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Empowering the Future

Coalitions, C-suite collaborations and regenerative solutions

As I stand on the brink of COP28, I am both inspired and challenged by the 27 years that have passed since the inaugural Conference Of Parties. The world has witnessed incremental changes, a shifting vocabulary, and a sea of experts within the #bluezone, yet the fundamental paradigm remains largely unchanged. 

Future Economy Forum COP27 Solutions Events bring together a global coalition of leaders. © Renske van GrinsvenIt's evident that the nucleus of true change doesn't emerge solely from negotiations between the powerful or generic solutions; it springs from the edges of our systems, from actors deeply embedded in their communities. It's a regenerative future that we seek, one where the economy and ecology are seamlessly intertwined, and it's a future we must co-create through collaboration, innovation, and a sustainable mindset.

The Power of Coalitions
In the pursuit of regenerative solutions, coalitions play a pivotal role. These alliances, often formed by organizations, governments, and grassroots movements, transcend individual interests, fostering a collective vision for a sustainable future. COP28 in Abu Dhabi serves as a significant platform for these coalitions to converge, share insights, and amplify their impact. Collaborative efforts, rooted in diverse perspectives and expertise, have the potential to drive systemic change. It's through such coalitions that we can harness the collective power needed to challenge existing paradigms and push for innovative, regenerative solutions.

C-Suite and Board Collaborations
At the heart of organizational change lie the decisions made in the C-suites and boardrooms of corporations and institutions. The responsibility to adopt a sustainable mindset doesn't rest solely on environmental departments but permeates every level of the organization. C-suite executives and board members hold the key to transforming businesses from within. By integrating sustainability into core strategies, these leaders can influence supply chains, production methods, and consumer behavior. Their decisions ripple across industries, setting new standards and reshaping market demands. The collaboration between these influential figures can catalyze a regenerative wave, creating a domino effect of positive change across sectors.

The Sustainable Mindset and Innovation
Central to this transformation is the cultivation of a sustainable mindset within organizations. It's a shift in perspective that transcends profit margins and embraces a broader definition of success, one that includes environmental stewardship and social responsibility. This mindset fuels innovation, encouraging the exploration of eco-friendly technologies, circular economies, and regenerative practices. Innovation becomes a driving force, transforming challenges into opportunities. It's through innovative solutions that we can redefine our approach to agriculture, manufacturing, energy, and transportation, aligning them with the principles of regeneration.

Looking Ahead: COP28 and Beyond
COP27 Solutions Dialogues hosted by the Future Economy Forum. © Renske van GrinsvenAs I prepare to participate in COP28, I am filled with hope and determination. This gathering is not just a conference; it's a nexus of possibilities. It's an opportunity for coalitions to form, for C-suite executives and board members to collaborate, and for a sustainable mindset to converge with innovation. Together, we can amplify the voices from the edges of our systems, where communities are deeply entrenched, and where regeneration is not just a concept but a way of life.

In the words of Sara Roversi from the Future Food Institute, true change begins within ourselves. It's about tapping into the profound source of regeneration within us and exerting leadership from the core of our being. As we navigate COP28 and the challenges that lie beyond, let us remember that the future economy, one that seamlessly reconnects economy and ecology, is within our grasp. Let us be the actors of emergent change, driving the paradigm shift from the edges of the system, and ushering in a regenerative era that future generations will look back upon with gratitude and pride. Together, we can make it happen.

Merijn Dols
Managing Partner, NOW. Former Head of Open Innovation and Circularity at Danone. Advisory board member, Ellen MacArthur Foundation and Future Food Institute. Regenerative Economy Fellow at Natural Capitalism Solutions. Facilitates the paradigmatic shift to a regenerative future that reconnects Economy and Ecology. Circular Economy scholar and lecturer.

Gesellschaft | Pioniere & Visionen, 10.09.2023

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