Green Supply Chains/Design Thinking Workshop | 2014

From 22 to 23 October 2014, the EMM Network for Sustainability successfully conducted a workshop on “Corporate Low Carbon Innovation Strategies and Practices for Green Supply Chains” at the Kempinski Hotel, Beijing as a back-to-back event with a Design Thinking Training at the China University of Communication (CUC) in Beijing. The two-day event brought together more than 50 CSR, sustainability and environmental managers from companies to generate ideas how to approach low-carbon innovation, using new innovative methods, such as Design Thinking.

Main Themes

Keynote speeches were delivered by Ms. Qi Yao, Project Manager, Strategic Planning Department, Beijing Enterprise Group Real-Estate Co., Ltd., Mr. Li Yan, Director of Energy Management, Digital China Information Service Company Ltd. and Mr. Li Rusong, China Director, Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP).

Mr. Philipp Kruschel, Executive Director of the EMM Network, introduced the EMM, its operations and scope, and reported about the outcomes of the EMM-EPF Global Summit 2014 which took place in September 2014 in Berlin. In a panel discussion, moderated by Mr. Rolf Dietmar, Director of the China Team of the EMM Network, the panelists Mr. Matthew Collins, Institute of Public & Environmental Affairs, Ms. Wang Fengzuo, Vice Secretary General, China Enterprise Confederation, Global Compact Office and Mr. Li Rusong, China Director, Carbon Disclosure Project, introduced their organizations and discussed the challenges and opportunities of low-carbon supply chain management. It was recognized that many companies already have implemented useful solutions that can be adopted by other companies. However, it was acknowledged that CSR, environmental and sustainability managers should be more involved in decision making processes to fully integrate these practices into companies’ operations.

The afternoon session featured a panel discussion moderated by Ms. Chen Ying, Vice General Manager, SynTao Consulting Co., Ltd., Mr. Li Yan, Director of Energy Management, Digital China Information Service Company and Mr. Zhang Jingwen, Project Manager, Tianjin Low-carbon Green Supply Co. Ltd. who were sharing ideas and experiences how to drive continuous innovation for low-carbon supply-chain management. Panelists introduced several innovative solutions on how to apply renewable energies in their companies’ practices. In the following Q&A the participants of the workshop were eager to discuss challenges within their companies.

In the final session, on 23 October 2014, the Design Thinking Training took place at the University of Communication (CUC) in Beijing. 30 participants received an overview of how to apply Design Thinking to address challenges of innovation for sustainability in companies, explored how employees of companies could be motivated to act sustainably in their everyday working life and how to set-up and improve low-carbon supply-chains. Design Thinking is an innovative tool and is used by many multinational companies such as Daimler or Procter & Gamble for developing new business ideas and business models. The participants were divided into small groups and jointly identified challenges, developed innovative approaches using Design Thinking which they discussed in their group with guidance by the coaches. As a result of the training, the participants discovered many new unconventional ways how to tackle these issues and presented them to the group in the EMM spirit of knowledge sharing and peer-to-peer learning.

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