Building our future of abundance | Bernard Lebelle | TEDxMcGill


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In his talk, Bernard Lebelle provides a blueprint on how to use social experiments to scale solutions and tackle the UN Sustainable Development Goals. Sense-maker, futurist & strategist, Bernard strives to create a momentum to build an inclusive Future of Abundance through Digital Transformation & Exponential Technologies. An Innovation consultant & serial entrepreneur with over 25 years of international experience, Bernard has lived in 7 different countries.

He chairs the Human Impact Lab, an NGO focused on creating a Future of Abundance by funding financially viable local projects to tackle climate change challenges by scaling existing technologies with the buy-in of citizens and the approval of local governments. Bernard is an accomplished author and has been a guest-lecturer at Sciences-Politique in France and Ivey Business School in Canada. This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at <br> <h3>Auto Generated Captions</h3>

I’m fortunate to be married to an
extraordinary woman and we have four
sons as parents Lena and I try our very
best to prepare our kids for the
uncertain times ahead
I know even if technological
breakthrough happens on a weekly basis
our world is still currently a very
scary place for all generations
especially young people if you take max
our oldest son is having a hard time
choosing his post-secondary studies as
university struggled to adapt their
curriculum to the ever-changing
landscape of Technology and Felix our
second son experienced his weekly mood
swings generated by dystopian headlines
on one hand and tangible proof that
solution exists on another so this is a
very scary and unstable place indeed and
that’s the reason why you know I insist
on having family lunches this give us
the space to share insights and
questions with our kids so there we were
back in April
enjoying your homemade three-course meal
when Oscar suddenly our third son starts
talking about a repo here just read on
the twenty thirty imminent climate
change tipping point that would put our
planet on the path of irreversible
destruction Alex on our force on our
youngest eleven looks at this brother
and say twenty thirty do you mean that
when I’ll be 21 I won’t have a future
anymore you know absurd Oscar we won’t
be able to stop anything it can only go
downhill from here so Alex on
immediately turns up to Lena and I and
challenges us so why are you being up to
these last few years
why aren’t you even trying to fix my
future Wow I don’t know if you’ve
noticed but we’re live in a world of
science fiction that was invented 25
years ago most of us and rounds us today
has been dripped about in books movies
and TV shows new technologies are
created every week solutions exist
well they’re in big report in the news
and we don’t see many of them
implemented globally they all set so
that was one of those life-changing
moments where you know you need to step
in you know need teeth to kiss they take
stan and become a change engines so Lila
my wife to all them remember that we are
living in an economy of attention and
that fear sells if you listen to the
gloomy headlines chances are you’ll keep
on feeling scared and defeated you need
to embrace optimism because we’ve tried
pessimism and it doesn’t lead anywhere
and I added if you stick to pessimism
you maintain this self-fulfilling
prophecy that’s already too late I
choose to be optimistic because we’re II
have technological solutions to tackle
climate change challenges but we may
need a different kind of approach we
need to reverse engineer success and so
it started with a condition that we
could change things if we approach it
differently my contention today is that
we still have time to change the course
of humanity and create a future of
abundance all we need is the scale
existing solution leveraging the power
of social experiments and local rollouts
but first kids yes I agree the world
does look like a really scary place and
anyone could think where the crossroad
of for dystopian stories
yes max you’re right it may seem that
we’re living in black mirror as social
score and facial recognition systems are
rolled out one way or another in
multiple countries yes Felix amazing
were already living in 1984 under the
dictatorship of political correctness
and the censorship of honest
intellectual debates and of course Oscar
it may seem that I were living in
Gattaca as scientists are now able to
engineer HIV resistant babies by design
and Alex on yes it does seem that we are
living in far not 451 as the devious
impact of social network is such that
today young people would rather try to
become influences than finish their
college degree but truth be told
solutions exist everywhere and new ones
are found on a weekly basis across the
planets just to name a few
in Canada a startup called carbon
engineering has the technology to
extract co2 out of the atmosphere for
less than $100 per ton and do you
remember that scale up in France called
earthquake that has the technology
trenches from plastic back into fossil
fuel now did you know that today in
England we are now using more renewable
energies than fossil fuel for the first
time ever since the start of the
Industrial Revolution and what about
India which has recently proven that we
can go to the moon for less than the
cost of a science fiction movie
think about Chandra Yanis second mission
budget was 142 million u.s. dollars and
Hollywood’s interstellar movie budget
165 million US dollars so today we’ve
got this incredible opportunity to
leverage exponential technologies to get
things done at a large scale and an
increasing low costs today we’ve got the
ability to make a difference if we’re
willing to push the envelope now I
believe the safest path to our future of
abundance requires a holistic approach
engaging all stakeholders it is up to us
as citizen and economic actors to stand
up and say we want to do something it is
up to academic and startups to propose
cutting-edge technologies are waiting to
be scaled it is up to cooperation to
create new business models that will
make those local projects financially
sustainable by design and together we
will convince governments to change the
status quo change the rule of the game
and allow mass scale experiments if the
voice of the people the voice of
academics and the voice of business come
together we can change the world so once
I pitch this to my son their first
reaction was the air current yeah that
cool idea really no we like it a lot to
actually do how do you get any real
projects actually launched well one
proven way to feel secure success is by
leveraging the power of social
experiments never heard of school 42 no
let me tell you first about that a young
Daria is a Russian immigrant and a
mother of three she started as a 21 year
old college dropout before moving to the
zalien Yale is a self-made French
billionaire he made his fortune in the
pre-internet era of online adult
chatroom services and he went on to
disrupt the entire telecom industry in
France with innovative offerings like $5
unlimited mobile phone plates Daria
attended school 42 and our model three
Russian immigrants matt has top computer
engineering job at Apple now their
impact on Russian college dropout right
well that is the power of social
experiments and I’ve analyzed with
school forty-two success and I found out
it relies on three simple ingredients a
proven recipe for a better brighter
future of abundance that’s all it takes
three simple ingredients uncommon
partnerships unconventional hypotheses
and expected tensions let’s start with
uncommon partnerships you need a
different kind of crew not the usual
suspect you need to enroll people from
different horizons now did you know that
school 42 welcomes anyone regardless of
their school of background and you also
need to think about uncommon
partnerships between concept to navigate
uncertain environments this will
generate radical innovative ideas and
powerful results so at school 42 also
been starts by one intense month in la
piscine that’s French for swinging for
four weeks of coding Monday to Sunday
day and nights but guess what
there are no teachers there are no
classes there are no courses and there
are no books so how does it work it’s
based on peer to peer education students
teach each other we have diversity by
design student get exposed to uncommon
thinking and perspective from
unconventional teammates the diversity
of opinion and knowledge allows
reframing of explanation and concept in
multiple ways
and what’s even more funky is that
school for you to also apply
gamification techniques to keep track of
students progress
Experion points are awarded for
completing projects solo quest or team
quests and uncommon partnerships within
an education system a video game
philosophy and motivational theory now
let’s look at the second ingredient
unconventional hypothesis it’s about
challenging what makes the very
foundation of a given system school for
teachers first unconventional hypothesis
is creating an academic institution
without any prerequisites so it doesn’t
matter if you have a computer science
degree or no it is really open to
everyone now the fascinating second
unconventional hypothesis is peer
correcting you’re not graded by teachers
your first get graded but when your
fellow classmate based on the elegance
and efficiency of your code and then you
get graded by lab Molinet let’s
transform in sir a thorough and
unforgivable automated grading system a
single mistakes and you won’t be scoring
any experience points the rest of your
now either these are two highly
unconventional hypothesis with
tremendously successful months now your
last ingredients is unexpected tensions
so remember this in an uncertain
environment no perfect plan ever
survives first encounter with reality
you need to be ready to pivot as you go
along with your experiments that’s proof
for you to there is no fixed curriculum
is a being L chose to adapt for valuable
changes all the time as computer science
techniques evolve every day fix per
coulomb would be updated in less than 18
so instead schools 42 education team
scans for latest breakthroughs and eight
erased on test cases accordingly and
remember this in an uncertain
environment the cost of planning is
always higher than cos experimentation
unexpected tangents help navigate
volatile uncertain uncertain complex and
ambiguous environment results help shape
larger experiments and long master
democratization with greater benefits so
social experiment gives us the power to
shape an abundant feature no we need our
uncommon partnerships unconventional
hypotheses and an expected tangents
so trust me sons we still have time to
change the course of humanity and build
our future of the mummies
all we need is to look at the global
climate change challenges and see how
they translate at local level all we
need is to scale existing solutions
using social experiments all we need is
to find clever ways to create new local
companies to roll them out still fuzzy
let’s make it super country
let’s take the united nation second
sustainable development goal zero hunger
its objective is to provide access to
safe nutritious and sufficient food all
year round with no climate change in
fact so if you’re trying to do this for
everyone at the same time around the
world it looks impossible well I know
it’s startup in montreal called saloon
which has developed a LED technology
that is able to replicate the quality of
the sun’s ray from anywhere around the
planets so if bold entrepreneurs use
saloons LED technology in repurposed
coal mines in snowy Saskatchewan with
local governments blessing now think
about it we could experiment harvesting
organic tasty nutritious tomatoes and
zucchinis as if they are grown under the
sunny Italian tuscan sky today we’ve got
the ability to make a difference if
we’re willing to push the envelope so
now I’ve shared our family story the
first question you should be asking
yourself is do you want to bury your
head in sand or you want to rise and
become a change engines and that’s how
we started as parent and as a family
were the intent to create a movement to
help change the course of humanity now
if you want to join and help us change
the course of humanity the most
important question you should be asking
yourself is which solution will we push
our companies our schools and our
governments to implement in order to
create our future of abundance thank you

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