Global change leader Jon Creyts, ‘Professor Zero’ Dr Ann Smith and sustainability expert Dickon Pinner join the Aspiring Conversations speaker lineup.

Climate Risk, Sustainability and Innovation

Three international experts on the impact of climate challenges and sustainability for the business community join the line-up of speakers for the Aspiring Conversations Festival of Ideas in April.

Climate Risk, Sustainability and Innovation will take place at the Aspiring Conversations Festival at 9am on Saturday 4 April.

The speakers will consider the challenges faced by business, and how innovation and clean technologies can meet those challenges, accelerate climate solutions on a global scale and build longer-term sustainable business models.

Three speakers have been confirmed for the session – Dr Ann Smith (also known as Professor Zero), global change leader Jon Creyts from the Rocky Mountain Institute in Colorado, along with clean technologies and sustainability expert Dickon Pinner.

Aspiring Conversations director Philip Tremewan says climate change is the greatest issue currently being faced by the world right now and this is reflected in Saturday morning’s focus on the issue.

The Climate Risk, Sustainability and Innovation session will be followed by A Careful Revolution with discussion on how we make the changes to the way our country runs and whether individual lifestyle changes really can make a difference.

“These two sessions bring very clear focus to what is becoming an increasingly important and urgent issue. We look forward to some powerful and thoughtful discussion.”

Dr Ann Smith was Chief Executive of Toitū Envirocare where she became known as Professor Zero for her role in the development of the carboNZero and CEMARS programmes. She also led the early life cycle carbon footprint work for the wine and kiwifruit sectors. She is a Fellow of the Institute of Environmental Management and Assessment.

Global change leader Jon Creyts has a focus on clean energy transition and comes with extensive experience in disruptive technologies (especially solar, storage, and blockchain), energy efficiency, and urban transformation.

Dickon Pinner, based in San Francisco, leads McKinsey & Company’s global work in clean technologies and the firm’s Sustainability Practice. He helps companies address the resource-productivity challenges they will face in terms of energy sources, transportation, food, land, water, and basic materials.  He co-authored McKinsey Global Institute’s report on Climate Risk & Response.

Climate Risk, Sustainability and Innovation is one of 11 speaker sessions at Aspiring Conversations, and is presented in association with our Knowledge Partner, McKinsey & Company.

Aspiring Conversations takes place at the Lake Wanaka Centre from Friday 3 to Sunday 5 April and features 26 speakers covering a wide range of topics and featuring high-calibre speakers from all walks of life – scientists, historians, politicians, musicians, doctors, poets and writers.

Ticket sales for Aspiring Conversations are strong with a number of sessions close to filling up.

Get your tickets now from or on 022 4 849 669.

Sponsors’ corner

A word from the awesome team at beSure – Tailored Insurance.

Jackie Boyd and her team at beSure – Tailored Insurance pride themselves on being active members of our community and very happy to sponsor Aspiring Conversations and the Festival of Colour. Clients are their priority, understanding their needs and providing the appropriate solutions.  If they can help you, phone 03 443 7321.