As technology continues to evolve, many innovative thinkers are turning heads. Among them is Jens Martin Skibsted, a Global Partner of VP Foresight & Mobility. Jens is also an entrepreneur, co-author of Expand: Stretching the Future by Design, a thought leader in innovation and green tech, and a Council Member of the Future of Cities and Urbanization team at he World Economic Forum.
Jens believes that the role of tech in solving human problems is where his true passion lies with sustainability being the major focal point of attention. He explains this importance by stating, “If we don’t have a livable planet, the rest doesn’t matter. There are many challenges ahead, and most do not know where to start, but making transportation greener is a great place to initiate change. The more I can help businesses, governments and innovators create and propagate low-energy and zero-emission transport, the better.”
Skibsted’s specific innovations focus on being super low energy intensive and carbon-free. These innovations may not strictly be relegated to tech, though. For instance, he notes that electric bikes that are cool enough that most people would prefer them to a car could make a huge impact. Additionally, small mechanical solutions to improve cycling can also make a huge impact related to transportation.
Jens’s innovative thinking is exactly what the world needs at a time when we are seeing some devastating effects of climate change, including a tremendous uptick in the number of natural disasters and major weather events. And his way of thinking isn’t at odds with the business world. Rather, it is good business.
Skibsted sees tremendous opportunities for new business development in addressing societal goals through emerging technologies. One example includes the Business and Sustainable Development Commission (BSDC), which includes 36 leaders from business, finance, civil society, labor, and international organizations. This organization estimates the annual business development potential of addressing the UN Sustainable Development Goals by 2030 at US $12 trillion, equal to 10% of the world’s GDP. Additionally, meeting these goals could create nearly 400 million jobs and benefit people, communities, and the planet.
Skibsted’s work continues to be filled with addressing needs across the entire mobility spectrum. He notes that, “This day and age is probably the most interesting transition in terms of mobility tech ever. There is an ongoing turf war – lighter than airships vs. mainstream drones, 3-wheel bikes versus 3-wheel cars, cars versus electric buses or bikes, off-grid versus smart grid versus existing infrastructure, etc. No one knows what the future holds. Green means of transport will shape cities, infrastructure, and, indirectly, societies.”
Skibsted’s work demonstrates the profound impact that innovative thinking can have on the world’s future and the people living in it. While many tech leaders have become complacent in business, Jens and other forward-thinking leaders understand that the transformative power of innovation can be harnessed to create a better world. These individuals will lead the charge in ushering in a new era that will continue to work for the betterment of all mankind.