• Program 2006-07



June 12, 2007


Credit Suisse, 11 Madison Avenue, New York, NY 10010

A corporation's organizational framework must facilitate and encourage employee innovation and risk-taking. Frequently, integral decision making must occur at lower employee levels where people have the greatest information on products, markets, customer feedback and relationships. It is critical that innovation across employee levels is encouraged and supported, but how can a corporation ensure innovation and more importantly, sustainable innovation? How do companies internalize a culture and process to ensure consistent innovation? GE's 'Ecomagination' initiative to double global revenue from environmental products by 2012 has radically shifted public attention from the company's reputation as an environmental laggard to a new role as an eco-innovator. Other companies such as Pfizer (green chemistry) and Toyota (hybrid technology) claim growing markets for their products among both consumers and businesses. Arthur D. Little's recent report, The Innovation High Ground, finds that as many as 95% of companies believe that such 'sustainability-driven innovation' has the potential to deliver business value and almost 25% believe it definitely will. As these companies begin to invest in eco-ventures, we ask what this trend implies for consumer environmental choice and for present and past corporate environmental challenges? Where are sustainability-driven innovators headed and what can other companies learn from them?


Michael Gresty, Kinetix [business ecology], m.gresty(at)kinetixllc.com


Ron Gonen, CEO Recyclebank, Rick Steele, CEO Nuride, Michael Gordon, President & Founder of ConsumerPowerline, Jeff Wolfe, CEO of groSolar