Today I had the honour and privilege of being part of the launch of Smart Prosperity with the Prime Minister of Canada, the Honourable Justin Trudeau.
Smart Prosperity is a very unique and exciting initiative that I have been a part of planning since 2014. It was officially launched today in advance of the 2016 GLOBE Series in Vancouver.
What exactly is Smart Prosperity? A vision for a clean, strong Canada.
Smart Prosperity is an initiative that will accelerate a clean, strong Canadian economy. It envisions Canada making more progress than any other nation on environmental, economic, and innovation performance. The initiative brings together diverse leaders from across Canada to put forward recommendations for policy that will create the ground work to build an economy that works for current and future generations.
What makes it different? Diversity, diversity, diversity.
When I joined this initiative the first thing that struck me was the diversity of the leaders who sat around the table - business, NGO, academic, labour, aboriginal and youth viewpoints are all represented. Smart Prosperity is about gathering diverse perspectives and unifying us as Canadians around a vision of a prosperous future. To my knowledge, this diversity is very unique in discussions about the future of our economy. As society, we tend to gravitate toward silos. In a world where populations are growing quickly, environmental constraints are felt more intensely, and economic stability is difficult to achieve, breaking out of silo-mentality and exploring creative solutions in incredibly important. That is what Smart Prosperity delivers.
What is my role? The youth voice.
I am so honoured to be representing the youth voice at the table for this important initiative. Youth are often missing from these types of high-level conversations but I can truly say that what we may lack in experience we make up for in energy and passion for our future. That is why I am so proud to be a part of Smart Prosperity; they have brought the youth voice to the table in a real way. Youth are future CEOs, researchers and policymakers. When we set 20 or 30 year visions we must recognize that it will be youth who will be tasked with tangibly delivering on those promises when the time comes. To me, intergenerational equity is the understanding and acknowledgement that decisions we make today have impacts for future generations and therefore their wellbeing must be taken into consideration.
What happens next? We're just getting started.
Smart Prosperity made 5 key recommendations in its initial report:
- Accelerate clean innovation across the economy
- Boost energy and resource efficiency
- Price pollution and waste
- Invest in advanced infrastructure and skills
- Conserve and value nature
With the initiative now launched, Smart Prosperity will publish reports on each of these recommendations and begin dialogue with diverse stakeholder groups about action opportunities. Please follow along at www.smartprosperity.ca or on Twitter.