Why We Must Transform Our Markets

5 Traits of a Sustainable Market

You probably did not pay much attention to July 29, 2019 unless it was your birthday, wedding anniversary, or the start of a summer vacation. But July 29, 2019 was “Earth Overshoot Day” – the day occurring each year at which we used up our allowance of natural resources that the Earth is able to regenerate and replenish in a year.

That means from July 30 to December 31, 2019 we lived on borrowed time. We are consuming, degrading, and polluting the very resources – water, soil, air, to name a few – faster than they can recover and regenerate to help sustain our lives. At our current pace, we need 1.7 Earths to support our demand for natural resources.

This is the equivalent to living beyond your paycheck and needing to dip into your long-term savings account by the middle of summer because you are out of money. Just as you will run out of money, society will run out of the most basic resources it needs to function.

People may want to debate the fact of whom (or what) has caused our climate to significantly change over the last few decades. Transformative Markets is not about that. Others may want to blame government policy or the bad actions of big corporations for climate change, poverty, or resource depletion. Transformative Markets is not about that.

Transformative Markets is about finding a way to address the indisputable facts that we are living in a way that is unsustainable, and we are running out of time to fix it.

Transformative Markets: Scaling Impact

What I Enjoyed Most About Writing Transformative Markets

Global Conservation Corps (GCC) operates in an around Kruger National Park in South Africa. Its mission is to empower and educate youth population on best practices to preserve natural habitats and ecosystems. One of GCC’s signature initiatives is its Future Rangers Program where it works with four high schools to inspire and educate the next generation of conservationists, community leaders and decision-makers.

To turn the concepts of Transformative Markets into action, Ludke will donate the profits from the book to GCC to develop that a specialized learning track of GCC’s Future Rangers curriculum – “Ecosystem Entrepreneurs.”  

Co-created by Ludke, GCC, and local educators, Ecosystem Entrepreneurship is for students showing potential to develop business ventures near Kruger National Park that balance sustainable economic develop with ecosystem preservation. Students will be educated on how to build and operate a business that adds value to society, restores ecosystem health, and generates a profit.

This partnership is an outgrowth of a concept discussed in Chapter 8 of Transformative Markets whereby seemingly small ideas can quickly scale into something enduring and impactful for society because of active collaboration by a network of actors.

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“From the Moment you pick up this book, it will pull you in.  It’s a rare combination of a critical message and truly actionable information about markets that is written compellingly.  It’s a book that is full of great stories and data adding up to a clear and hopeful path forward.” - Elizabeth Sturcken, Environmental Defense Fund

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