Category Archives: Environment

Almost Amazing – New Video from Google for Entrepreneurs

A quick post to share a great video for a world where entrepreneurship is on its way to becoming as prevalent and appealing as the great employed masses.

I have often waxed lyrical about the strengths of entrepreneurialism in smaller business or corporations alike, but business for the sake of business isn’t what we should be aiming for.

Yes, jobs and wealth generation are the essential to stable functioning economies but with the environmental and social storms on the horizon, we need to be demanding more from any new businesses not already ingrained in an outdated carbon intensive, fuck you world I want a yacht mentality.

Entrepreneurship is wonderful but we, and I mean Google in particular, as they should know better (they know everything don’t they?) should be taking the leadership role by seeding all new businesses with the additional knowledge of a world just over the start up launch day party horizon.

Profit is not a bad word, but it does have a bad reputation.

I’ll just leave a couple of such seeds here…

BCorps – Normal business / better model

Breakthrough Business Models – the shape of future business (pdf)

 

 

 

 

 

A Cunning Plan That Might Just Work

Did you know whilst the world goes to hell in a handbasket à la Trump, Brexit, ISIS, all reality tv, plastic microbeads et al, there is actually a plan to counteract much of humanity’s blatant disregard for our planet and respect for each other?

Ok, that may actually be a first world vision of the underworld, and the real global challenges sit lower down Maslow’s hierarchy, but that is probably too close to the blissfully ignorant view of those outside the Sustainable Development Goals bubble.

As part of my own humble action for #GlobalGoals week I’m going to post every damn day, which for me will be a near miracle when I pull it off, and some of it may even make sense, possibly even inspire an action or several.

So to kick the week off, and the next 14 years, here’s the big plan. It is not mine, but I do like it…

 

Amongst a few ideas I have I will also share an amazing trip last week to New York to jump into the world of #Impact2030 where the private sector is pushing its own efforts through human impact investment (or volunteering if you prefer). I may even cover entrepreneurship, technology, sport and BCorps, but who knows? I don’t. You’ll just have to stay tuned to enjoy the fun!

But, please, do one thing extra this week. Make an hour to read, share or just do something, anything. If you let me know what you did I may even send you a present.

#GlobalGoals

#2030Now

#Impact2030

 

Is Liam Really #TechForGood, or #MarketingForApple?

29 arms of recycling innovation robot beautifully presented (of course) and they call it Liam? Only in the world of Apple.

Whilst hastily allowing myself to lose all focus on the writing I should have been doing today I jumped at the chance to join @TomRaftery as guest co-host for his #TechForGood Google Hangout tomorrow. As I explored previous shows to get a feel for my responsibilities I stumbled back across the ‘Liam’ element of Apple’s recent keynote.

The last few weeks have been something of a blur with many new discussions and projects appearing like the Rebel Alliance out of hyperdrive, but all with an eerily connected technology flavour. The Apple announcement was momentarily noted for their strong focus on responsibility at their key communications event of their calendar, before being usurped by the usual social media avalanche.

I’ve been a long standing frustrated critic of Apple, more from a wasted potential perspective than their actual social or environmental accomplishments, which have been markedly improving over recent years. Tim Cook has many achievements to take credit for, as it can’t have been an easy task to push sustainability up the priority list of the culture moulded by Steve Jobs.

Whilst on the day Lisa Jackson (SVP of Environment, Policy and Social Initiatives) was conspicuously front and centre, and the privacy debate raging with the FBI obviously adding its influence, Liam felt like the physical hook of attention for a more confident responsibility ethos away from the usual line-up of product launches.

Yes, I know there are only so many ways you can innovate with a phone, and this could be Apple running out of innovative product steam, but the eternal optimist in me is seeing Apple want to be seen as more than just a purveyor of beautiful ‘stuff’. That beauty could be creeping into their approach to their wider responsibilities.

Liam is an allegedly, as I’ve not seen many at all, 29 arm robot that can in a mere 11 seconds recycle a notoriously difficult product into component parts like never seen before. I’ve dreamed of Apple applying its design mastery for a stronger purpose than just music and communications. Was this it?

Maybe. Maybe not. After all there is only one Liam, I believe, and at full speed, could disassemble 1.2 million iPhones per year. Actually, only potentially 1.2 million iPhone 6s units until they teach it about the rest of their product back catalogue. That total would be in the billions. Last year alone Apple sold 230 million phones.

Innovative? Absolutely. Open source and shareable by the whole industry to reduce e-waste? Probably not going to happen (but hoping). Expensive? Absolutely and certainly prohibitively so. Chances of Apple opening recycling depots full of Liams? Slim. Marketing gimmick or potential for true impact? Actions speak louder than YouTube videos, so we shall see.

With over 1 billion smartphone products alone sold every year. A few weeks after the launch Liam now feels more like a lonely Disney Wall-E type character, desperate for a real purpose, a few friends and more trees, but I continue to hope.

Join me and Tom tomorrow at 4.00pm UK to explore this week’s #TechForGood news.

 

 

Thames Deckway Indiegogo Campaign Goes Live

thames_deckway_infographic_2015_10_29-07_1024As promised in the previous post, here is the link to the now live Indiegogo campaign for the next phase of the Thames Deckway concept.

It is already stirring the urban transport debate whilst connecting diverse stakeholder communities. It is big, bold, sustainability focused and could create significant value for London or further afield.

Many answers still lie ahead for the project but visionary leaders like Thames Deckway’s Anna Hill should be given every opportunity to push for safer, cleaner more sustainable transport infrastructure.

Head over, read the latest FAQ’s, pick your favourite support ‘Perk’ and share with friends and colleagues. I’ll be going for the cycling cap I think. I’m just waiting for the temperatures to dip on those long brisk rides.

#walkonwater

 

 

 

 

Float Across London By Bike

Thames Deckway cycle pedestrian pathway London sustainability

What would you pay to ride across London in 30 minutes traffic free?

Our small but significant island here in the UK is getting more crowded every day. Strangely though only 1 – 2% of all journeys are made by bike. I could understand maybe if that statistic was for the US where everything is designed around the car gods, and therefore miles apart, but here? Really? That figure hits 25% in other not-so-different parts of the world such as the Netherlands.

What do major metropolitan areas such as London, New York, Berlin, Paris, Moscow, Shanghai, Tokyo, Washington, Karachi, Rome, Sidney and Liverpool (well, I am biased) to name but a few, all have in common? Rivers. Many mostly empty or underused, save a few tourist laden barges.

Apart from often being a direct corridor through the automotive traffic chaos, can any route be more serene?

The Thames Deckway is one such potential solution to present itself whether that be London or elsewhere. As cycling continues to grow in parallel to environmental considerations how long will it be before significant infrastructure investments flow into such opportunities?

A floating, sustainable cycle and pedestrian route could be a reality in a very near future should political will and public support prevail. Maybe London will get there first.

I’m helping the folks at Thames Deckway go up through the gears as they approach a crowdfunding campaign rapidly approaching. I hope you’ll take the time to explore the concept, follow the story and show your support if you believe in the need for radically new solutions to transport infrastructure.

I’ll update this page with the link to the crowdfunding campaign for the launch when available, but follow the story so far and into the future via @Thames_Deckway on Twitter or ThamesDeckway on Facebook

Act 1, Scene 1: Incremental Is Not Enough

StretchAgendaAnything that looks like an erupting spiral galaxy in a pressure cooker looks good to me.

As I’m exploring pastures and projects new I’m determined to better share the projects, ideas, people and successes that inspire and challenge me, so here’s a perfect start…

If to the cosmic cooking imagery you then add a thoughtfully written dramatisation to creatively engage a wider audience (you know the mainstream one we excitedly think we already do – but don’t) to promote a new take on capitalism, you’ve got my attention, and quite probably a few others who need to step up for the first time too.

Behind the image is the ethos of the Breakthrough Capitalism model of John Elkington and colleagues at Volans. This week saw the launch of the #StretchAgenda, the play to change the board room world, and maybe it will.

Incremental isn’t enough, we have to take what progress we can eke each day but somebody needs to push at the top with the big ideas. Check out the definitions quoted to whet your appetites…

Capitalism is … the future, but needs a reboot. Whether privately or state owned, capitalism must be constrained by political, regulatory and institutional factors to create the consistent social value required to ensure its long term license to operate and innovate. The focus is expanding to embrace financial, physical, human, intellectual, natural and social forms of capital.

Breakthrough Capitalism is … an emerging pathway to a world that works well for all people and all species. Our focus is on new forms of capitalism with potential to drive both financial and non-financial value, value that is increasingly Clean, Conscious, Inclusive, Responsible, Regenerative and Sustainable.

Will it change the game?

Click here to go straight to the #StretchAgenda play.

breakthrough-challengeI’d also heartily recommended checking out John’s book with Jochen Zeitz, The Breakthrough Challenge (2014)

Could Weakness Become Your Opportunity?

A lesson in the art of vulnerability, or how to click with your ‘date’ using Corporate Social Responsibility.

 

One of those socially invisible bleached out pachyderms insists that companies should constantly defend a cloak of presented perfectionism. As the corporate communications functions of businesses tentatively emerge, like the first struggling amphibians out of the water from the control and broadcast mentality, we are seeing fascinating case studies and pockets of enlightenment.

Does anybody believe businesses are perfect? Does anybody think they even come close, ever? The countless surveys and reports on reputation and brand perception suggest Continue reading