New Biz Models: Cradle to Cradle

New Biz Models: Cradle to Cradle


The Department of the Environment in the UK estimates that 2 billion tonnes of waste products is generated in the European Union each year: a third from agriculture and forestry, another third from construction and demolition, and the remainder from mining and quarrying, manufacturing, municipal waste and energy production. The most predominant form of waste management is landfill use: in 2004, a survey of waste management in the European Union found that eight countries rely on landfill for over 50% of their waste disposal, and five use incineration to meet over a third of their waste management needs. Only a few countries relied on recycling as their primary waste management solution, and in the United States recycling adoption has only reached 28%.

YGL Response

Closed-loop economics will call for a re-examination of company strategy. Consumer goods companies, for example, will be forced to go beyond their position as value-adding intermediaries between raw material suppliers and end consumers, and instead broaden their reach into new sectors of the economic loop. Far from buying raw materials, manufacturing products, and selling them on to retailers or end consumers, consumer goods companies will have to take responsibility for the impact of their products at every stage from production and manufacture to consumption and recycling. This extended reach will require companies to manage larger and more complex networks of relationships beyond the traditional supplier-customer dynamic, and to more actively manage the whole-life impact of their products.

Key 2010 Accomplishments

Held session with YGLs in Tianjin, China and held a Webinar with interested YGLs

Next Milestones

Taskforce reception and Davos launch of the YGL Taskforce position paper (private side event). Will include Bill McDonough the father of Cradle to Cradle as keynote.


Peter Lacy, David Rosenberg, and Jill Otto.

More Information: Empower Through Mobile


The AppBridge mission is to empower “The Bottom Billion” youth through universally accessible, demand-driven and market-oriented educational mobile applications by synergizing an open source technology platform with a cooperative ecosystem of education and health content providers, academic institutions, developers, telecom operators, sponsors and end-users.


Through collaboration and in partnership with others, we are developing an open source, cloud-based digital platform designed to connect talented mobile application developers with formal and informal education and health content providers, and co-create a powerful distribution channel to bridge the digital divide and educate young people in the bottom billion through their cellular phones.  

Each educational app will be submitted to The AppBridge platform, vetted, distributed to partner Telecom Operators and promoted in “The AppBridge Zone”, where it will be available to end-users.  The AppBridge platform will track the download activity and usage of each distributed App, enabling “real time” feedback and allowing for a dynamic, evolving virtual educational experience for users.

AppBridge is building an online collection, creation, and distribution platform to bring free or low-cost mobile applications to those at risk or in poverty, enabling education, employment and economic opportunity. As a Collection Platform: Local partners identify specific community needs or submit local content.  As a Creation Platform: Through the AppBridge Forum, organizations work directly with partner mobile app developers to create apps addressing these specific needs. As a Distribution Platform: Partner telecommunications companies distribute the apps to the target communities.

With an estimated 3.8 billion mobile subscribers in the developing world, there is enormous opportunity to provide formal and informal educational tools to individuals who do not otherwise have access to basic math, literacy, and health information. The AppBridge is committed to co-creating an important “blueprint” for how digital and information based solutions can be launched in a frictionless way in critical environments. This is a non-profit social enterprise.


The AppBridge concept grew out of collaboration between Lahore University of Management Sciences in Pakistan, YGL and Professor Umar Saif, his students and YGL Margo Drakos in the fall of 2010.  Umar and Margo oversaw the development of two interactive Mathematics SMS App Games by two teams of engineering students at LUMS. The games emulate the experience of a student sitting through a math quiz in a classroom and enable a group of people to compete with each other using their cell phones. We asked the LUMS students to document their app development and testing on their own blogs:

After the Apps were developed, Margo found the challenge was promoting and distributing the Apps to the target end-users. While in Davos this January at the annual World Economic Forum Summit, Margo discussed the concept in a number of meetings with academic institutions, corporate leaders, education content providers and telecom partners.  She discovered there was overwhelming commitment to create, sponsor, and distribute educational Apps for young adults with limited access to education and a number of fellow Young Global Leaders who shared her passion.  The AppBridge was conceived.

In June 2012, AppBridge launched the first Ideas & Apps Challenge Competition in the Philippines to accelerate building the community. The goal of the Challenge is to engage local citizens (by country) to identify local problems in the education, health, job-skill training or financial literacy space – and propose ideas for or build mobile applications to address these local challenges.   The Challenge was launched in the Philippines at a Start-Up Weekend, Globe Telecom is sponsoring the prizes and promoting the submitted applications to its community, and Exist Global has provided the web development.  A distinguished judging panel including YGLs and Senior Forum members, has awarded cash prizes, mentorship and incubation. Over 5,000 people in the Philippines voted online for the People’s Choice Award.

Due to natural disasters in the Philippines in late 2012, the Apps Competition phase has been delayed and will launch in 2013.

The Ideas & Apps Challenge India is launching this Spring, as part of the Global Education and Leadership Initiative in partnership with major internet corporations, technical schools and universities and a telco in India.  There will be a top prize of $15,000 for the winning mobile application, in addition to mentorship and incubation.

Next Steps

  • We are currently establishing a 501(c)(3).
  • We are working to develop the open source, cloud based platform to receive and distribute the mobile apps.
  • In the next year, our objective is to launch two pilot programs in India and the Middle East focusing on English Language Training. Each pilot program will include the following work-flow and testing:
  • Create our first cooperative ecosystem of education and health content providers, academic institutions, developers, telecom operators, sponsors and end-users.
  • Build the open source cloud-based platform.
  • Enable student developers to “adopt-an-app” through the platform and go through the content request process with our educational content providers to build an effective app for the target population in India.
  • Receive the apps, test the apps and distribute to the appropriate App Stores.
  • Work with our partners in India to effectively promote the “AppBridge Zone” Apps to the target end-users.
  • Track the download activity and usage of each distributed App to our ecosystem.
  • Engage with and garner feedback from our ecosystem.
  • Refine our ecosystem accordingly and scale our platform to other regions.


We are a 2011 Member of the Clinton Global Initiative

We are currently working with the following Partners:

  • Accel Partners
  • InfoSys
  • Lahore University of Management and Sciences
  • McGraw-Hill
  • Mobile Movements
  • MorphLabs
  • Openwave
  • SwitchCase Group
  • World Economic Forum and Forum of Young Global Leader

More Information

Please visit, or contact Margo Drakos at

Rethinking Urban Mobility

Cities are for people

This YGL GRI develops collaborative strategies for promoting efficient urban mobility (e.g. battery standards, cross-industry collaboration, effective multi-modal transportation etc.) How would CO2 efficient urban means of transport ideally be if they were rethought systemically? How do we improve safety for all (motorized vehicles, cyclists, pedestrians) and reduce localized concentrated air and noise pollution and yet reduce congestion and travel time? Can we create powerful alternatives by cross-industry collaborative efforts, using existing technologies?

“Our cities are becoming more and more crowded. A city needs cars like a fish needs a bicycle primarily because you can’t use all that speed because of the many obstacles. (…) in 20-30 years people will not primarily use cars to get around in the cities”. Dean Kamen


In January, at the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting 2009 in Davos-Klosters, Switzerland, United Kingdom Prime Minister and Group of 20 Chairman Gordon Brown appealed for “business to formulate with us the economic and policy conditions that will incentivize their investment and that will bring the low-carbon economy into being.” To this end, he called on the Forum to facilitate a “new business-led mission in support of an ambitious climate agreement in Copenhagen, focused on the policies that will lead to business investment in a low-carbon recovery.”

Between 1990 and 2007, transport emissions increased by a third while emissions from other sectors decreased; the share of transport in total emissions rose from 1990 to 2007. More than half the global population now lives in urban environments, by 2030 an estimated 60% and by 2050 a whopping 80%. Although this is a quick and dirty approximation it does indicate the need for rethinking Urban Mobility.

The problem is even more pressing in developing countries. With an increase in population and a steady stream of people moving into cities, there is a huge pressure on mobility infrastructure in cities which will become even more acute in the coming decades. The developing world, or „first billion‟ and their cities have evolved in a particular direction in the 20th century. It is absolutely impractical, unviable and impossible that the „next six billion‟ representing the developing world can follow a similar „car-centric‟ model. There is a crying need for integrated system thinking for the (mega) cities of the future to work out mobility requirements vis-á-vis individual, city, and environment cost.

Together cities are already bigger than any individual market or alliance.

Meanwhile, urban populations are becoming increasingly uniform, as a consequence of globalization. Already, cities have more challenges in common than countries have with each other and have less difference – no foreign policy and military and such. Inter-city governance structures are slowly forming. The need to reduce CO2 emissions, a global, urban market, and new, altered traffic habits have combined to contribute to the generation of new needs and new products, under the name of “Urban Mobility”.

Are there opportunities for private – public partnership to respectively tackle urban CO2 emissions and leveraging a new market?


The main idea is to create an Urban Mobility authority in order to connect the stakeholders within urban transport and create common standards and promote a holistic approach.

Decreases CO2 emission globally, harmful pollution locally and improves lifestyle, security and health issues in cities.


It creates an Urban Mobility authority allowing for the creation of new product typologies, systems and business models for urban transport.


The success criteria would be to create an urban mobility authority whose initiatives spur cross- disciplinary cooperation. The ambition is to find a pilot city that would implement the policy recommendations.


To make people within very old and stable silos communicate. No immediate authority on the subject. To overcome stakeholder‟s short sited self-interest.

• We need to define urban mobility as unique field rather than a subset of ecology, urbanity, transport
• We need to prioritize the greening of cities • We need to rethink business models / incentives to encourage cross-disciplinary collaboration
• We need to integrate existing infrastructure, public and private offerings and potentially smart grids
• We need to cherry pick best features from private and public transport respectively and have a place for all relevant areas of multi-modal transportation including motorized and non-motorized transportation
• We need to address distinctly different demographic needs across cities and map-out city typologies
• We need to integrate new social behavior and tools into commuting • We need to apply off the shelf technologies to spur new solution • We need to bring together distinctly different and relevant fields of expertise and industries


Siddhartha Lal,, +91 11 41437616
Jens Martin Skibsted,, +45 28 14 49 18

The Oath Project


The global financial crisis of 2008 and the ensuing economic recession has brought under question the character and trustworthiness of business managers around the world. Unlike other professions such as medicine or law, which explicitly recognize a commitment to serving the greater good and formally espouse a strict code of conduct, management is yet to do either. Widespread views of management often subordinate business contributions to the greater good to the maximization of short-term financial returns, and emphasize a narrow view of managerial responsibilities as serving the interest of shareholders over clients, employees, or society at large. These views misrepresent the full complexity of the management profession and its role in driving global prosperity and, as we have painfully learned, can have disastrous economic consequences when taken to the extreme.

YGL Response

The YGL Global Business Oath aims to transform the value system dominant today among business leaders around the world by: (a) Explicitly recognizing that the ultimate purpose of management is to serve society by bringing together people and resources to create sustainable and inclusive prosperity that no single individual can create alone; (b) Recognizing that the effects (good and bad) of managerial decisions on the welfare of society are amplified by the accumulation of resources under legal corporations; (c) Proposing a code of conduct – a modern-day Hippocratic Oath of Business – that spells out a commitment to “doing no harm” throughout the practice of management. Hence, the Hippocratic Oath of Business aims to commit managers and business school graduates throughout the world to a common Code of Ethics and raise their awareness of ethical values such as integrity, honesty, reliability and responsibility.

Key Accomplishments

Starting in 2009, YGLs developed the “hippocratic oath for business” together with 300+ YGLs worldwide, in a year-long process which ensured the applicability of it to the business context but also in different cultural contexts. The YGLs also worked with other “Oath” organisations to share experience and attempt to harmonize the different codes. A website was launched ( for people to sign the oath, individual YGLs secured their boards and organisations to sign. To date, more than 6,900 current and future business leaders have signed the “Hippocratic Oath for Business”, and have made a personal commitment to lead with purpose, act with integrity, and understand the reach, power and responsibility of business.

Next Milestones

The Global Business Oath will be set up as an independent NGO with a dedicated secretariat. The governing board of the organisation will be 50% YGLs but will also include other Oath initiatives (MBA Oath, Aspen Institute, etc.). The YGL Directorate is working to ensure that current Active Member YGLs remain involved in the appropriate manner.


Angel Cabrera, Samer I. Asfour, Tewodros Ashenafi, Elena Barmakova, Gustavo Cardoso, François-Philippe Champagne, Adrian D. Cheok, Andrew L. Cohen, Arturo Condo, Jennifer Corriero, Jitesh Gadhia, Suhas Gopinath, Haakon of Norway, Lars Hinrichs, Christopher Jahns, Penny Low, Leslie W. Maasdorp, Aaron McCormack, Patricia Menendez-Cambo, David Munro, Henrik Naujoks, Efrat Peled, Paolo Ribotta, Alvaro Rodriguez Arregui, Daniel Sachs, Dan Shine, Jens Martin Skibsted.

Non-YGL Members:
Rakesh Khurana, Nitin Nohria, Manfred Reichl

Looking For

We need as many YGLs as possible to sign the oath and to use their platforms of influence such as business leaders associations (e.g. Mongolia) or boards of directors and senior management teams (e.g. Banco Compartamos in Mexico) to encourage other acting business professionals to join the movement.

Go, sign the oath now! Also, you can check out who has pledged to date here.

Global Dignity


For real progress to be made in this world we need to strengthen what unites us in stead of constantly focusing on what sets us apart. One thing that all human beings have in common is that we all want our dignity to be recognized. We want to strengthen the fabric of our common humanity so that we realize that we are interconnected, that we are all in this together and that the hardships that is experienced by another person also affects us.

YGL Response

Since 2005, they have worked with many Young Global Leaders, Global Shapers and other partners in over 50 countries reaching more than 400,000 youth. Global Dignity has set itself the goal of building bridges and promoting the one thing that unites us all as human beings, regardless of our ethnicity, religion, political views or other differences: human dignity. The aim is to encourage children in particular

Since 2008, we have organized Global Dignity Day in October (held this year on October 17, 2012). On this day we go into schools around the world to focus on the fundamentals of dignity in society as well as in our daily life. ).  During Global Dignity Day, they visit with local schools and communities around the world teaching a “course in dignity” to youth and spreading the mission of helping youth and adults become their best self and helping others to achieve the same.

This year, Global Dignity Day was celebrated in 50 counties and reached over 250,000 youth. Today, Global Dignity has Chairs in 34 countries and five organizational partners. It is a benchmark for successful YGL initiatives that are self-sustaining.

In addition to Dignity Day we want to spur a global conversatoin focused on dignity and we promote dignity centred leadership and decition making.


Global Dignity is an autonomous non-profit, non-criticism and non-partisan project. We wish to be inspiration-based; commending and encouraging best practice and dignity centered leadership rather than criticizing shortcomings.

The mission of the Dignity Project is to implement globally the universal right of every human being to lead a dignified life. This is a paradigm shift in thinking about our global challenges, a new language and a mindset to approach issues of poverty, peace, and progress.
We all have the ability to increase the dignity of others and thus we increase our own dignity.  The dignity approach works on all levels: it works for children and for adults, it works for men and for women, and it works on the micro and macro level. Our aspiration is to eventually make every day of every year a day of dignity for men and women around the world, especially those without a voice to raise for themselves.
This idea depends on seeing dignity in action, and   in all walks of life, based on 5 dignity principles.


Co-Founders: Prince Haakon of Norway, Pekka Himanen, John Hope Bryant

Board Members: Prince Haakon of Norway, Pekka Himanen, John Hope Bryant, Hilde Schwab, Irene Woo Chu

Supported by Young Global Leaders

Looking For

We have a concept that is proven and works. We need scaling. For that we need funding. We are currently looking at how we can reach as many children through our Dignity Day concept as possible. We would like to set up a Global Dignity office with one or two people employed that can coordinate the activities around the world.

Get Involved

  • Educate yourself on Dignity and learn the Dignity curriculum here.
  • Sign the Dignity Principles and make them instrumental in your daily lives
  • You can host the next Global Dignity Day in your local– next global event to be held in October 2010, but you can make this happen any day of the week!
  • to learn more.

To learn more please go to our website and feel free to contact us!

Table For Two


On our planet of 7 billion people, one billion suffer from hunger while another billion suffer from obesity and lifestyle-related diseases. This global dichotomy – where people are dying of hunger while others are literally eating themselves to death – is both ironic and alarming. It represents the world today – one that we need to redesign.

YGL Response

Table for Two addresses these two issues simultaneously. The mechanism is simple: every time you eat a healthy Table for Two meal at a participating company cafeteria or restaurant, 20 cents is donated to fund a school meal in a country suffering from hunger. As you prevent your own obesity, you are also helping to alleviate a child’s hunger. Your meal is his/her meal. You are eating a win-win meal together at a Table for Two.

Key Accomplishments

The program is fully established with over 600 partners including corporations, universities, restaurants, government offices, convenience stores and other food establishments; providing over 16 m meals served to date (enough to feed 72,000 children for an entire schooyear). The programme has expanded into 12 countries across Asia, North America and Europe since 2010. Additionally,  TFT model has been applied to vending machines (through snacks and drinks), coffee, healthy cocktails, and retail products. In Japan, an iPhone application has been released which works by taking a picture of your meal the app then calculates the calories and assesses the nutritional content.  1 yen is donated per healthy meal uploaded via the application.

Events held in 2010:
2010/05/03: TABLE FOR TWO USA kick-off event at Columbia University (New York, NY)
2010/07/21: Lecture and Reception at Japan Society (New York, NY)
2010/07/22: Lecture and Book Signing at Kinokuniya (New York, NY)
2010/07/25: Speech at Japan Block Fair (New York, NY)
2010/07/27: Lecture at UN Forum (New York, NY)
2010/09/10: Informal talk and gathering with Net Impact and JET members (San Francisco, CA)
2010/09/14: Talk at San Francisco State University (San Francisco, CA)
2010/09/15: Talk at University of San Francisco, hosted by Net Impact (San Francisco, CA)

2012 Accomplishments:
2012/04/01: TFT launched at UC Berkeley (at the Berkeley Student Food Collective for a one-month trial)
2012/04/02: TFT launched at UC Davis
2012/04/06: TFT launched at American University
2012/04/06: TFT launched at San Francisco State University

Next Milestones

Table for Two is expanding its impact to include cutting-edge interventions related to sustainable food security with such partners as Columbia University’s Earth Institute and the United Nations World Food Programme.


Kumi Fujisawa and Kohei Takashima

More Information:

Table for Two website:

Table for Two Facebook page:

YGL Public Leadership Task Force Initiative


The World Economic Forum has undertaken an ambitious and timely effort to rethink and redesign the public systems, institutions and processes that enable global collaboration. While the structures of the existing global order undoubtedly need to change and be improved if we want to effectively tackle 21st century challenges, the new arrangements and organizations will ultimately only be as good as the people who make them work. That is, even the best institutions and systems need outstanding leadership if they are to excel.


This initiative explores how to foster the next generation of effective leaders in the public sector. In addition to holding sessions at World Economic Forum regional events, they are organizing a Master Class on Public Sector Leadership in July, 2011.


In 2010 we gathered sentiments on why YGLs would or would not run, hosted a master class of more than 70 YGLs in New York during the summer of 2011 (report can be found here). This group has work closely YGL Community Partner, PWC, and would invite you to peruse the below links and articles related to Public Leadership.

In early December, 2012, more than 30 YGLs from 15 different countries convened in Washington DC to take part in the first Young Global Leaders Public Leadership Boot Camp. The boot camp opened by presenting YGLs with a serious reflection on the sacrifices associated with running for public office and then over the subsequent two days focused on a practical combination of skills building  and inspiration from past and currently elected officials, including three YGLs, who talked about the challenges and highlights of their work. Participants also received private tours of Washington DC’s national monuments, the White House and US Capitol. The organizers were especially proud to hear several YGLs declare their intention to run for office. A task force is now thinking about how to replicate the boot camp in other regions and how to support YGLs in their political life.


The initiative is also planning to run a mini-boot camp at the YGL Annual Summit in Myanmar for local Burmese leaders and interested YGLs alike.
Each participant will walk away with a personalized political plan and next steps, as well as his or her own political biography, public speaking,media, technology, and debating skills.
The cohort will be encouraged and supported to stay connected and support each other through their political lives.


The War for Talent –

The World’s Leadership Deficit –

Australia’s Public Leadership Deficit –


Questions, comments or a desire to participant can be directed to Lisa Witter, YGL 2012 and Task Force Chair at