Last week I was invited to share our story at the Innovation and Investment Forum of the XiV World Forestry Congress (WFC2015) of how we took a biorefining process idea to the labs, then got it financed and commercialised it.
As we think that furfural is the sleeping beauty among all the bio-renewable chemicals, we thought that the french title was very appropriate for a story that was shared with the delegates of a forestry congress.
WFC 2015 was big! ±4000 delegates, incl. many ministers or deputies from across the globe. What struck me most: All the delegates had one common goal (the protection of the world’s forests) and all the presentations and plenary sessions I attended were constructive and informative.
The Objectives of WFC2105 were:
- help position forestry as an integral part of sustainable development at all levels – national, regional and global;
- identify and review major issues facing forests and forestry, and propose technical, scientific and policy interventions to promote forest sustainability;
- provide an open forum in which the world’s forestry community and partners from other, related sectors can share and debate their knowledge, views and latest findings and establish and consolidate partnerships and networks;
- showcase the latest developments and innovations in global forestry, using multimedia platforms to illustrate practical applications and linkages; and
- ensure that critical issues are tackled and that all key stakeholders, particularly youth, students, professionals, women and local communities, have a platform on which to voice the ideas and concerns of their constituencies.
The only “negative”: My event started about 30 minutes late (due to the late arrival of the main speaker) and then the high-level and various keynote speakers did not bother about their time allocation. The result was that all panelists were asked to reduce their talks to five minutes or less. Some did not even get to speak. Nevertheless, I think that most of the stories were told and heard. Mine can be picke-up here: dalinyebo.com/from-the-labs-to-the-markets (the-furfural-story)