We’ll take some time in today’s post to recap Sense & Sustainability’s role in last month’s Key Platform conference in Seoul.
On the second day of the conference, S&S facilitated an interactive “Plug In & Talk” session, with members of our team leading three panels throughout the day. What S&S was trying to accomplish that day was to connect the dots — between individual company presentations and the overarching themes of the conference — and between business and sustainability.
The day’s program was kicked off by Lucas Merrill-Brown, Senior Data Scientist at RedOwl Analytics, who chaired a session on “Applications of Big Data to Accelerate Innovation.” He introduced the session’s panelists, who would discuss ways to extract “dollars from data,” from retail customers to energy data.
On this panel was Adam Welsh, another member of the S&S team and Senior Director at Opower, a company that uses personalized information about energy consumption to encourage their customers to conserve power and money. By raising customer awareness, for example by making them aware of their neighbors’ energy consumption, the Opower approach would have the potential to save 700 GWh in energy in Korea each year, and 85 billion Korean won in annual bill savings for customers.
Patrick Behrer, Managing Editor of S&S, chaired the next session of the day, on “Ecosystem Thinking as a Creative Economy Enabler.” Behrer gave the opening talk of the session, on how businesses can profit from monetizing ecosystem services, presenting Coca-Cola and Patagonia Sur as global examples of this practice. Ishan Nath and Jennifer Wilson from the S&S team acted as discussants on this panel, asking the two presenters about the extent to which they had utilized ecosystem monetization in their companies.
In the afternoon, Abdulrahman El-Sayed, future faculty member at Columbia University and past guest on the S&S podcast, chaired a panel on “Hyperconnectivity and Social Value Creation.” Dr. El-Sayed started the panel off with a presentation on public health, highlighting the threat posed by smoking and suicide in South Korea. He went on to highlight how business can partner with government to solve some of the country’s challenges in this field. S&S team members Garikai Nyaruwata and David Imbert acted as discussants on the panel.
The wrap-up, which we covered last week, was delivered by Jisung Park, Co-Founder of S&S, who ended the second day of the conference by asking participants to reconsider the relationship between business and sustainability in light of the presentations of the past two days. Jisung also took some time to appear on a Money Today broadcast (video below, skip to 4:03, 13:07 & 20:00 to hear Jisung) to discuss what Sense & Sustainability is and how he sees the sustainability as a driver of innovation in business.