Foresight Board Chair, Dr. Phyllis Speser, made a presentation to the United Nations Development Programs International Conference on Entrepreneurship in Bangkok Thailand on February 8, 2018. In her talk she focused on how the often discussed tensions between traditional entrepreneurship and social entrepreneurship is a false dichotomy. She used the current water crisis in Cape Town, South Africa as an example, noting that if you had a low cost, high volume, efficient water desalination technology which could be implemented in a few months you could make a fortune there. She offered other examples from Thailand and the US which are less dramatic but still money makers. She then explored how to get these new technologies into the market by using an ecosystem approached based on supply chain entry and management. Phyllis concluded by noting successfully entrepreneurs build companies that address real and acknowledged problems. In today's world of global climate change and population pressure on resources there are amply opportunities to find problems which are both money makes and further sustainable development goals.
The next day, Phyllis meet with student entrepreneurs from the ASEAN region to provide coaching and mentoring on how to make their start-ups thrive.