As my colleague, Zahid, discusses in his recent article, there is a clear and deepening frustration amongst some with the rhetoric of “purpose”. For those of us who believe in the power of business to do good, this is an opportunity for some honest self-reflection. The key is “authenticity”; the recognition we need to move beyond the rhetoric of purpose and embed it meaningfully and consistently across business.
On Thursday 11 July, Business Fights Poverty Oxford 2019 (#BFPOXF19), our annual flagship event at Said Business School, University of Oxford, will create a space for an honest, constructive and practical discussion about business and purpose – looking at how this is being done, recognising where progress is being made and where actions are falling short.
You can apply to join an invited 300 group of professionals and practitioners working to embed purpose authentically within business. Engage with peers from leading global companies, civil society and government who are pioneering new ways to harness companies’ products, services, value chains, and voice to have a positive social impact.
This one-day experience will combine inspiring plenaries on how companies are driving action and taking stands on society issues, and with practical deep-dive knowledge zones focused on: partnerships, women’s economic empowerment, corporate social innovation, responsible supply chains, and purpose.
At Business Fights Poverty we believe in the power of purposeful collaboration. Our aim is to go beyond the standard conference attendee experience and drive a year-round process of collaboration. Through interactive workshops, curated discussions, delegate-led sessions and spaces carefully crafted to amplify collaboration, we maximise the positive interactions and connections people can make during the event.
To apply for a place, visit the event page here. We will be working hard with a range of event partners, such as Oxfam, WWF, The League of Intrapreneurs and The Partnering Initiative, to create a truly memorable event. Last year, 88% of participants surveyed said they made a valuable new connection for their work; 95% said they learnt something valuable for a current or future collaboration; and 98% said they would recommend the event to a colleague. We’ll be trying to raise our game again this year!
In addition to applying for a place, this year you can:
Apply to be a featured speaker: We’re looking for great speakers! If you or your organisation would like to be a featured speaker at Business Fights Poverty Oxford 2019, contact Katie Hyson with:
- a 200-word summary of the topic and its fit with the conference theme of embedding purpose authentically into business. This should outline the pressing social issue, why business and their partners need to collaborate in order to create systemic change (this could cover new solutions or be a call for action raising awareness of the issue); and how the topic could be brought to life, going beyond a standard speaker presentation; and
- a three-sentence speaker bio.
Become a Business Fights Poverty Ambassador: We are inviting a selected number of people to become Business Fights Poverty Ambassadors to help drive meaningful connection and collaboration at the event and beyond. Get a free place at the event and take on an active role that will help build your own connections and make the day deeply valuable for everyone. To find out more and to apply, please contact Anna Johnson with:
- a 200-word summary of explaining why you are interested in the conference theme of embedding purpose authentically into business; and
- a three-sentence bio.
Business Fights Poverty (#BFPOXF19) will be a chance for us to reflect, connect and drive forward real change.