The 2012 3i Summit aims to boost Ottawa’s progress towards an environmentally sustainable future. We envision outcomes in three categories. To give a more concrete sense of what could emerge from the Summit, these categories are briefly described below.
1. Supporting Infrastructure
Systems, organizations and tools to better mobilize and deploy local financial resources, under-used talents and skills and innovative approaches to engagement.
Here are a few examples to illustrate the category:
• Taproot Foundation (http://www.taprootfoundation.org/) — A US organization that taps into pro-bono professional talent to deliver practical advice and solutions for specific challenges faced by not-for-profit organizations. Perhaps something like this could be tailored to sustainability organizations and initiatives in Ottawa.
• Ottawa Sustainability Fund (http://www.osfund.ca/) — The Fund solicits donors and supports projects to make the City of Ottawa more sustainable. It could play a substantially larger role in mobilizing and deploying financial resources.
• Climate Spark Social Venture Challenge (http://www.climatespark.ca/) – A Toronto initiative to bring expertise and resources to selected proposals for GHG reduction.
2. Environmental Sustainability Forums
Events and activities to continue to strengthen cross-sectoral relationships in Ottawa.
An idea that illustrates this category is “Accelerator” Dinners: quarterly dinners where 20 to 30 local business and organizational leaders from a rotating pool provide advice on and help mobilize resources for one or more presented projects. Another representative idea would be to substantially boost an existing networks, such as the National Capital Environmental Network.
3. Targeted Community-Impact Projects
Tangible initiatives that deliver and demonstrate the on-the-ground change that is possible.
There are hundreds of existing, developing and potential projects in Ottawa, coming from virtually all sectors and addressing different dimensions of sustainability (green energy, local food, ecological restoration, etc.). A small number of promising, high impact initiatives that engage the interest and commitment of participants will be developed or substantially boosted through collaborations fostered at the Summit.