Empowering Cross-Cultural Collaboration for Sustainable Development: Insights from the WaveMakers Summit

The WaveMakers Summit, brought together entrepreneurs, activists, and community leaders from Denmark and Ukraine, with the aim to inspire and empower participants to create sustainable change.

The WaveMakers Summit, brought together entrepreneurs, activists, and community leaders from Denmark and Ukraine, with the aim to inspire and empower participants to create sustainable change. 

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Held in Copenhagen, this event highlighted the importance of cross-cultural collaboration in addressing global challenges, particularly in areas such as green business and youth empowerment. The WaveMakers Summit provided a platform for people to share their dreams, experiences, and insights while exploring ways for collaboration between Denmark and Ukraine.

The summit kicked off with a welcome and introduction from moderators Johann Svane and Marharyta Varadovska, warming up attendees for a series of discussions and presentations. The opening session, "The Vision Maker: It all starts with a dream," featured Steffen Tange, Senior Organizational Psychologist at Implement Consulting Group, who emphasized the importance of dreaming and navigating those dreams. Tange shared his own experiences and encouraged discussion on the journey from dream to reality. "Every adventure starts with a dream," he reminded the audience.

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Benjamin Bøgen Pedersen, a member of the National Youth Climate Council, addressed the WaveMakers Summit, emphasizing the urgency of climate action. He highlighted the severity of the environmental crisis, stating, "Human influence has worn the atmosphere, the ocean, and land, and essentially, we're in this poly crisis." Pedersen warned. Highlighting the role of entrepreneurship in mitigating the climate crisis he called for urgent action and system change.

 

Nima Tisdall, CEO of Nordic Makers and co-founder of Blue Lobster, shared her journey as an impact entrepreneur. She described how they created an app to connect fishermen directly with consumers, aiming to promote sustainable fishing practices. Despite initial success, they faced challenges with declining fish stocks, leading to the closure of their marketplace. However, they repurposed their technology for fisheries reporting to aid in monitoring fish stocks. Tisdall emphasized "We're still fighting for more sustainable oceans, but there is urgency. We need to get started now." Through her story, Tisdall illustrated the challenges and importance of entrepreneurship in addressing environmental issues.

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The event featured panel discussions on youth environment and green entrepreneurship. Panelists stressed the importance of involving youth, with Charlie Houkjær Klausen, Head of Communication & Sustainability at Simple Agency Group A/S, stating, "Young people are the leaders of today." Nima Tisdall highlighted the need to empower young creators, saying, "We need to empower young creators, emphasizing their fresh perspectives and willingness to challenge the status quo." Tetiana Kobchenko, Project Manager at COWI, emphasized collaboration, stating, "No single entity can solve environmental challenges alone." They discussed practical steps for aspiring entrepreneurs, highlighting the urgency of addressing environmental challenges and the significant role of youth-led entrepreneurship in creating a more sustainable future.

In the final sessions, speakers discussed the significance of cross-cultural collaborations and community building in driving entrepreneurship and social impact. Fabian van Oevelen, Partnerships Lead at UNLEASH, stressed the importance of diversity of opinion and inclusion, stating, "Diverse teams bring a richness of perspectives and ideas that can lead to more innovative solutions." Julie Arnfred Bojesen, Director of the Ukrainian-Danish Youth House, highlighted the vital role of cross-cultural partnerships, saying, "When we come together across borders and cultures, we can accomplish so much more."

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These conclusions emphasized the importance of unity in addressing global challenges and creating positive changes. Additionally, the summit announced the opening of registration for new free educational programs for Ukrainian and Danish youth in Denmark, to be conducted throughout 2024. The project is organized by Danish Entrepreneurs in partnership with the Danish-Ukrainian Youth House and funded by Tuborgfondet.

 

 

 

Text: Iryna Bulai 

Photo: Nadiia Tarasevych

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