The Global View

Can business and sustainability mix? Summit aims for answers

How can businesses and sustainability efforts best work together to build a better future? That question will lie at the heart of a nine-day summit to be hosted by the Prince of Wales’ Start initiative this fall.

Being organised in partnership with IBM, the “Smarter Business for a Sustainable Future” summit is scheduled for 8 – 16 September at Lancaster House in London. Some 120 leaders from business and the public sector are expected to be on hand to hear daily discussions on different issues of sustainability, with one topic to receive special focus each day.

“With the help of some of Britain’s most respected companies and charities we hope to demonstrate how we can all make a start — and have fun doing so,” said Sir Tom Shebbeare, who leads the Start initiative for the Prince of Wales.

Among the summit’s planned themes:

  • The future of cities;
  • Energy;
  • Transport;
  • Skills;
  • Future business leaders;
  • Smarter supply chains;
  • Financing sustainability; and
  • The information revolution

By the end of the nine days, participants are expected to gather together, review and refine the conversations that have taken place and “identify new ways to collaborate to turn these outputs into recommendations for British business.”

At the same time business leaders are meeting to discuss sustainability from their perspective, citizens are being invited to explore other events and programmes taking place across the UK. They will be able to learn more about such initiatives during Start’s 12-day “Garden Party to Make a Difference,” to held from 8 – 19 September in the gardens of Clarence House, Lancaster House and Marlborough House.

Launched earlier this year, the Prince of Wales’ Start initiative aims to “help people across the UK take clear, positive and practical steps towards a better future.”