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‘Steering a steady course for sustainability in uncertain times’ – SWM Annual Conference – 21/11/16


21 November 2016


09:00 – 14:00 including lunch


Conference Aston Meeting Suites

, Aston University, Aston Triangle, Birmingham, B4 7ET. The venue is within walking distance of Birmingham New Street Rail Station and easily accessed by bicycle. An electric vehicle charging point is available on site. Car parking can be booked here.


Sustainability West Midlands


Leaders and their advisers from the public, private and voluntary sectors. Senior level policy and decision makers willing to work together for a positive future for the West Midlands.

The event

With political uncertainty all around us, never has it been more important to maintain focus on the long term issues of sustainability and resilience for the West Midlands. This year’s conference looks at the significance for sustainability of the changing landscape at European, national and regional level and asks what our response should be. We’re delighted to welcome Ed Gillespie as our keynote speaker this year. Ed is a writer, communications specialist, serial entrepreneur and futurist. He is the author of ‘Only Planet – a flight-free adventure around the world’ a book about his circumnavigation of the globe without getting on a plane, which the Independent said “Allow[s] the world’s flaws and beauty to seep into your soul”. Ed is co-founder of Futerra, a change agency that specialises in business transformation and creative communications and campaigns. For the last fifteen years Futerra has become internationally renowned for it’s influential and award-winning work on some of the biggest corporate sustainability initiatives, from Unilever’s ‘Sustainable Living Plan’, through Mondelez’s ‘Coffee Made Happy’ to SAB Miller’s ‘Prosper’. Ed is also actively involved in a number of pioneering businesses and organisations as a Director or Investor, from Zero Carbon Food, a renewable energy powered, LED-lit, hydroponic farm in a disused underground tunnel in South London, to Loco2.com a pan European rail-ticket agency that makes it as easy to book a trans-continental train as a plane. He is also a Director of Greenpeace UK and a London Sustainable Development Commissioner, advising the Mayor and the Greater London Authority on green entrepreneurship and clean-tech. Following Ed’s keynote we will have an exciting session where the candidates for West Midlands Mayor set out their stalls on sustainability. Andy Street (Conservative), Beverley Nielsen (Liberal Democrat) and James Burn (Green Party) are confirmed to attend and share their aspirations for the region. You’ll also have the chance to take part in a facilitated Q&A session with the candidates. This is one not to miss!

Booking and further information

  • Free for our members or network members
  • £100 plus VAT for all others
Please note that non-attendance without prior written notification will result in a charge of £100 plus VAT.

Please register your interest in attending our Annual Conference using our online form. Your application will be reviewed and we will get back to you either offering you a place, or advising you that you are on our waiting list. For further information, please email enquiries@swm.org.uk or ring 0121 237 5890.


The agenda for the conference is available here.

Sponsorship Opportunities

Option one: Prime Sponsor Package (only 2 available) – £5,000 plus VAT Option two: Exhibitor Package (none now available, although if you’re interested we can put you onto a reserve list) – £500 plus VAT To see the full list of benefits, download our Annual Conference – Sponsorship Opportunities.

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Exhibitors include:

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