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Sustainable Rotterdam

The city is re-inventing itself

Issue-driven Entrepreneurship

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Check the pictures at Flickr

This post is about the Idea Lounge organized by Enviu that I attended yesterday. But first, I'd like to share with you some thoughts I've got about a Do-it-yourself Guide to the Organization of Social Networking Events.

DIY Guide to the Organization of Social Networking Events

1. Gather some peers.
Use your network to gather like-minded people and engage them in the conversation. Meet at the bar, occupy a classroom, or ask at your neighbor association for space.

2. Set up and an agenda. In advance, define what issues are to be addressed and order in which will be presented. If the space you occupy has limited usage time, you may need to define a timeline accompanying the agenda and attacht to it.

3. Define goals for output. What do you aim to achieve with it? The pure act of opening the mind and exchange ideas is rewarding enough to justify the event. Still, you may want to be able to describe tangible and clear goals that may contribute to your own interests. This aplies for orgnizers and attendants. As in #2, plan in advance.

4. Reward contribution. Social networking is all about open contributions by all participants. Contribution is encouraged when acknowledged by peers.

5. Enjoy it. Have fun with it and speak out your thoughts! That's the best reward you can get.


After a complete day at the DDW 06, Saturday could not be less intense and exciting. My good friend Stef van Dongen organized together with the Enviu team a social networking event entitled Idea Lounge. Some forty issue-driven professionals from a variety of backgrounds discussed ideas and presented proposals, while having a drink.

The participative session started with an introduction to issue-driven entrepreneurship by Stef, followed by a presentation of the Escama case by myself. Attendants expressed their views on specific issues of their interest, of which three were selected as working material. In groups, isses were discussed individually and later on proposals aiming to increase sustainability and business value were presented on an elevator speech format.
  • How to ensure long term business sustainability for a product and a business model like Escama?
  • How to maximize efficiency in the current system of second hand cars sold to emerging economies?
  • How to maximize efficiency in office space use
Entrepreneurial minds can provide powerful insight, and this exactly what happened at De Loft. Snacks and drinks provided the perfect ground to interact with many interesting people; at the end of the day it's all about getting engaged in the conversation regarding sustainable solutions.

I'd like to thank everyone who participated at the Idea Lounge and made possible a creative Saturday afternoon. Stef, as soon as I finish Small is the new Big, I'll grab Cradle to Cradle, thanks for the book!

Last Minute Update. Stef reports that "All together we generated more than 200 ideas that were rapped up in three short presentations of each group. Another great day! If you would like to join us next time just check the Enviu website"


posted by Oriol P., 9:18 PM

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