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The world faces multiple global challenges. From climate change to mass migration, the list is long and varied. To combat these global threats, we will need breakthrough innovations across nearly all sectors and technologies. Venture capital is likely to be a key enabler to the world’s most most creative and daring entrepreneurs to develop the disruptive innovations and new business models that tackle some of the world’s big challenges.
The event Innovation for Sustainability: venture capital as a driver of change brings to Zurich some of the most prominent thinkers and entrepreneurial pioneers dedicated to developing market-based solutions to some of the world’s big problems. The event will focus on the entrepreneurial opportunities taking place in two key areas: urban mobility and food systems.
Disrupting food production
Meat and dairy companies have a big environmental impact. According to the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), the top 20 meat and dairy companies in the world emitted more greenhouse gases in 2017 than all of Germany, the world’s fourth largest economy. At the same time, startups using technology to engineer meat in labs or develop plant-based alternative threaten the entire meat production value chain. Going forward, the complex and costly value chain required to raise and slaughter billions of livestock each year could be the next sector set for a shake-up.
Disrupting urban mobility
The global transportation sector is set for disruption. With over 1.2 billion cars on the road today, making up nearly a quarter of global CO2 emissions, the sector is faced with rising social and environmental costs, demanding a fundamental rethink of urban mobility systems. In a world of exponential change, transportation is already being disrupted by a confluence of forces like electrification, autonomous driving, the Internet of Cars (IoC) and the sharing economy. For instance, a number of startups are working on autonomous electric cars, shared car networks, ride hailing platforms, bike and scooter sharing offerings, and so much more. The transformation has just begun.