Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to present concrete recommendations on how the ISO 14001 standard for environmental management systems can be improved. Design/methodology/approach – The paper presents the key results of a Canadian colloquium on ISO 14001. The theme of the colloquium was “How can ISO 14001 be improved in its next incarnation?” In total, 22 people from a wide variety of sectors participated in the colloquium. The discussions included a combination of plenary and small group discussions and were led by two professional facilitators. The colloquium was a part of a series of four events that have occurred since 2002. The next colloquium will be held in approximately two years. Findings – The improvements suggested by the participants were organized around seven key areas: definitions; purpose; environmental policy; public reporting; monitoring and measurement; management review; and other changes. The changes are presented in detail in the paper. Originality/value – The participants in the colloquium believed that the suggested changes will make significant improvements to ISO 14001. The suggestions are timely, given that the standard is up for review in the near future.
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