The future of humanity is under the spotlight in New York with the United Nations General Assembly kicking off this week. Though it draws the A list crowd plenty of other side events in New York are vying for the world’s attention – not least the Social Good Summit which has been growing in size and prestige each year.
The summit brings together world leaders, new media and technology experts, grassroots activists and voices from around the world. The ultimate aim to explore how new media and technology can be harnessed to create a better world by the year 2030. We caught up with Pete Cashmore, Founder and CEO, of Mashable which is also founder of the event. He explained some of the drive behind the gathering:
“The intent of the Social Good Summit which we founded about six years ago is really to say: How can we use technology for good in the world? And, how can we use this new tool of social media to all have a voice, to all make a difference in our communities? Because Mashable fundamentally is about empowerment, it’s about educating people about all the tools that are out there so that you can use them in your own life.”
The issues discussed here ricochet from those in focus at the UNGA but the atmosphere is all the more friendly, open and the guests refreshingly accessible. With the UN Climate Summit underway one big issue on the agenda is Climate Change. Greenpeace International Executive Director Kumi Naidoo was there (and it seems everywhere this week!) to drive his message home:
“It is within the power of our political business leaders, if they just think about their children and grandchildren’s future hopefully that will force them to put people before profit which is what they are doing now. We have to get off oil, coal and gas as fast as possible and move to clean renewable energy.”
There is a renewed sense of energy surrounding climate change and cautious yet palpable hope that global warming may at last be tackled a bit more effectively. One of the messages coming out of events like the Social Good Summit is that we do not have to wait for world leaders to act, thanks to technology we all have the power to not only inspire change – but make it happen.
Click below to hear some more voices from the Social Good Summit: