s governments worldwide preparelegislation to create a "cap and trade"market to limit greenhouse gas emissions,CLIMATE CHANGE The New Economy(CCTNE) speaks with Nigel King, Vice President, OracleApplications Strategy, about solutions that integratecorporate strategy with sustainability.CCTNE:When did you first become interested in thesustainability debate?Nigel King:It has been in the background for as long as Ican remember, but I think the "epiphany" for me wasthreefold. First, I came to understand that we are facingan urgent global problem. The concentration of carbondioxide (CO2) in the atmosphere is approaching criticallevels, with the isotherm moving northward at the rate of35 miles per decade. NASA's climatology unit is tellingus we have to cap emissions by 2015 and get themmoving in the other direction. Then, I began to see howan externality for businesses started to creep back intothe enterprise. The externality is the cost of respondingto the climatic change. While the costs of extraction,refining, and transportation are built into the costs offuel, the costs of consuming the carbon capacity of theatmosphere are not. But this externality is beginning tobe reflected in "cap and trade" systems. But at last, Isaw this was a problem that, at a personal andprofessional level, I can do something about.CCTNE: Why is Oracle as a company getting interested inthis field?Nigel King:Our customers are beginning to weaveenvironmental policy into their overall corporatestrategy. Oracle's products and services are there toassist customers in the monitoring and execution of thatstrategy. Our products will evolve, but there are manycapabilities that can already support customers in theseefforts. For example, now that "cap and trade" isbecoming a reality in the United States, customers arethinking about how carbon should be reflected in theirresource planning system - and an application such asOracle Advanced Planning and Scheduling can assistwith that. If a resource is included on a bill of resources,the capacity constraints and differential costs betweenbeing inside or over your carbon cap can help youoptimise your production. I have been amazed to findthat our customers are already including carbonstatistics in their budgeting and reporting processes.CCTNE:But this reaches beyond carbon emissions,right? Are there other areas customers should address aspart of corporate sustainability strategy?Nigel King:Even the carbon emissions problem is multi-faceted. Energy security shook the world in 2007 andshould have brought home the real risk and businesscontinuity issue for the enterprise. But now there arealso market access issues in customers in your supplychain needing to know the carbon footprint of yourproducts. But yes, the debate is much wider thancarbon emissions and Oracle can bring more diverseRESPONDING TO THECHANGINGNEEDS OFBUSINESSESINFORMATION & COMMUNICATION 072TECHNOLOGYNIGEL KING, VICE PRESIDENT, ORACLE APPLICATIONS STRATEGY A
INFORMATION & COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGY073Right: Vice President ofOracle's ApplicationsStrategy, Nigel Kingcapabilities to the table. Customers can extend the useof our governance risks and compliance offeringsbeyond ISO 14000 [Note: ISO 14000 is a standard forreducing the environmental footprint of a business anddecreasing the pollution and waste a businessproduces] to fuller environmental audits encompassingthings like ethical purchasing verification. Or use ourproduct lifecycle management offerings not only toensure design for manufacturability, but also design fordisassembly and recovery of components in the post-consumer phases of the product. Customers may alsoneed to re-examine distribution and logistics systemsthat have to account for a much larger reverse logisticsflow as landfill is rapidly becoming a thing of the past.All these abilities are there today and can helpcustomers better meet the demands of this businessclimate change.CCTNE:What are the biggest changes that you expect inbusiness systems as a result of the need for moresustainable business practices?Nigel King:We will need to present business problems ina different way. We will need to measure ourselves indifferent ways. The economic model should put a valueon scarce resources, but the resources that are becomingscarce do not seem to be accounted for in the way theeconomy currently works. We will need to measurecompanies and products not just in price, but in somemeasure of environmental scorecard. This may seemoutlandish, but I picked up a humble bag of potato chipsthat proudly told me its carbon content right on thepacket. Consumers are already making purchasingdecisions on information other than price. This is reallyhappening at a ground level today. Business systemssuch as Oracle's Sensor Data Management gather andaggregate the appropriate measures to make thispossible - energy, greenhouse gases, heavy metals,landfill space, water consumption, net new material -and present this information to management, consumersand investors. It may take a while for the measures tostabilise, so that such comparisons can be made, but itis a movement that can be sensed now and is growing. CCTNE: How are public policy and private enterprise eachdriving these changes?Nigel King:Public policy is bringing the costs ofsustainability into the enterprise. The enterprise is goodat making rational economic decisions, but the tools ofpublic policy have to be there to make the costs evident.And there are decisions that need to be made at the levelof the state that are the constraints within which theenterprise will function. This frames the problem for usas engineers - finding solutions to difficult problems iswhat we are good at. At Oracle, solving businessproblems is what we have always been about, and this iswhere we think we can help our customers, and throughthat help contribute to a wider solution. nABOUT NIGEL KINGNigel King is Vice President for Functional Architecturefor Fusion Applications at Oracle. As such heleads aband of architects whose job it is to steward the designsand underpinnings for those things that span productfamilies. By first profession Mr King is a CharteredManagement Accountant. He is also a Certified InternalAuditor (CIA), Certified Information Systems Auditor(CISA), Certified Information Security Manager (CISM),Certified Information Security Professional (CISSP) andCertified Manufacturing Engineer (CmfgE). His Patentsinclude: "Methods and systems for portfolio planning","Audit management workbench", "Internal auditoperations for Sarbanes Oxley compliance" and "Auditplanning". Mr King is also Chairman of the OpenApplications Group. The Open Applications Group is a501(c)(6) not-for-profit standards developmentorganisation (SDO) focused on building process-basedbusiness standards for eCommerce, Cloud Computing,Service Oriented Architecture (SOA), Web Services,and Enterprise Integration.