Speaking at the Long Finance Initiative Spring Conference, “Into the Folly of Value”, Joss Tantram talked about radical new thinking on sustainability in economics.
Introducing Terrafiniti’s Towards 9 Billion approach, he talked about how altering the way we derive price would produce more sustainable outcomes by focusing on the three key value concepts of abundance, vitality and interdependence.
Chaired by Professor Michael Mainelli of Z/Yen and Gresham College and involving Mathew Kiernan, former founder of Innovest and now of Inflection Point Capital and Valéry Lucas-Leclin, Head of SRI at Bank of America Merrill Lynch, the panel discussion session focused upon the on the challenges and opportunities of sustainable investment.
Joss proposed a shared vision of 9 billion capable citizens as a compelling goal for business and investors, the successful delivery of which requires ecological sustainability to be placed at the heart of industrial processes and investment. He also articulated some of the reasons why economics and investors currently struggle with the difference between economic price and sustainable value.
As a way of bridging this divide, Joss suggested the need to “hack the price function” by placing three concepts at the heart of the price equation to produce innately sustainable outcomes.
- Value abundance rather than scarcity – scarce things are only of marginal utility in a world of 9 billion capable citizens – either natural or managed abundance is inherently more valuable in this context.
- Cultivate natural vitality – use the planet’s natural restorative and productive abilities and learn from and utilise natural production techniques as the basis for our technological and industrial models.
- Value interdependence – nothing happens in our modern world without the actions of others. We need to recognise and balance this interdependence so that our quality of life is not bought at the cost of someone else’s.
See Joss speak in the video below (from 3:45), together with the panel’s wider discussion on whether we should be pessimists or optimists and whether regulation or private innovation should be the driver for a sustainable economy.