Empower cleantech innovation, development and scale up by democratizing the fundraising process.
Cleantech companies have notoriously long and capital intensive development and commercialization cycles. The price of oil is at a 7-year low. Government funding is largely targeted at basic science and research. Venture capital has retreated from this space. Corporate strategic funding is lacking. These translate into a widening valley of death for cleantech. Yet, a technology-led transformation is required to address climate change challenges.
What's the solution? Democratize fundraising in cleantech.
The majority of the public is supportive of cleantech, but their voice is muffled by the political and institutional investment processes. By giving individuals the ability to fund and connect directly with cleantech companies via crowdfunding, we create an opportunity to give more cleantech companies a chance to succeed. Instead of waiting for governments and billionaires to come to our rescue, we can put the power in the hands of the average person. Based on the idea of Emergence Theory, the crowd just might get it right.
At the same time, this would be a way to maintain a more sustained level of public interest in technology as a solution to climate change.
What actions do you propose?
MIT alumni would be essential and powerful players to this platform and its development
1. Start a conversation: could crowdfunding be a successful mechanism for enabling climate change-related technologies? If so, how?
2. Identify key ingredients and define the model for increasing the chances of success of such a platform and community
3. Develop and design prototype platform
4. Connect people and organizations within and beyond the MIT network to build and launch the platform