Day 5 Summary: Business Fights Poverty NYC Online 2020

By Daniel Alves, Researcher, Business Fights Poverty

Today at Business Fights Poverty NYC Online 2020 we discussed how to shape system-level partnerships. 

Today at Business Fights Poverty NYC Online 2020 we discussed how to shape system-level partnerships.

A fireside chat between Yvette Torres-Rahman, our Co-Founder, and Ester Baiget, CEO of Novozymes , gave insights into the value of systemic approaches to her company’s sustainability strategy, day-to-day operations, and multi-stakeholder initiatives. Ester also talked about the connections between sustainable business models and investing in cross-sector partnerships for building a more resilient and inclusive future. Ester remarked “What I am looking forward to when we reach the new normal is that it is also a new norm… A new norm where we have a strong appreciation of what is fragile and what is non-negotiable; a new norm where we are all getting stronger together. We see the value of sustainability, the value of protecting our health and the health of our planet.”

Our first panel discussion examined the challenges and opportunities around establishing successful business donor partnerships for system-level impact. New multi-stakeholder partnerships are being created to tackle deeper systemic issues, and are therefore key to rebuilding better. Mita Samani highlighted that “often we try to seek results really quickly. I think in each of our organisations there is an element of having to demonstrate impact really quickly. But these partnerships are difficult, they are complex, multi-faceted system-wide issues, and we really need to be prepared to be in it for the long haul”.

The following panel, hosted with Nestlé, focused on system-level partnerships to strengthen food systems. The pandemic has had a dramatic impact on the global food system, from international logistics and price disruptions on business and consumers, to the impact on the livelihoods of workers and small scale farmers. The most vulnerable have been disproportionately affected. Tim Hunter shared that potentially an 80% increase in the number of people facing chronic food insecurities has been forecasted. Anita Neville brought to light that it is essential to recognise “the incredibly important role that farmers play in keeping us all fed and keeping important assets, like soil, forests and water healthy for our collective good”.

If you were unable to join us for these important and insightful sessions, you can access all of the recordings and summaries with a Digital Pass . In the meantime, you can also watch all the opening sessions and musical performances via the links on the event page .


Visit the learning section of our event page for more amazing content, including a series of “how-to” videos created by our community. Today, we launched two new how-to videos:


We would like to extend our thanks to the more than 70 speakers who shared their insights across 16 sessions and 11 “How-To” videos, and to all of our participants who engaged enthusiastically across the week. As Zahid, our CEO, said at the end of the last session, “I am optimistic about the road ahead; with the collective energy, commitment and insight of this community, I know we have the foundations needed to rebuild better”.

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