, many will only purchase from companies that meet these expectations. Quite simply, having a sustainability plan isn’t just the right thing to do, it will also help create a competitive advantage for your business. So, it’s crucial to understand what sustainability means to your business and make it central to your everyday activities and the decisions you make.

Dr. Helena McMahon DIrector of the IKC3 Project says “We are very excited about delivering this much needed training for SMEs in Ireland who account for 99% of active enterprises and 70% of employment. The people who create and lead SMEs all over Ireland are incredibly diverse – from family owned businesses, rural-owner managers, traditional, high growth and technology start-ups and the IKC3 Project is focused on supporting these key stakeholders in the Irish economy to plan, develop and future proof their businesses in the transition towards a net zero society.

The IKC3 project is designed to collaborate closely with industry on the skills assessment and program roll out. Pat Kane’s experience as a Chief Sustainability Officer brings that real life industry perspective and learnings into the sessions.

We welcome applicants from across all sectors and organisations to take part in the IKC3 Sustainability for Small to Medium Enterprise training programme to generate a practical roadmap that they can begin implementing immediately and to support their communication strategy with regards to staff, suppliers and customers”. 

Patricia Kane says “I am absolutely delighted to be collaborating with IKC3 on this information-packed, practical training dedicated to assisting SMEs in their pursuit of sustainability. Our shared vision of fostering environmentally and socially responsible business practices is reflected in the programme content and collaborative delivery approach. We aim to empower small and medium-sized enterprises to not only thrive in their markets but to also contribute to a more sustainable future. This embodies the essence of progress, reminding us that when knowledge and innovation unite, meaningful change becomes not only possible but inevitable.”

Catriona Power, Manager of the Circular Bioeconomy Cluster South-West says ‘Through our work and engagement with  businesses across Ireland we see they are looking to identify practical sustainability actions and transform them into tangible benefits for their strategy, operations and market access.  I’m delighted to see this unique programme come to fruition and most importantly, tailored for SMEs”

Start Date: February Week Commencing 5th February 2024
Delivery: via Zoom, fortnightly
Session Times: 7pm – 9:30pm
Programme Fee: €300
Application Deadline: January 23rd 2024


Programme Themes:

  • Sustainable Development Goals –  Alignment for SMEs
  • Resource Management & Policy – Influencing and Competing Factors for SMEs
  • Inspiration from real world SMEs in climate transition action, reporting and monitoring
  • Sustainability Roadmap – Design and strategic pillars for successful implementation
  • Green Team – Building the team and developing internal skills
  • Communicating Green Credentials – Internal, external stakeholders, suppliers & customers