Ecosystem "Education - Business - State" for a viable environment

Can a conscious, responsible, community-based and digital entrepreneurial culture change the world, save the economy of our regions and rehumanize our organizations? Here is a reflection presented within the framework of the first Fall Congress in Conscious Entrepreneurial Education, of which the École branchée is a partner.

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We have witnessed a fascinating period in human history over the past two centuries. Indeed, progress in all areas has led to a marked improvement in the quality of life of hundreds of millions of people around the world. We are living older and healthier. Since 2000, in the poorest areas of the planet, in Africa and Southeast Asia in particular, millions of young people now have access to school and to dreams that were once unhoped for.

By Rino Levesque

Entrepreneurship and digital technology, thanks to their synergy on condition of being the bearer of a conscious vision, make it now quite possible to imagine a world where, soon, we will move without oil (Langlois, P., 2008) [1] and where we will use exclusively clean and efficient energies [2] 

For the time being, however, we are facing major challenges, but fortunately they can be overcome. It is not too late. We have the knowledge, innovative technologies [3] and clearly sufficient financial means to initiate, now, a set of transformations favorable to the reestablishment of essential balances of all kinds (ecology, economy, society) to save the diversity of life on the planet, ours included. 


Scientists predicted, about 35 years ago and some anticipated it even earlier [4], that the average temperature on a terrestrial scale could increase from 1.5 ° C to 2 ° C by 2150. Then, from 1992 (Rio Summit), it was estimated that the resulting apocalyptic situation would occur without doubt long before, that is from 2100. A publication (Radio-Canada: climate change [5]) of October 7, 2018 announced that 1.5 ° C would finally be reached around 2030 or, at the latest, around 2040 or 2050. The ice in the extreme north and south is melting faster than expected. Permafrost thaws at high speed releasing methane in large quantities, which accelerates global warming. The oceans are also warming and acidifying. Forests burn (often uncontrollably) releasing considerable amounts of CO2. Climate disasters are on the rise [6], species are disappearing at a maddening rate, without the population really realizing it. And, we don't really know what we're eating anymore [7].


At the same time, in the space of just a few years, we have entered an economic era of service. A sector of economic activity that is already preparing to radically transform to make way for the 4e industrial revolution, promising a huge impact on our lives. Robotization, software robots and artificial intelligence are upon us - thousands of jobs will disappear. However, the service sector, more buoyant of a clean economy, had to reduce the pressure on available resources of all kinds. This has not happened despite the potential of efficient entrepreneurial modes of recycling and savings. On the contrary, everything has accelerated. The expected magic coming from innovative and responsible humans, then perfectly aware of the urgency to act, "to save the world from the catastrophe which awaits its children", is still not there. Resources are running out two to three times faster than we anticipated. We are heading straight towards a deep precipice, a terrible wall, towards the collapse of the economies predicted, in 1972, by the Meadow report (Limits to growth) [8].

Here we are faced with challenges that humanity has never known. Experts go so far as to announce that we have entered a terrifying process, that of a 6e mass extinction of the biosphere [9].

Living in a world of limited resources, can a CONSCIOUS, RESPONSIBLE, COMMUNITY-BASED ENTREPRENEURIAL culture of a DIGITAL nature change the world, save the economy of our regions and rehumanize our organizations?

An undeniable fact: entrepreneurship is the engine of the economy. And now, digital technologies are essential for entrepreneurial success in virtually all businesses, and even in all areas of life - social, cultural, political, educational. Nothing escapes it, digital technology has a major impact on our lives and challenges our societies, pushing them to transform.

The greatest wealth of a region (of a province, a country) is the entrepreneurial potential of its citizens [10] (Fortin, P.-A.) and the capacity of each of them to bring about entrepreneurial innovations that can be distributed locally, regionally and, as the case may be, at the provincial, national and international levels. We must also consider as essential the commitment of everyone to their community. These factors place each human environment (e.g. region, province) in absolute urgency: that of agreeing on the best means to avoid "the loss of human potential" and thus "to put this human potential to profit".


Providing a global environment that will allow students to learn to love their living environment, the one in which each person will grow up and live happily in their region, depends on a set of conditions. Among these, there is the capacity of an environment to mobilize around a ecosystem collective intelligence "Education - business - state". We must learn to foresee the strategies and the means which allow each and everyone to find "their rightful place". Everywhere we see "a shameless waste of human potential". The madness of our obligations, our eagerness, our worries, also selfishness, make us forget the essential: “each person is in himself an unsuspected universe of capacities and skills to make him to discover, to discover, to make emerge, to make shine ”in order to succeed in our projects in community. To see how I can get involved, to contribute, to THINK BIG, to imagine that I can change the world, fundamentally requires a period of childhood and youth - at home, at school, in one's community, in the setting of a job - which forges a solid self-confidence. Because, it is indeed a question of first learning to ENTERPRISE, then UNDERTAKE and finally to CREATE INNOVATION in a conscious, responsible and autonomous way. Allowing and allowing yourself to think outside the box to achieve this is essential. This requires a new model of skills to which schools, businesses and the state must jointly and intensely contribute. Already, many are looking at it. In the entrepreneurial world, let us mention the liberated business model which is gaining momentum in Europe, as well as the efforts of the Groupement des chefs d'entreprise (Quebec, New Brunswick, Belgium, Switzerland, France). In education, we can cite the global movement around the skills of the 21e century. The state, for its part, sets its priorities. His announced choices reflect the will of a majority of voters.

So what do we want (… What do the business world, the municipal world, the cultural world, the education world want and what do people want for their children)?

A clear observation: ... to act ONLY N 'is MORE the solution.

CONSCIOUS ENTREPRENEURSHIP (... responsible and community-based)

We pollute our ecosystems. The plastic in our oceans, on shores and elsewhere, as well as a set of harmful molecules released into the biosphere, like plastic nanoparticles, alone illustrate the ravages of our unconsciousness. Yet it is the quality of our food, the oxygen essential to life but also the beauty of the Earth that we are destroying. The living is bruised by a dominant and omnipresent economic model, a devastating unbridled capitalism feeding on ever greater profit and at all costs. This leads to major complexities.

We are faced with a huge challenge, but quite a challenge. Each region, province, nation must learn to “do its part”. This concerns the STATE, ENTERPRISE and EDUCATION. “All of us” in short, each individual, not forgetting our own individual commitment.

Conscious entrepreneurship is defined as the awareness of the impact of one's mode of entrepreneurship on oneself, on others (communities), and on the nature that nourishes us. Each and every one is theself-entrepreneur, a human DNA dedicated, here, to the practice of ethical, socially responsible and humanizing entrepreneurship (Levesque, R., 2016). A conscious entrepreneur works as much for his own benefit as for that of the human and natural environments he / she shares.

Conscious entrepreneurship, because it includes everyone coming to see the importance of all contributions - girls, women, boys, men of all ages. People who understand the importance of committing to reconcile "human and nature", and who will not seek to derive an unfair advantage that exploits the other.

Conscious entrepreneurship, because it is also about raising awareness and training with regard to economic production methods, and to bring out more circular economies [11], social and solidarity [12], and sharing [13] [14] which are facilitated by digital means. Humanized entrepreneurship at the service of a viable future and economies, all of which bring greater social justice for all. An entrepreneurship that will help reduce waste, improve the concept of recovery, reuse, of our consumption patterns, and which considers access to water and food and to various basic needs, as a right fundamental for all humans. This in order to achieve real global sustainable development.

In Quebec, the contribution of the social and solidarity economy to economic development is considerable. It concerns more than 7,000 companies, 125,000 jobs and a turnover of 17 billion $. Today, the social and solidarity economy represents more than 5 % of Quebec's gross domestic product (GDP) [15].

We see here an illustration of an economic model not centered on profit and continuous growth, and vigorously contributing to the vitality of communities.


Digital technologies facilitate our communications all over the world, they allow people located thousands of kilometers away to work together (and efficiently), and more and more often in real time. To move to live in a big city where are located a set of services facilitating the operation of his business, his professional emancipation… is less necessary. Believe that the city is a favorable promise for an increase in its quality of life NOT'is MORE true. We can now get huge amounts of information instantly or almost instantly no matter where we are. High speed internet services are also imperative. Technologies which nowadays promote unprecedented innovations in practically all fields. In New Brunswick (Canada), this is particularly the case in education as evidenced by the annual conference held at the Haut-Madawaska Learning Center (CAHM) [16], an entrepreneurial community school in the village of Clair.

A digital transition leading to a cascade of transitions: possible?

Several questions arise around the digital transition in progress and in hyper accelerated mode. A first is to know if it can lead us towards an acceleration of the ecological transition? Living in an interconnected and interdependent world, could these transitions help curb the climate crisis and others that are emerging, making the effects generated beneficial to regions, states, humanity, and advantageous for biodiversity? A third question calls out: can digital technology contribute to more social justice and a more equitable redistribution of wealth? Indeed, we see the idea that digital technology can advance the transition from the current economic model (conventional / linear economy) dominated by a behavior that consists of taking, consuming, throwing and polluting ..., towards an economy truly viable and therefore, in the long term, free from our current consumption patterns.

Consider the electrification of transportation (Radio-Canada, September 2018) [17] which opens up new possibilities providing the beginnings of an answer to these questions [18]. Another view is the idea of a complementary currency taking on the appearance of a cryptocurrency or some other form. It would be separate from market money, in order to free up the financing of the Bnothing VSCommon of its dependence on the performance of trade (Derudder, P.) [19]. Other tracks are also proposed to make GROW our economic model in its noblest sense. For example, intellectuals, businessmen (interview with Serge Godin, Radio-Canada, May 2017 [20]) and states [21] are now considering the idea of a minimum basic income in the context of jobs replaced by technological advances (robots, etc.).

In short, digital technology could be a trigger giving a cascade of transitions for an economic model that is less linked to the sole idea of making it grow indefinitely. Boosting the economy by agreeing to review some of its foundations so that it is truly for the benefit of all appears, in the eyes of a growing number of people, more promising, because, more humanizing and more realistic. Indeed, we live in a world at the limit of its resources. In this regard, the 1er August 2018 had been consumed what the Earth is able to regenerate over a year, a date that occurs earlier and earlier in a year. For example, in 1970 when we were only 3.7 billion inhabitants, we began to live on credit compared to the resources available on December 21 [22].

Conscious, responsible and community entrepreneurship, coupled with the digital tool, offers the prospect of a culture of women and men committed to a future marked by a reduction in inequalities, more oriented towards more social justice and prosperity. economic, here and elsewhere, more equitable.

The upheavals already on our doorstep due to the growing climate crisis, and several other crises which are linked and inter-influenced (ecological, financial, economic, cultural, media, trust and others), force us to quickly look in all directions to find what could improve a set of imbalances that put at risk, and possibly in the near future, our quality of life, humanity, as well as the thousands of species living alongside us on planet Earth.


It is absolutely obvious that the DIGITAL (digital, technologies), this fabulous revolutionary invention has an unmatched advantage: speed. Another advantage too: process efficiency. Time is running out, he is no longer waiting for anyone. We must agree to fundamentally change our consumption and economic production patterns, and this in record time. [23]. Children of all peoples have a right to it.

By coupling these advantages to those already available, and to others that human genius will be able to imagine (conscious entrepreneurship, science), we have the right to hope to achieve in time the imperative transformations for communities (regions, provinces) and a viable world. "If we say it's too late, then it's over - it's really too late" (Hubert Reeves, documentary titled Earth seen from the heart [24]).


Isn't it high time to imagine and implement government policies, educational methods and an entrepreneurial model that will massively generate ingenious ideas, put them into action, all guided by a new consciousness (... ) for sustainable living environments - both for each of our communities and for those around the world?

Isn't that one of the major roles of a ECOLE OF HIS TIME,ENTREPRISE OF TODAY, from a RESPONSIBLE STATE?


We do not have access to another biosphere, nor to another town like that of Earth.

[10] FORTIN, Paul-Arthur, (2002). Entrepreneurial culture, an antidote to poverty, Éditions Fondation de l'Entrepreneurship du Québec.

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