Last week SE Forum had the privilege of being partners to a summit called The Bridge in Lund, Sweden. The theme was “pushing humanity forward by linking science and business”. It was a fascinating collection of people there and I, for one, met with several players which otherwise would be have been hard to meet, and even harder to engage in in-depth conversations.
The summit aimed to be the bridge between science and business to advance humanity. While this was happening in Lund two of my colleagues were out on their own adventures, following up on how our Accelerator participants from last year are doing. That could be viewed as a disconnect perhaps? National and international players in science and business all gathered in Lund in the west while our social entrepreneurs are working for change in low-income countries elsewhere. However, I would argue the opposite. This was actually a great example of how the bridge can function as discussed at the summit. Because during my time at the event it became clear to me that I was talking about our social entrepreneurs as the solutions to the gap between business and science. In fact, our social entrepreneurs are the real building blocks of the bridge. They’re championing the development of technology to push humanity forward, and they are doing it using business principles.
Take one of the entrepreneurs who my colleague visited for example, Elsa Marie D’Silva. Her Safecity platform aggregates crowd-sourced data of sexual harassment and violence into hot spots, performing analytics and uses the location trends to engage local police and government to improve public safety. It’s been so successful that it recently won 3rd prize in the Intercultural Innovation Award, by the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations and the BMW Group. That is certainly bridging the gap at the same time as making the world a better place for many women in India.
Warm summer wishes!
PS. If you would like to see more from the follow-up trip, check out our Instagram account where we’ve shared photos and updates from the entire trip.