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A post-carbon Europe: towards a third industrial revolution
InterviEUw with Jeremy Rifkin, president of the Foundation on Economic Trends, on A post-carbon Europe: towards a third industrial revolution

InterviEUw with Jeremy Rifkin at

Highlights 2012

Highlights of 2012

Second Session of the Assembly of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA)
Abu Dhabi, Abu Dhabi; 15 January, 2012
During IRENA’s Second Global Conference, Mr. Rifkin participated in a roundtable debate where he described the forthcoming Third Industrial Revolution— the convergence of internet communication technologies with distributed renewable energies. The conference debate heard the views of Ministers of Energy, government officials, representatives of international energy organizations, and lending institutions. Speakers discussed the need to consider local economies when developing new business models; the importance of regulatory and legal frameworks to encourage stability and investor confidence; the need to bring costs down; the importance of facilitating lending to SMEs in developing countries; and the need for IRENA to facilitate the sharing of knowledge experiences and best practices. Above all, the participants stressed the need for action and said Business Council discussions should not be allowed to become another “talking shop.”

The Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI)
New Delhi, India; 17 January, 2012
The Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) joined Mr. Rifkin to introduce a game changing Third Industrial Revolution business model for the world’s largest democracy. The collaborative business plan was prepared jointly by the Young Leaders of FICCI and The Office of Jeremy Rifkin. The plan, entitled “Mega Trends of the Emerging Third Industrial Revolution in India,” is designed to reposition the Indian business community as a global leader in the shift to a post-carbon sustainable economic era.

Pirelli Tires: Sustainability Day
Spinea, Italy, 23 January, 2012
Mr. Rifkin focused his keynote address at Pirelli’s Sustainability Day on the future of business in the Third Industrial Revolution. Mr. Rifkin discussed the new role of the “prosumer” in the emerging era of distributed capitalism.

The Fifth Student-Organized German Conference at Harvard
Cambridge, MA; 18 February, 2012
Mr. Rifkin joined the German Defense Minister, the German Finance Minister, and possible Chancellor Candidate Peer Steinbrüce during his visit to Harvard for this event. Mr. Rifkin’s keynote address focused on Germany’s key role in leading the European Union and the global economy in the transition to a Third Industrial Revolution society.

VCU Office of Sustainability: Sustainable Academic Lecture Series
Richmond, VA; 23 February, 2012
The room was completely packed, people were lined up along the sides and grey haired men in suits joined students sitting on the floor. Mr. Rifkin delivered the inaugural lecture in a new Sustainable Academics lecture series on February 23rd, which was developed by the VCU Office of Sustainability and co-sponsored by VCU Life Sciences, the College of Humanities and Sciences and the VCU schools of Business and Allied Health Professions. Rifkin’s address sparked a lively debate in the Aula of Freiburg University involving laureates such as Ernst Ulrich von Weiszäcker, co-chair of the international Resource Panel of UNEP and Helen Caldicott, laureate of the Nuclear-Free future award.

European Environment Laureates
Freiburg, Germany; 8 March, 2012
Mr. Rifkin presented the opening keynote address during the 1st International Convention of Environmental Laureates from March 8th – 11th, 2012 in Freiburg, Germany. This event took place midway between the Durban and Rio +20 climate and sustainable development conferences, a crucial time for the global environmental movement. Under the motto “On the way to Rio +20”, the convention pushed for the development and adoption of “The Declaration on Rio +20 by International Environmental Laureates.” The goal is to send a positive signal for achieving ambitious climate and sustainability goals and necessary innovations.

Frederick Community College
Fredrick, Maryland; 18 April, 2012
Mr. Rifkin was the honored guest lecturer at Frederick Community College in Maryland, where he spoke to an engaged student body about the end of the Second Industrial Revolution and how to properly prepare for and usher in the emerging Third Industrial Revolution.

Ceres Conference 2012 – Creating a New Economic Paradigm
Boston, Maryland; 26 April, 2012
In April 2012, more than 500 business leaders, investors, environmentalists and policy-makers gathered at Ceres' annual conference in Boston, MA to accelerate the transition to a sustainable economy. During the two day conference, sustainability leaders from companies, investment firms and non-profit organizations presented lectures about the sustainability issues they are facing and how they are responding. Mr. Rifkin’s keynote address focused on our economic and environmental future and the emergence of the Third Industrial Revolution.

Cisco CIO Circle
Berlin, Germany; 2 May, 2012
During Mr. Rifkin’s keynote address at the CIO Circle, he explained the concept of lateral power and how the Third Industrial Revolution will allow millions of people to produce their own green energy on site and share it across energy internets that span entire continents.

The Global Green Growth Summit
Seoul, Korea; 10 May, 2012
Mr. Rifkin was invited by the President of South Korea, Lee Myung-bak, and The Global Green Growth Institute to deliver a keynote address alongside several other acclaimed economic and environmental policymakers and experts, including Kandeh Yumkella, Director-General of the United Nations Industrial Development Organization, Achim Steiner, Executive Director of United Nations Environment Programme, and Masayoshi Son, the President of Softbank, Japan. Mr. Rifkin discussed the concrete methods through which international cooperation can be strengthened to support countries that pursue green growth and green economy strategies.

EFMD Annual Conference
Cannes, France; 14 May, 2012
Mr. Rifkin provided the opening keynote address at the European Foundation for Management Development's (EFMD) Annual Conference (May 13-15) hosted by the SKEMA Business School in Sophia Antipolis, France. EFMD is an international membership organization, based in Brussels, Belgium, that hosts 750 member organizations from academia, business, public service and consultancy in 81 countries around the world. The conference, chaired by Santiago Iñiguez, Dean of IE Business School in Spain, was themed “Beyond Maturity: Innovating in Management Education.” The conference offered the audience the opportunity to discover innovative approaches to research management, strategy, public policy, executive education, and more.

Econoshock Convention by Econopolis
Brussels, Belgium; 15 May, 2012
Mr. Rifkin appeared as a keynote speaker at Econoshock, a convention organized in Lier, Belgium by Econopolis, a wealth management, strategy, and communications company. Mr. Rifkin spoke on the need to make a quick transition into a Third Industrial Revolution economy to address the triple threat of the global economic crisis, energy security, and climate change.

The 10th Edition of Night Sounds at European Lab for Festivals
Lyon, France; 20 May, 2012
Mr. Rifkin was invited to deliver a keynote address at the 10th Edition of the Night Sounds by CNR and Arty Farty. CNR, the leading producer of sustainable energy in France, partnered with the European Lab for the Festival, with the aim of placing reflection and innovation front and center.

Greening the Heartland
Indianapolis, Indiana; 17 May, 2012
Mr. Rifkin was invited to Indianapolis to speak at the 'Greening the Heartland' Conference. The three day program resulted in one of the largest assemblies of green-minded professionals ever held in Indiana. Mr. Rifkin was among the keynote speakers that headlined the ‘Greening the Heartland’ conference.

BSI GAMMA Foundation Conference
Venice, Italy; 1 June, 2012
Mr. Rifkin joined the BSI GAMMA Foundation as the keynote speaker for their 2012 conference in Venice, Italy. The conference focused on the dramatic growth in socially sustainable and responsible investing. The conference was designed to remove uncertainty and confusion associated with sustainable growth and to help participants better understand the role of finance in today’s world. Mr. Rifkin addressed key issues related to social investing, including its costs and benefits, the possibility of investing responsibly while still turning a profit, the opportunities and obstacles, and whether shareholders gain or lose when management pursues sustainable policies.

Canadian Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Association
Toronto, Canada; 5 June, 2012
Mr. Rifkin delivered the luncheon keynote address at the 19th World Hydrogen Energy Conference 2012. He spoke about the pivotal role hydrogen and fuel cells play as a storage medium for renewable energies in the Third Industrial Revolution infrastructure.

Deutsche Telekom: 5th Dresden Future Forum
Munich, Germany; 14 June, 2012
T-Systems Multimedia Solutions, a subsidiary of Deutsche Telekom, held the 5th Dresden Future Forum June 14, 2012. The platform focused on the social and economic impact of the digital age. Mr. Rifkin was one of the two high-profile speakers invited to address the forum. He opened with his vision of a post-nuclear and post-fossil fuel age.

The World Investment Conference
Nice, France; 21 June, 2012
Mr. Rifkin’s keynote address at the 10th World Investment Conference focused on Europe’s leadership role in paving the way to a new economic paradigm.

European Smart City Event 2012
Amsterdam; 27 June, 2012
Mr. Rifkin was the keynote speaker at the European Smart City Conference held in Amsterdam. He explained the critical role that European cities will play in establishing the 5-Pillar nodal infrastructure of the Third Industrial Revolution.

Jeremy Rifkin is president of the Foundation on Economic Trends, a non-profit organization whose mission is to examine emerging trends in science and technology, and their impacts on the environment, the economy, culture, and society.

Jeremy Rifkin at

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