Young Global Leaders Collaborate on World Energy Challenges

Princeton’s Andlinger Center for Energy and the Environment



Six teams recently participated in Princeton’s four-day executive education module designed for Young Global Leaders, an international group of individuals selected by the World Economic Forum for making meaningful change in their communities.

Participants included 30 executives, entrepreneurs, government officials, and scientists from 22 countries who showed interest in environmental issues and global energy. Through lectures, team exercises, panel discussions, and workshops, the program aimed to provide information to help participants make responsible and sustainable decisions for their organizations. It also addressed the behavioral and psychological aspects of the climate issue and why short-term or emotional judgments often override rational thought when making innovation and sustainability decisions.

In his welcome address, University President Christopher L. Eisgruber stressed the importance of engagement and partnership on a University-wide level, “We all benefit when university research translates across sectors. These kinds of partnerships drive economic progress and prosperity, and thereby help to create the conditions for democracy and freedom.”

Topics included how to power buildings and designing building and engineering solutions to keep occupants cool. Following lectures about these issues, groups engaged in a hands-on challenge to develop a low-cost solution to cool tents.

According to participant Anthony Smaré, chairman of Papua New Guinea’s superannuation investment fund, Nambawan Super, “When people are out of their comfort zone, quite literally, they learn the most. There was vulnerability in learning together outside in the heat of summer.”

Howard Cox, special limited partner of Greylock Partners and funder of the inaugural module, noted that collaboration was the event’s main goal. “When I look at where everyone has come from, we’ve truly assembled a world-class group in terms of background and accolades,” said Cox. “Collaboration in this room, among global leaders from NGOs, academia, and business, yields far-reaching impact. This is how we change the world.”

This was the first executive education program offered by Princeton, and the first time Princeton partnered with the World Economic Forum to educate the Young Global Leaders.

For additional information on the Young Global Leaders program, visit their Web site.

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