Product, Service & Design Innovation

The latest products, services, design approaches and business models that are helping organizations of all sizes deliver on their sustainability ambitions and establish a new business as usual.

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Trending: Food Startups Find Creative Ways to Release Products Without Expo West

Trending: Food Startups Find Creative Ways to Release Products Without Expo West

Necessity is the mother of invention. That’s what led many entrepreneurs to create their product or service innovations in the first place — and that adage is definitely in play as businesses large and small are forced to pivot, almost daily, as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to unfold.

The Continued Evolution of Plant-Based Products — and the Ones We’re Not Hearing About

We must look at all categories where we can offer plant-based and sustainably sourced choices for intentional consumers. There has never been a time where we need to be more collectively conscious of the products we consume, and acknowledge their impacts on our long-term health.

Trending: The Rise and Rise of Plant-Based Proteins

Impossible Foods announces another step in its journey toward world domination; while conventional protein giants Bumble Bee and Cargill get in on the meat-free fun with a new partnership, private-label plant-based products.

Indigenous Innovations Provide Blueprint for Climate-Resilient Design

A new book, "Lo—TEK: Design by Radical Indigenism," highlights centuries-old technologies that provide a powerful toolkit for sustainable architecture and design in the modern age.

Report: Digital Sector Can Lead Transformative Systems Change for Climate-Stable Future

A new report by Future Earth asserts that digital transformations unfolding today could help enable the systems transformations necessary for mitigating the climate crisis. 

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Tech for a Better World: A Look at Standout Products from CES 2020

Health. Accessibility. Food. Smart everything. CES 2020 showed that technology should not only be about greater speed or convenience in our lives — it should positively impact people and the world.

Regenerative Agriculture: Not Just for Beef Anymore

Beef is naturally at the forefront of the conversation around regenerative ag because of the direct and dramatic improvement properly managed ruminants can have on soil quality. But that doesn’t mean that other foods shouldn’t be held to the same standards.

Why I Invested in a 'Smart Gun' Company

While money and special interests are unlikely to leave US politics, I’m optimistic that Biofire can change the conversation around guns: Why can’t a for-profit company build safer handguns?

Climate Action Through Biomimicry: Innovation for the SDGs

The tagline for this year’s Biomimicry Global Design Challenge, “Design° for People + Planet,” asks participants to look at what degree of change they will make for a particular SDG, using nature as their mentor.

Collaboration: A Catalyst for Cutting-Edge Change

It takes a village of visionaries and specialists to galvanize innovative ideas and bring them to fruition. In a recent webinar, Shaw examined a case study in organizations coming together to take a “people-centric approach to sustainability.”

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Biomimicry Institute Seeks Nature-Inspired Innovations for $100K Ray of Hope Prize®

The Ray of Hope Prize competition gives startups a chance to get their biomimetic innovations to market; entrepreneurs with nature-inspired design solutions for climate mitigation, carbon sequestration or the SDGs have until December 31 to apply.

25 Years On: Lessons Learned from Interface’s Ongoing Sustainability Journey

Why are lessons learned by a flooring company relevant? Many of the challenges we had to solve are the same that companies are struggling with as they pursue sustainability. Our accomplishments are significant because they show it is possible to transform a business and put sustainability at the core.

Sanitary Products, Soft Drinks and Safety Locks: An FMCG Approach to Fighting Period Poverty in Tanzania

'Period poverty' — in which women and girls struggle to access and afford menstrual products — is particularly bad in sub-Saharan Africa. That’s why a new initiative in Tanzania is taking a 21st-century, FMCG approach to a centuries-old problem.

The Biosphere Rules: Sustainability Is a Destination, Not a Journey

Envision a future where every material thing in our world is made out of a handful of materials, carefully selected to be safe, healthy and infinitely recyclable. Everything from coffee cup to countertop could be broken down and used as raw materials for a new shawl or lampshade.

The Biosphere’s Guide to Foolproofing Sustainability, Part 6: Function Over Form

Sustainability experts for decades have been exhorting managers to focus more on the function their products deliver and less on the product itself. Biosphere Rule #5, Function Over Form, is focused on fulfilling customers’ functional needs in ways that sustain the value cycle.

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SB Oceans Showcases Solutions Aimed at Restoring Our Aquatic Abundance

AI, a conscientious credit card, social plastic and underwater forests are just a few of the solutions showcased at SB Oceans that can help us restore their abundance.

The Biosphere’s Guide to Foolproofing Sustainability, Part 5: Sustainable Product Platforms

Biosphere Rule #4 is about taking your value cycle, built with parsimonious materials and a power-autonomous energy system, and creating a production platform upon which you can build a whole suite of products — producing profit-amplifying economies of scale and scope.

Foolproofing Sustainability, Part 3: Value Cycling

The model we use to teach MBAs about production is the value chain. But there's a problem: It imagines a linear world in which materials can be constantly pushed through an assembly line with no consequence.

Foolproofing Sustainability, Part 2: Materials Parsimony

The amazing diversity of life is founded on dramatic materials parsimony; almost everything in nature is built out of just four elements. Whereas, what we humans have gotten since the Industrial Revolution is *materials proliferation.*

Beyond Global Thinking: NASA’s Jim Adams on Ensuring Humanity’s Future

Ahead of his upcoming keynote at SB’19 Madrid and 50 years after the Moon landing, we spoke with Jim Adams — recently retired Deputy Chief Technologist at NASA — about the moonshot thinking humanity now needs.

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