Forward 2022: 3 big takeaways for a regenerative future

Earlier this year, we had the opportunity to launch Forward 2022 – our first annual event organized alongside Sifted. From the very beginning, we recognized our unique responsibility to shape conversations around climate change mitigation within our ecosystem. It was our goal to launch a platform that took accountability beyond vague ideas of sustainability. Bringing together some of the brightest minds working to build a regenerative future, Forward 2022 allowed us to take the first of many steps to surpass net-zero initiatives. 

At Forward, we invited cross-sector experts to set sail with us to Ungdomsøen island off the coast of Copenhagen. We were honored to host top voices from 14 countries as they represented startups and scaleups, corporates, universities, and EU cleantech initiatives, as well as domain-specific investors.  

Organized via an atypical format, moderators led discussions within three tracks: rethinking our food system, driving the energy transition, and reimagining society. Throughout 9 round tables, participants within each track put forward comprehensive commitments toward a greener world. 

Track 1: Rethinking our food system

Participants within this track confronted a big question: how do we go beyond net-zero to become a regenerative society? Closely examining the real-world impact on our food systems, the Forward 2022 community put forth the following commitment: 

We need to push all innovations

We commit to working together across verticals in ag and food tech, learning from each other and moving beyond any boundaries as all these solutions have nature at their hearts.

Track 2: Driving the energy transition

Tackling the transition towards renewable energy, participants wanted to know: how can bridging the gap between tech and society reduce planet-warming emissions? Working alongside innovators and cross-sector experts, top voices within the field agreed:

We need a carbon tax

We commit to supporting and putting into action solutions ensuring that, via taxation, the cost of all products and services, for individuals and all types of organizations, reflect their true environmental cost.

Track 3: Reimagining society

Finally, our last track was tasked with unpacking a large-scale question: how can we move towards a greener world? While there’s no easy answer, one thing became clear

We need climate education

We commit to playing an active role in climate education from classroom to boardroom to ensure fundamental system changes and that everyone is aware of the climate change distress we are likely to experience.

Moving beyond sustainability is an ongoing commitment that requires collaboration across industries. Hosting such a diverse crowd of experts within our ecosystem was a highlight for all of us at Rockstart. Even more important, however, was the experience of different participants : 

“A massively important initiative which allows connections and alliances to be created across the ecosystem of the able and willing.” Investor, Denmark

“Thought-provoking discussions with a different spectrum of climate resilience professionals!” Investor, Denmark

“The event was very well organized and the group of participants was interesting/relevant to the ecosystem. The setting of the Island created a very cohesive atmosphere, making it easy/low-barrier to interact with each other.” Investor, Netherlands

Find out more by watching the event after movie:

Forward 2022 allowed us to take the first steps down a new path, but the work continues. Keep an eye out for details on joining the conversation at next year’s Forward event and follow our Newsroom to learn how we commit to regenerative innovations year-round.