By Alistair Collier | The Business of Golf Magazine

How important is a course’s conditioning, in terms of the playability, within the context of the JC Survey?

I ask, because I was recently in discussion with someone who was concerned with this problem with conditioning, after a number of fungus related issues. The person felt that a discussion feature about the environment, in which their golf course would be a central focus, would not be appropriate for their facility, given the condition that the greens were in, and the fact that they were, and I quote – ‘in such a mess’.

AC: I can understand this sensitivity, however, the primary purposes of the survey are to provide the participating clubs with a toolkit and dashboard, to help them to monitor their levels of environmental compliance, and to keep track on how effective their governance activities are.

In this context, it is “nice” if the greens are holding, yet feel like putting on a firm and predictable surface. However, nice though this aspect might be, this type of playability has very little to do with the purposes of the Survey. The John Collier Survey is not like a customer feedback service on – thankfully!

The Survey provides the platform, for what is in effect an internalised set of interactions, and all of these will take place within each club’s participating departments. In the context of the programme, and the goals that the club has set itself, the Survey’s tools will help the club in monitoring its own environmental and governance progress, based on a generic route map provided by the Survey.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to email or visit the John Collier Golf website at