VEC announces Greater Vancouver Innovation Capital: A Collaboration with World-renowned Economic Theorist Jeremy Rifkin

Logo for VEC announces Greater Vancouver Innovation Capital: A Collaboration with World-renowned Economic Theorist Jeremy Rifkin

The year-long collaboration will engage industry, residents, experts and all levels of government to develop an integrated plan that positions Greater Vancouver as the leading smart green region in North America

Vancouver, B.C. (March 19, 2018) — The Vancouver Economic Commission (VEC) is pleased to announce the creation of the Greater Vancouver Innovation Capital (GVIC) and the beginning of a year-long collaboration with world-renowned economic theorist Jeremy Rifkin and his global team. Over the next year, GVIC will deliver a “Third Industrial Revolution Roadmap” and accompanying deployment plan to transition Greater Vancouver into a smarter, greener and connected region and economy. GVIC will be housed within VEC and supported by its team.

“Vancouver is already home to the greenest and most resilient economy in Canada, but we need to be thinking long term and taking it to the next level,” said Mayor Gregor Robertson. “This new partnership with Jeremy Rifkin and his team is good news for Vancouver as we look ahead to the Third Industrial Revolution and envision a smart, affordable, low-carbon, digital future for our city and region.”

On March 14, 2018, Vancouver City Councillors voted to contribute $500,000 from the City’s Innovation Fund towards funding the Third Industrial Revolution roadmap collaboration to add to $1.2 million pledged by private sector funders to support the plan’s development. GVIC will facilitate a close collaboration between Jeremy Rifkin’s global scientific and technical team and the region’s business community, universities, technical and research institutes and trade associations and non-profit organizations. GVIC’s objective is to unite all existing efforts in the Vancouver region, with the goal of accelerating the transformation of Greater Vancouver into an integrated smart, green, 21st Century region and thriving, sustainable economy within thirty years.

“Vancouver is already ranked as one of the leading green cities in the world,” says Jeremy Rifkin, an internationally recognised economic and social theorist, writer, public speaker, political advisor, and activist. “Our goal is to help position Vancouver as the premier green and smart city in North America with the hope that it will become a lighthouse for the transformation of Canada into a Third Industrial Revolution and an ecologically sustainable sharing economy in the 21st century.”

This regional roadmap will augment the City of Vancouver and Vancouver Economic Commission’s ongoing efforts to create a smart, resilient and renewable city and economy, tying together initiatives and plans like the Renewable City Strategy, Greenest City Action Plan and Zero Waste Vancouver.

“Vancouver has been leading the charge in smart policy and green economic development for years; as such, we begin this initiative from a position of great strength,” says Bryan Buggey, Director of the Vancouver Economic Commission. “Mr. Rifkin’s past success and experience with facilitating greater alignment between multiple levels of government in other regions is a great asset, and we look forward to collaborating with his team in building upon our past efforts with regional stakeholders to facilitate the cohesion necessary to create an innovative, creative and sustainable Greater Vancouver.”

Rifkin and his global team are principal advisors to the European Union’s Smart Europe Economic Development Plan and the People’s Republic of China’s Internet Plus Economic Development Plan.



About the Vancouver Economic Commission

The Vancouver Economic Commission (VEC) works to strengthen the city’s economic future by supporting existing businesses, attracting foreign investment and promoting international trade. The VEC strives to position Vancouver as a globally recognized city for innovative, creative and sustainable business. The Vancouver Economic Commission will be launching their “State of Vancouver’s Green Economy 2018” Report in Spring 2018. The preview is available now.
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Backgrounder: About Jeremy Rifkin

Jeremy Rifkin is an American economic and social theorist, writer, public speaker, political advisor, and activist. Rifkin is the author of 20 bestselling books about the impact of scientific and technological changes on the economy, the workforce, society, and the environment. The books have been translated into more than 35 languages. His most recent books include the international bestsellers, The Zero Marginal Cost Society (2014), The Third Industrial Revolution (2011), and The Empathic Civilization (2010).

Jeremy Rifkin has been an advisor to the leadership of the European Union since 2000. He has advised three presidents of the European Commission – Romano Prodi, Jose Manuel Barroso, and the current President, Jean-Claude Juncker – as well as the European Parliament and numerous EU heads of state, including Germany’s Angela Merkel, on the ushering in of a smart green Third Industrial Revolution economy. Mr. Rifkin is a principal architect of the European Union’s “Smart Europe” economic development plan.

Mr. Rifkin is the President of the TIR Consulting Group LLC, comprising of many of the leading renewable energy companies, electricity transmission companies, engineering companies, construction companies, architectural firms, ICT and electronics companies, transport and logistics companies, advanced manufacturing companies, and economic modelers. His global economic development team is working with cities, regions, and national governments to develop the Internet of Things (IoT) infrastructure for a Smart Third Industrial Revolution and a sustainable sharing economy. The TIR Consulting Group LLC is currently working with regions of Hauts-de-France, the Metropolitan Region of Rotterdam and The Hague, and the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg in the conceptualization, build out, and scale up of a smart Third Industrial Revolution infrastructure to transform their economies.

Mr. Rifkin’s New York Times bestselling book, The Third Industrial Revolution, provided the blueprint for the economic transition to a post-carbon ecological society across the European Union. According to The European Energy Review, “Perhaps no other author or thinker has had more influence on the EU’s ambitious climate and energy policy than the famous American ‘visionary’ Jeremy Rifkin.” In the words of Vice Chancellor and Economy Minister of Germany, Sigmar Gabriel, Jeremy Rifkin “is the economic and ecological worldwide ambassador of the energy transition… Rifkin presents a grand scenario for the future: a visionary approach unlike anyone has dared to put forward in the last fifty years that will boost our thinking and help with our orientation.”

Mr. Rifkin is also a principal advisor to China’s “Internet Plus” Third Industrial Revolution infrastructure to usher in a sustainable low-carbon economy. The Huffington Post reported from Beijing on October 29, 2015 that “Chinese Premier Li Keqiang has not only read Jeremy Rifkin’s book, The Third Industrial Revolution, and taken it to heart. He and his colleagues have also made it the core of the country’s thirteenth Five-Year Plan…” The Huffington Post goes on to say that “this blueprint for China’s future signals the most momentous shift in direction since the death of Mao and the advent of Deng Xiaoping’s reform and opening up in 1978.”

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