As the Director of Client Strategy and a champion of sustainability here at Emerge, I get to attend a variety of corporate-responsibility, sustainability, and social-innovation conferences. I’m pretty lucky. Emerge has a presence at these events throughout the year. There, we learn about new trends and technologies; and gain insights from leaders in corporate, non-profit, government, and higher-education sectors. Above all, we get inspired by change-agents who are leading the charge.
This month is no exception. In a matter of days, I’ll be traveling to Washington D.C. for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation’s Corporate Citizenship Conference, happening November 16th and 17th. This year’s focus: Purpose & Progress.
Here at Emerge, we like to push the envelope of what’s possible. We collaborate with clients to take their sustainability and citizenship to the next level. We engage with new partners on business, digital, and mobile strategy, then build the digital platforms that bring these things to life. Whatever we do, our work ladders to indispensable digital experiences that enable our clients to scale business. In its simplest form, together, we co-create change.
In order to build purpose and make progress, we believe corporations and organizations need what we call corporate courage (#CorporateCourage). An article this summer (In an Innovation Economy, the Courageous Will Inherit the Earth), published on Emerge Insights, outlined what this means. In part: Purpose reveals the path. The path illuminates action. And action builds toward cultural currency rooted in consumer trust.
Next week, I’ll be representing Emerge the USCCF confab — our first time there. And I’m excited to see how other brands and leaders are redefining purpose, progress, and success.
Purpose, Progress, and Panels
Here are just a few of the sessions and speakers I’ll be attending. (All panel details, plus links to each speaker, can be found by scrolling to the bottom portion of the Purpose & Progress page.)
Plenary Panel – Purpose and Business Strategy
Wednesday, November 16
9:30am to 10:15am
On this panel, business-unit heads will discuss how they have used purpose to motivate employees, attract and engage customers, strengthen supply chains, and achieve business success while also making a difference in society. Panelists will also discuss how purpose can serve as a ballast amidst crises, internal and external influences, economic challenges, risks, and changing environments.
Wesley Avery, Legal Counsel, DSM North America
Angela Baker, Director, Qualcomm Wireless Reach
Jamey Millar, Senior Vice President, Managed Markets & Government Affairs, GSK
Richard Crespin, CEO, CollaborateUp; Senior Fellow, U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation
Plenary Panel – Progress through Disruption
Thursday, November 17
9:40am to 10:25am
In this panel, we will hear from change-makers who have created new solutions, formed unexpected partnerships, and developed new markets that had a positive impact on both their business and society. Learn how you can be a disruptive force for good in your company.
Val Smith, Director, Corporate Sustainability, Citi
Bart Newman, Chief Operating Officer, Thrive Farmers International Inc.
Sean Milliken, Head of Global Social Innovation, PayPal
Elizabeth Fay, Director of Policy and Government Relations, Cargill
Ed Martin, Chief Executive Officer, GoodX
Patterning Usage – Innovations in Digital Finance and Financial Capability
Thursday, November 17
2:15pm to 3:30pm
Explore how digital technologies can not only be catalysts for access to credit, insurance, and savings, but also how such technologies — improved by behavioral insights — can bolster financial capability.
Olivia White, Partner, McKinsey & Company
Sarah Middleton, Vice President of Global Corporate Citizenship at PIMCO; Executive Director of the PIMCO Foundation
Leora Klapper, Lead Economist, World Bank
Rosita Najmi, Program Officer, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
Partnering for Change
If you’ll be attending the 2016 Corporate Citizenship Conference, find me, Scott Rich, in any of the above sessions, or at the conference networking events — or reach me online to talk about what #CorporateCourage means to you.
If you won’t be in D.C. next week, you can check out what’s happening in real time and join the conversation on Twitter (@CorpCourage). In addition, we’ll follow-up after later with our thoughts on the best of the #USCCFPurpose conference.
Together, let’s set a new bar.