Cleantech Group and Facebook challenge you to use social to accelerate cleantech
by Sheeraz Haji
Cleantech products and services are inherently social. When my neighbors install solar panels on their roofs or buy an EV, they want to tell all their friends about it. Demonstrating how one is contributing to the broader public good by reducing their impact on the environment has become somewhat of a status symbol (at least in Berkeley!). However, the cleantech industry has not done a great job of using the web in creative ways to amplify the social aspects of cleantech products and services.
With that in mind, Cleantech Group and Facebook are excited to announce "Cleantech Goes Social," a contest that aims to harness the power of Facebook's billion-person network to accelerate cleantech adoption and engage the public on sustainability issues. We are challenging cleantech companies and others to find new ways to use Facebook to accelerate cleantech, whether it's through an app on the Facebook platform or a new method of integrating Facebook into products and services. We are asking contestants to tell us their story about how they will use Facebook to address energy and resources challenges, accelerate cleantech adoption, and engage the public in dialogue about sustainability issues.
The winner of the contest will receive $25,000 of prize money, as well as personalized guidance from my Cleantech Group colleagues and members of the Facebook team on how to deliver on their concept. Cleantech Group, Facebook, and members of the Global Cleanweb Initiative will judge the entries. The three finalists will be invited to Cleantech Forum San Francisco 2013 (March 18-20), where they will pitch their concepts to a panel of investors in front of an audience. To make this experience as interactive as possible, we will ask participants of Cleantech Forum San Francisco to vote on the three finalists. The winner will then be announced from the main stage on March 20th.
In the spirit of social, this contest is very much open. We invite everyone, from around the world, to enter, including cleantech companies, enterprises, non-profits, developers, students and others with a passion for cleantech.
How are you taking cleantech social? Enter the contest now!
GreenOrder at SXSW Eco
From engaging employees in company sustainability efforts to getting consumers to recycle, creating an environment that makes people change their actions can unlock huge potential. As part of our partnership with SXSW Eco, GreenOrder has brought together experts in the field of behavior change for an interactive panel led by GreenOrder Principal Michael Ellis.
Here's a sneak peek of the unique perspectives featured on our panel, "Why Should I? Approaches to Drive Behavior Change."
This blog was co-authored by Samantha Buechner and Tim Bolger.
It can be difficult to get excited about recycling. Squinting to find the number on the bottom of the bottle, rinsing the gunk out, and putting it in the right bin isn’t always convenient and most consumers never see the end benefits of their recycling efforts. But recycling can be more than the monotonous bottle-to-bin routine. Here are a few examples of companies and organizations that have found ways to recycle various materials and use waste to create value.
What if we weren’t afraid to fail?
Failure with a capital F discourages risk taking and prevents us from achieving disruptive innovation. That topic was a major theme this month at the GreenBiz Innovation Forum.
Nicole Boyer, Managing Director at Adaptive Edge, pointed out that Silicon Valley is one of the few places where failure is expected, accepted, and even embraced. If a venture capital firm is considering investing in a startup and that startup hasn’t failed at all, it raises a red flag. If a startup hasn’t failed what has it learned?
What if the whole country adopted this perception of failure, not as a worst-case scenario but rather as a way for companies to experiment, learn and innovate? "I want 100 people failing, I want 1,000 people failing, I want a million people failing," John Wilbanks, then VP of Science at Creative Commons, said. "It costs almost nothing to start a failed software company, it costs almost nothing to start a failed web apps company, but it costs an enormous amount to start a failed sustainability company. And we need to change that, so we can have the same amount of money going in and a lot more innovation coming out."
This sentiment was echoed in brainstorm sessions during the forum. Boyer asked the audience to call out ways to make their companies more innovative. The term “failing forward” was offered as a way to reframe failure, encourage risk taking, and bring the startup spirit to the rest of the business world.