Durham, NC; New York, NY; Washington DC; Minneapolis, MN; San Jose, CA; Chicago, IL; Seattle, WA; Boston, MA; and Fayetteville, AR. Those were the locations for the nine-city Solutions Lab series in 2010.
From these one-day, participatory events, we got to hear from more than 700 business-sustainability “thinkers” and “doers” around the country. Participants included business people from the smallest start-ups to the largest corporations; government and nonprofit leaders who want to partner with business; and a healthy mix of researchers, investors and consultants.
So what was on their mind? Everything from engaging employees to transforming corporate culture. From influencing today’s consumer to reaching the next generation through k-12 education. From increasing efficiency to exploring the next frontier of sustainability.
We’ve captured their top line discussion topics and feedback in a new learning summary. Stay tuned for a more detailed synopsis being inked by our partner, AltaTerra. You can also get a feeling for the events from the video created by participant Mark Leisher of Green Roads TV and read blog posts written about several of the labs.
Launching Solutions Labs 2011
All this input is helping EDF and our partners – which include Ashoka, Rocky Mountain Institute, Pew Center for Climate Change, Dig In, and the Society for Organizational Learning – plot new directions for the Solutions Labs and its umbrella organization, now called Green Innovators in Business Network (aka GIBN).
GIBN, a nascent national collective of individuals and organizations, aims to provide opportunities for “business changemakers” to share lessons, challenges, and solutions for moving us toward a more sustainable economy. And we are encouraging anyone interested in GIBN and the Labs to participate in some upcoming planning calls:
- This Tuesday, 1/25 at 2 PM ET/11 AM PT.
- Tuesday, 2/8 at 2 PM ET/11 AM PT
To join. dial into the following conference line:
760-569-9000, code: 160031#
Or you can email your thoughts to firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can read more about our objectives for GIBN and the Solutions Lab in the 2010 Solutions Lab Summary. Highlights include:
- Deepening the network: We aim to create more connections among business leaders and practitioners throughout the country during the 2011 Solutions Lab series and by forging links with existing regional and national networks.
- Refining the event format: We will continue to refine the Solutions Lab format (now a hybrid of an unconference and a highly interactive workshop) and experiment with other formats that allow for the greatest amount of learning and connection among participants.
- Supporting locally-initiated events: In 2011, GIBN will encourage local groups to plan their own events (with help from the GIBN national team) and explore opportunities to team up with existing conference and events.