The struggle for the soul of the B Corp movement

February 18, 2023

(Financial Times) When Nestlé subsidiary Nespresso was awarded “B Corp” status in May 2022, the founders of tiny Glen Lyon Coffee Roasters could scarcely believe it. Their initial reaction was “dismay”, the Scottish firm said in a post on its website last summer. It had only just attained the same certification, which demonstrates enhanced commitments…

one startup’s plan to help africa lure back its ai talent

February 17, 2023

(Wired) During a trip home to Johannesburg, South Africa, while completing an engineering master’s program in Japan, Pelonomi Moiloa attended the largest machine learning community gathering she’d ever seen in Africa, just a few miles from where she grew up. In all, 600 people from 22 nations attended 2017’s Deep Learning Indaba, held at the University of…

google case at supreme court risks upending the internet as we know it

February 16, 2023

(Bloomberg) An upcoming Supreme Court case could answer one of the toughest questions of the internet age: Should online companies be held responsible for promoting harmful speech?  The case, Gonzalez v. Google, could upend the modern internet economy, sparing no online business. A ruling against Google will likely leave internet companies — from social media platforms to…

dissecting the chamber’s stance on climate policies

February 16, 2023

(Politico) The U.S. Chamber of Commerce represents a diverse group of businesses, but its positions on climate policies mostly reflect the views of its fossil fuel members, the nonprofit group InfluenceMap finds in an analysis released Thursday. Read more here.

esg investing’s dark side threatens to undermine clean-tech strategies amid ravenous demand for metals: ‘we should be under no illusion’

February 12, 2023

(Fortune) The dark side of ESG investing has the potential to undermine a whole generation of clean-tech strategies. Adam Matthews, chief responsible investment officer at the Church of England Pensions Board, said the risks posed to the renewables boom via the mining industry aren’t getting nearly enough attention. The upshot, according to the 47-year-old, is that portfolios…

The Generative AI Race Has a Dirty Secret

February 10, 2023

(Wired) Integrating large language models into search engines could mean a fivefold increase in computing power and huge carbon emissions. In early February, first Google, then Microsoft, announced major overhauls to their search engines. Both tech giants have spent big on building or buying generative AI tools, which use large language models to understand and…

Nextracker raises $638 million in year’s largest IPO

February 9, 2023

(Axios) Why it matters: This is the largest U.S. IPO since Mobileye went public last October, and the largest solar energy IPO in more than two years. It also comes on the same week that three other companies are planning to raise at least $150 million in IPOs of their own, suggesting something of a…

Rescuing ESG from the Culture Wars

February 9, 2023

(HBR) In the past year, ESG investing has become caught up in America’s culture wars, as prominent GOP politicians claim that it is a mechanism investors are using to impose a “woke” ideology on companies. Former Vice President Mike Pence has railed against ESG in speeches and in an op-ed. A variety of Republican governors…

AI is the next frontier — but for whom?

February 8, 2023

(TechCrunch) A few weeks ago, a founder told me it took three hours of endless clicking to find an AI-generated portrait of a Black woman. It reminded me, in some ways, of a speech I saw three years ago when Yasmin Green, the then-director of research and development for Jigsaw, spoke about how human bias…

Americans’ Climate Migration Has Begun

February 2, 2023

(The American Prospect) The first generation of climate migrants tries to cling to the places they call home, but bureaucrats, wallets, and an overheating planet have the final say. After natural disasters that render areas or regions uninhabitable, Bittle argues, many people will seek out deeply resourced cities that can recover faster than rural areas.…