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CLIMATE CAN’T WAIT

This highlights report is going to be rather long, just like the past two years were. Many of you have asked us many times what we were doing and all we ever hurriedly replied was: TEDxDanubia Countdown, because the climate cannot wait. We, in fact, had to wait nearly two years to meet you in person, but the work before and after the conference never stopped and it will keep us busy in the future, too.

Plant a tree!

It's a popular sustainability idea that the best time to plant a tree in people’s lifetime was the moment of their birth, but the second best time is today. We would like to facilitate this with the help of Tree of Life Permaculture. Our plan is to plant nearly 2,000 trees as part of their habitat restoration project in the 2nd district of Budapest. This way, we could keep going back afterwards to see how the saplings are growing. All you have to do is come along; we'll provide the tools, the saplings and the skilled hands. You will help, won't you? All you need to do is write to us at ultetnekegyfat@tedxdanubiacountdown.hu.

Beyond Zero movie screening

To make real change, businesses must leave behind the legacy of Milton Friedman, who argued that companies have no responsibility other than to make a profit and must only focus on the interests of their shareholders. Fortunately, some people started thinking otherwise decades ago already. One of these pioneers, Ray Anderson and the story of Interface, the floor tile company he founded, has also been the subject of a film. How did a global billion dollar company in a hardly-green industry reduce its carbon footprint to zero? As we would like to keep the topics in the focus of the conference very much alive even after our highlight event at Vígszínház, we have organized a Hungarian screening of the film with the help of Erste Bank, where we will discuss the purpose of business, corporate responsibility and opportunities with the filmmakers and experienced entrepreneurs committed to sustainability. Entry shall be free to both the screening and the discussion and open to the public, thanks to Erste Bank, and, of course, you are welcome, too. If you would like to come and join us there, please contact us: beyondzero@tedxdanubiacountdown.hu

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WHAT HAS HAPPENED SO FAR?

The activation program envisioned by TEDxDanubia and MVM called ‘Action Circles powered by MVM’ has been launched with the aim of providing a platform for those who want to take action. Individuals and groups who have applied can now share their steps and experiences with each other and participate as co-creators in the shaping of the spring conference. A completely unique climate education initiative for high school students has also been successfully launched under the title ‘Future design program powered by MVM.’ In the framework of the Sci-fi future planning program created with the professional support of MVM, Blue Planet Climate Protection Foundation and the Hungarian Food Bank Association, youngsters and their mentors can work together on problems that threaten to critically impact our future.

Speakers

Neil Devani
Venture investor
Neil Devani
Venture investor

Neil is the founder and managing partner of Necessary Ventures, an early-stage VC investing in what the world needs. He primarily focuses on companies using deep technologies and those increasing access to health, education, and opportunity. Since 2014, Neil has invested in 50+ companies, of which 8 have grown to $1B+ valuations and 5 have publicly exited.

Neil is also the host of
The Operators a podcast highlighting people building and scaling impactful organizations, and an advisor to Upsolve, a bankruptcy nonprofit that has helped eliminate hundreds of millions of dollars of medical debt.

He completed his J.D. at Stanford Law School after working on the Affordable Care Act in the US Senate. Full Bio
Frankó Csuba Dea
Stefan Frankenberger
musician, producer and artist
Stefan Frankenberger
musician, producer and artist

Stefan is a Vienna-based musician, producer and artist. Aside his creative activities, he presides a
network of artists called Society 77, which performs at events such as the Peace Tram or Session77.

He is also the designer of the superfast train network map called Metropa, where the big cities of Europe like London, Frankfurt or Budapest are depicted as metro stations in order to give people a palpable imagery of what Europe could be in the future.

After a year of continuous publications and mentioning on social media platforms, Metropa now enters a new stage of public presence by keynotes and lectures in conferences, schools and panels. Full Bio
Nagy Réka 'Ökoanyu'
Sipos Katalin

Program

IT'S TIME.

It is a special moment in time. We never thought such a dramatic shift in our everyday lives could be a reality. But it can. It is. So we struggle. We adapt. But as survival mode gives way to a new beginning, we must be mindful: although selfsustainment and short-term thinking will understandably become priorities and automatisms gravitate us back towards more of the same, we have a unique opportunity. We have shared a global, yet deeply personal experience of uncertainty and seen our limitations. We have an increased sensitivity to how such things may in fact happen to us. We have faced the potential of major moral dilemmas. And we have experienced the disruption of our customary routines and behaviour patterns. So are we more open to rethinking how we relate to the world? Can we redesign for our future needs? Can we grasp this opportunity to break out of the limiting – even destructive – nature of the "short term perspective"? Despite the systemic pressures of the short term, the charting of our new course should consider not only quarterly results, but also the arc of our journey as individuals, as communities and as a civilization.

  • 9:00 - 9:40 Arrival, registration

    9:40-11:15 | 1. Session | FACING OUR FUTURE

    More than ever, the world of tomorrow depends on what we do today. What kind of society and what world we will live in hinges on how quickly and effectively we act today. Where do we find humane and regenerative solutions to our key challenges that are not based solely on science, but which also consider the diversity of our cultures, customs and problems, while enhancing the security of the biosphere we live in? As someone wise said, "If you want something you've never had, you must be willing to do something you've never done." But are we capable of such comprehensive and rapid change? What kind of things and habits will we be able to leave behind? How do we prioritize our actions? What options do we have at all, what solutions are already being implemented and how might they be adapted to our situation and needs? We believe it is better to face our future today than to wait for a miracle.

    Prof. Dr. Merkely Béla
    Rector of Semmelweis University
    Juhász Anna
    Literateuse, independent creator promoting literature and reading, cultural manager
    Varró László
    Vice President Global Business Environment, Shell International B.V.
    Hivekovics Ákos
    agricultural engineer in environmental management
    'Follow the violin' & FMAN
    Live act duo
    Bazsó Gábor 'Karotta'
    journalist, TV show host
  • 11:15 - 12:00 Coffee break

    12:00-13:30 | 2. Session | BEYOND GROWTH

    Growth, like speed and performance, as a word and as our "best friend", has incredible, almost magical power. So much so, that we often subordinate everything else to it. But what is really behind the process of growth as we know it? What happens when instead of growth we choose sustainability? Or when performance cedes its place on the priority list to health and well-being? What if we see the things we do not use anymore as a reusable resource instead of disposable waste? Or if education is no longer a resolvable burden, but a storehouse of incredible possibility? And what if we exchange the zero-sum game, producing an endless series of winners and losers, with an older form of cooperation.

    Harald Katzmair
    philosopher, network scientist, thought leader
    Neil Devani
    Venture investor
    Johannes Weber
    Founder, Ananda Impact Venture
    Sódar Gabriella
    sustainability venture capital investment developer
    Kovács Zoltán
    investor, organizational coach
    F. Liska Tibor
    computer scientist, economist, university lecturer
    Frankó Csuba Dea
  • 13:30 -14:30 Lunch break

    14:30-16:00 | 3. Session| SYSTEMS RULE

    Despite our vast capacity to accomplish things, we seem to be pretty much stuck, when it comes to our major challenges, climate change being a prime example. Wherever we look, we see that our challenges have become systemic, interconnected in multitudes of ways, and our functional silos – efficient though they may be – cannot generate meaningful impact. In fact, it seems what we need now is not to produce more or become more efficient, rather we need to transcend systemic boundaries we seem unable to. What we are facing is not a collection of business, technological and social challenges, even if that is true, but one interconnected, systemic challenge. Yet, the systemic change we need is elusive. But why is that? What do we exactly mean by systemic? And what can we do about it?

    Dr. Kirsten Dunlop
    CEO, EIT Climate-KIC
    Dalmadi Júlia
    Food Futurist
    Baráth Barna
    Sustainability and education entrepreneur
    Méreg Attila
    globetrotter
    Libor Laura
    special prize winner of the XPLN video competition
    James Atkins
    entrepreneur
    Stefan Frankenberger
    musician, producer and artist
    Nagy Réka 'Ökoanyu'
    Sipos Katalin
    Puskás Kata Szidónia
    association president, communication specialis
  • 16:00 -17:00 Coffee break

    17:00-18:30 | 4. Session | MOMENTS MATTER

    You cannot solve the climate crisis alone, but we can't solve it without you either. Just as an ecologically sustainable economy cannot come about by itself, these things require all of us. Moreover, there is no single special thing we can all do to fix it all. The solution is not found in any action, but is brought about by individual, community and societal commitment. For that very reason, the right time to start is always right now. This is precisely why we wanted to provide space and opportunity to present some of the initiatives and visions that can inspire ideas in us, or which we might join. Because every moment, if we act together, our actions count and can truly bring change.

    Andreas Beckmann
    Regional CEO of WWF Central and Eastern Europe
    Wégner Krisztina
    expert of the Blue Planet Foundation
    Havasi Zoltán
    NGO founder
    Márkuly István
    permaculture designer
    Lucia Pietroiusti
    art and ecology curator
    Kemény Zsófi
    writer, slammer
    Anis Barnat
    social entrepreneur
    Laureline Simon
    climate change adaptation expert

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TED is a platform for ideas worth spreading.

Launched in 1984 as a conference where technology, entertainment and design converged, TED today shares ideas from a broad spectrum — from science to business to global issues — in more than 100 languages.

In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TED has created a program called TEDx. TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. Our event is called TEDxDanubia, where x = independently organized TED event and 'Danubia' symbolizes the cross-border and interdisciplinary communication and thinking that we aim to achieve. At our TEDxDanubia event, TEDTalks video and live speakers will combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events, including ours, are self-organized.

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