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This is week two of our 12-week Sustainability Launchpad with UCD Engineering and the Energy Institute. This week our focus is on creating the value propositions which need to have environmental, commercial and social sustainability impacts.

The purpose of a value proposition is to clearly and simply communicate the problem that the company solves and the benefits to the customer. A value proposition is not about the solution or the product. It’s about solving a problem.

The questions we’re validating are:

  • What is the problem being solved and for whom?
  • What are the clear benefits to customers if we solve this problem?
  • What’s the impact of solving this problem?

Examining value propositions that are centred around sustainability raises interesting questions, both economic and ethical. For example:

  • What happens when your value proposition is less tangible than providing a service at a cost to the consumer?
  • What happens when it is focused around causing positive effects on the environment that we all share?

Environmental sustainability is relevant to us all. “Sustainable development” means “meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs”- Brundtland Commission.  This means minimising the burning of fossil fuel, which causes global warming, designing energy-efficient buildings and creating sustainable food sources.

Two problems we’re looking to solve are:

1.     The applications of blockchain in the energy industry, in association with our industry partner EnerNOC.

  • What if blockchain could facilitate the distribution of electricity automatically?
  • Could this result in less cost to the consumer, less wasted energy and the idealised use of green energy sources?

2.     The death of bees is a serious threat to our ecosystem. Bees are dying. If all the bees in the world die humans will not survive.

  • How can we prevent their extinction?

Throughout the next 10 weeks our five teams will continue to search for new business models that are commercially viable coupled with having a “sustainability” impact.

If you are in the sustainability sector and have comments we would love to hear from you.

Circular Economy
Mary Cronin
Author: Mary Cronin
September 28, 2017
Mary is an innovation specialist, systems thinker and circular economy facilitator. As the founder of UpThink Innovation Agency, Mary works with SMEs and large organisations as a circular economy/climate change/ESG consultant.