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CEM-14/MI-8 – A Gigaton Opportunity and the 21st Century Innovation Ecosystem

August 19, 2023
Goa, India
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During CEM-14/MI-8 in Goa, India, the Mission Innovation NCI side event focused on the Gigaton Opportunity, to discuss the shift from traditional sustainability work to an expanded innovation agenda with a focus on bringing the entire solution ecosystem together to enable transformative  change. The approach targets both a bottom-up approach through solution providers and start-ups, and enablers that facilitates new solution providers. The event saw representation from some of the most forward-looking stakeholders globally that covered:

  • Promoting a human needs driven innovation  ecosystem delivering sustainable avoided emissions
  • Building and supporting incubators and  accelerators
  • Enablers and tools for transformative  system solutions

Massamba Thioye, Project Executive,  UNFCCC Global Innovation Hub
Dennis  Pamlin, Executive Director, Mission Innovation NCI / Senior Advisor, RISE
Jay  Hennessy, Director for Mission Innovation's Net-Zero Compatibility  Initiative, RISE
Smita Rakesh, Partner, Social Alpha
Pourya Salehi, Head of Urban Research, Innovation  and Development Team, ICLEI
Joe  Griffiths, Founder, Global Innovation Initiative Group
Thomas  Kösters, Managing Director, DEEP Ecosystems
David Eklund,  CEO, Icebug
Dr Ganesh  Das, Chief – Collaboration & Innovation, TATA Power
Aimée Aguilar  Jaber, Programme Lead – System thinking and transformative change for nature  & resilience, OECD

Smita Rakesh, Partner, Social Alpha, said,

– The way we define  our problems will guide the way will solve them. Therefore moving away from a  sectoral problems statement approach, to actually looking at what are some of  the basic needs […] and where are we going wrong in meeting them right now.

Pourya Salehi, Head of Urban Research, Innovation and Development Team, ICLEI, said  

– We recognize that  progress in addressing the climate emergency is way too slow, and to speed  things up we need to apply three strategic principles of [an] expanded  innovation agenda: putting human needs at the center stage, leveraging  emerging technologies and creating new ecosystems of innovation.

Joe Griffiths, Founder, Global Innovation  Initiative Group, said

– There are thousands of these solutions,  waiting to be discovered, scaled and mobilized. Solutions that will enable 11  billion lives to flourish. Solutions that will ensure the next generation,  and the next, will flourish.

Thomas Kösters, Managing Director, DEEP  Ecosystems, said

– It’s not only about venture capital and the right  entrepreneurs, but it is about creating new markets for sustainable  solutions, creating a new society and a new economic market, where we can see  different solutions than in the past.

David Eklund, CEO, Icebug, said

The purpose for Icebug, and many others in the  outdoor industry, is to allow people to get out in nature and have a healthy,  flourishing life, that is often very resource and energy efficient.

Dr Ganesh Das, Chief – Collaboration &  Innovation, TATA Power, said

– The endeavor is to get the customers, the general  population, to believe that even a small change can make a huge difference  and play a role in getting to the sustainability targets.

Aimée  Aguilar Jaber, Programme Lead, System thinking and transformative change  for nature & resilience, OECD, said

– We want to support policy makers and other  stakeholders in below the surface so that they can see the system  characteristics or structure, and even the ideas and mental models that have  led us to develop these unsustainable system, so that then policies can  actually be focused on transforming these systems, dealing with root causes.