Fixing capitalism. Creating a humanist operating system for companies. Celebrating humans as anti-machines in an age of machines. Actually, becoming climate-positive human beings. Enjoying moments of connection, affection, and wonder that make “our shared humanity” not just a cliché line but something that makes us cry.
We don’t just want you to commit to this battle. We want you to fall in love with it. And you will not be alone. The Residents at the House of Beautiful Business 2019 have your back, including:
CO-FOUNDER, CYBORG FOUNDATION
Sir Paul Collier
PROFESSOR OF ECONOMICS AND PUBLIC POLICY, BLAVATNIK SCHOOL OF GOVERNMENT, UNIVERSITY OF OXFORD; AUTHOR, THE FUTURE OF CAPITALISM
DESIGN DIRECTOR, AIRBNB
FOUNDER AND CEO, TASTEMAKERS AFRICA
CO-FOUNDER AND GERMANY DIRECTOR, CENTRE FOR FEMINIST FOREIGN POLICY
CO-FOUNDER AND EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, SHENZHEN OPEN INNOVATION LAB
VICE PRESIDENT, PRODUCT STRATEGY AND DESIGN, HELIX
CO-FOUNDER AND COO, SHARETRIBE
VICE PRESIDENT, EXCEED CAPITAL
ARTIST, MUSICIAN, MULTI-INSTRUMENTALIST, AND ARTISTIC DIRECTOR
CO-FOUNDER AND SOCIAL IMPACT DESIGNER, ANEWKIND; CHIEF SUSTAINABILITY OFFICER, GREENLINK
MEDIA THEORIST, AUTHOR, TEAM HUMAN
WRITER, SCIENTIST, PERFORMER, AND CREATIVE WRITER FOR GOOGLE ASSISTANT
SENIOR RESEARCH FELLOW, CLAYTON CHRISTENSEN INSTITUTE FOR DISRUPTIVE INNOVATION
ARCHITECT, PLANNER, AND URBAN DESIGNER; FOUNDER, CONSCIOUS CITIES; DIRECTOR, HUME
HEAD OF CULTURE, STOCKHOLM SCHOOL OF ENTREPRENEURSHIP
CO-FOUNDER AND CO-EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, COWORKER.ORG
The battle for beautiful business will take place in two arenas: on Saturday (Nov 2) and Sunday (Nov 3), we will return to the Portuguese Academy of Sciences for our kick-off. From Monday to Wednesday, we will then move into a new mission control of beautiful business (soon to be revealed) in the heart of downtown Lisbon.
The third annual gathering of the House of Beautiful Business took place again in Lisbon from November 3-8, 2018. Over the course of six days, more than 400 residents from business, public sector, academia, and the arts gathered in the Academy of Sciences and the boutique Gallery House hotel.
Some of the program highlights included Priya Parker’s opening session on The Art of Gathering, the Conference of Beautiful Business, the Beautiful Game: Individualism vs. Collectivism, evening Salons on key themes such as Beautiful AI, Purpose and Profit, Gender and Identity in Business, Warm Data, The Future of Intimacy, as well a Data Bazaar, an Actor’s Studio, 12 Toast Dinners, field trips, and much more. Moreover, residents were encouraged to contribute to the House’s permanent spaces, from the Museum of Beautiful Business, an AI-in-Residence, the Music Studio, the Magnum Live Lab, VR Screenings, and the House’s bookstore.
The House of Beautiful Business opened its doors during and before the Web Summit in Lisbon to explore “the very human future of business” in a playful and intimate setting. Over 200 residents — founders, business leaders, investors, social entrepreneurs, writers, philosophers, scientists, designers, technologists, and artists — convened in two locations for the first week-long House.
Some of the program highlights included a public debate on “Next Start-up: Humanity”; the Conference of Beautiful Business, a full-day program featuring keynotes and panels; Ethnographic Excursions from rituals of commerce to author Fernando Pessoa; 15 Toast Dinners, a Beautiful Game; a Silent Party, and more.
The first House of Beautiful Business took place during Mobile World Congress (MWC) in a guild house in the Gothic quarter of Barcelona. In two days rich with talks, discussions, workshops, breakfast sessions, and dinner salons we explored how to lead with purpose and passion; build human companies and workplaces; create beautiful products, services, and experiences; and design for intimacy and meaning.
Some of the program highlights included “The Great Debate: Technology and Humanity” curated together with Futurist Gerd Leonhard; “Purpose Prototyping” sessions; and panel discussions on “Beautiful Cities,” “Pleasure and Pain in the Age of AI and VR,” and “Disengaged Tech.” Moreover, we examined lessons from local heroes FC Barcelona and the “Beautiful Game,” and offered a Silent Dinner.
An Evening of Beautiful Business took place in Munich, co-hosted by The Business Romantic Society and our friends and partners from diffferent. We mixed ideas with music, debates with soul-warming food prepared on site, and welcomed our guests with a poetic elevator ride.
Fabian Kienbaum, Chairman of the Board & CEO, Kienbaum Consultants
Rosa Riera, VP Employer Branding & Social Innovation, Siemens
Limor Schweitzer, Founder and CEO, MOV.AI
Tex, Singer-Songwriter & Founder, TV Noir
Aaron Pereira, Researcher, TU Munich
Dina Andersen, Founder, DNA Corporate Spaces
Rochelle Melo & Dijana Galijasevic, Initiators, Positive Business Lab
Josef Ressle, Musician
Sophie Jonke, Local Head Munich, ReDI School of Digital Integration
Elham Danesh, Student, ReDI School of Digital Integration
Tobias Koedel, Head of Leadership 2020, Daimler
Co-hosted by Nika Wiedinger, Simon Berkler, and Sven Krüger.
Together, we explored the concept and meaning of the ‘soul’ from a business, philosophical, and artistic point of view. With speakers from business, philosophy, and the arts.
Co-hosted by Andrea Bury.
In an age when exponential growth has become the premise of business-as-usual, a counter-narrative has started to emerge on more sustainable economic development. While all eyes are fixed on the next big bang from Silicon Valley and its rising rivals in China, we want to shed light on the region of Middle East and North Africa.
How might the future of the MENA region’s labor markets and economy look like? What are its foundations, and how do we build with the intention of ‘growing to last’?
Together with speakers from business, politics, and the arts, we explored existing initiatives and untapped opportunities to help strengthen fairness, inclusivity, and social cohesion.
Co-hosted by Ulrich Meyer-Höllings.
In collaboration with University of Stellenbosch Business School and the Institute of Futures Research.
“I feel the other, I dance the other, therefore I am” – Leopold Senghor
Between freedom and slavery, inequality and activism, European history and African heritage, we find ourselves in a space of contrast and contradictions. In the spirit of the local ethos of ‘Ubuntu’ (I am, because you are), which enforces an inclusive growth mindset following the principle of ‘a herd moves at the speed of the slowest animal’, any of the current forms of capitalism couldn’t be more ‘unafrican’.
For many years, South Africa has been driving forward its socio-economic development by capitalist thinking while staying true to its roots of a more inclusive approach. Seizing the global appetite for alternative economies, where could possible future(s) of capitalism lie?
Co-hosted by Mykel Dixon.
We look forward for answers when perhaps we should look back for better questions. One place might be the Japanese philosophy – Wabi Sabi.
In Wabi Sabi, everything is made more beautiful by baring the marks and scars of age and individuality. Repairs and reconstructions are to be appreciated rather than made invisible. Peace can be found by embracing the transitory, incomplete and impermanent nature of existence. Perhaps if we embraced a little Wabi Sabi in our work, we might find greater satisfaction in simple moments. More enjoyment in everyday interactions. More reverence for the often unheroic essence of our professional lives.
Together we turned the mundane into the mysterious, find fortune in fleeting experience, and savour the inevitable mess of making beautiful business.
Proudly supported by Death Gin & The Catalyst Network.
Co-hosted by Daniel Gomez-Seidel and Pablo Criado-Peréz.
What have been the most important decisions you have made so far in your life? What was it that in the end nudged you towards one direction or the other? And how will you find a compromise between trusting your guts and trusting the other, in an age of biometric scanning, smart machines, and predictive analytics? Are we witnessing an evolution of decision-making?
With technological and scientific progress, we’re not only exposed to increasing data-driven knowledge, but also gain more insight into the unexplored mysteries of human decision-making. Today, tensions arise between the intuitive, and the analytical, the individual and the collective, the manipulative and the altruistic. How do these tensions affect business, culture and everyday life?
What essential aspects of our own humanity might be crucial factors to count in, when making the right choice – and how many will be real free will?
Together with speakers from science, business, politics, technology, and the arts, we explored the evolving nature of decision-making and start deconstructing, by experiencing.
Co-hosted by Sofia Natal and Sophie Devonshire.
How we meet is important. In business, as in life.
We live in a superfast world where (safe) places for connection and meaning - superslow by nature - are hard to access. What does pace and purpose mean in today's times and how do we incorporate the role of personal and organizational purpose in business and in our lives?
Together with speakers from business, philosophy, and technology, we invited you to to pause think, discover, explore and connect together – in a beautiful place.
Profits from the event will be donated to The Big Issue, the pioneering social enterprise which supports the homeless.
Co-hosted by Carmen Boronat Badia and Malena Calva.
What gets your inner fire burning? Can you recall the feeling of an intense urge for knowledge and curiosity back when we were children?
Whether creating exactly this emotional pattern within organizational cultures, channeling frustration as a positive force to do business, or fueling your creative juices, passion and learning belong together.
At the Chamber of Beautiful Business, Madrid we experienced the beautiful duality of passion and learning on an individual, organizational, and societal level.
Co-hosted by Eda Çarmikli and Markus William Lehto.
Nothing is as powerful as an idea whose time has come. – Victor Hugo
What if business was more beautiful, more human, and even a source of good in the world?
Istanbul is a unique bridge between the East and the West, constantly swirling between the timeless and the untested, ready or not. The energies of Yin and Yang, and the living spirit of empires and religions are vibrantly displayed in countless layers of the duality we live out as a daily reality.
It is the city to explore and celebrate our deeper and more complete selves – to witness and transcend the conditioned mindset and patterns that shape our present reality and find clues leading to our full, often untapped, potential.
Together with a tribe of global game changers, we will be exploring the bridge to our exponential humanity, to eventually co-create a better future for all. If this sounds like you, come join us.
Co-hosted by Sarah Souli.
How can purposeful integration change communities?
In mathematics, integration refers to the process of finding a function - it’s one of the building blocks of calculus. But creating beautiful businesses and meaningful communities is not a math problem - it’s a deeply human one. What happens when we use the positive attributes of integration - connection, exchange, education - to create new webs?
Athens happens. In the past decade, Athens has witnessed incredible change: political movements, economic crises, and migration flows have all changed the city’s face. As a result, the city is in the middle of integrating new communities, new cultures, and new ways of doing business.
Designed to resemble a modern salon litteraire, the Chamber of Beautiful Business, Athens opened a space for people with business brains and artistic hearts to share our ideas and exchange our experiences around integration.
Co-hosted by Abel Buko.
Cold wars are conflicts between nations that don’t involve direct military action but is pursued primarily through economic and political actions, propaganda, or proxy wars waged by surrogates. Climate change is our cold war in times of unbearable heat.
“It’s not the destruction of Earth only, that we’re facing”, says Sir David Attenborough, but it’s “our familiar, natural world, and our uniquely rich human culture” that’s at stake.
At the Chamber of Beautiful Business, Stockholm, we debated how a different way of doing business is necessary to help solve “Our Cold War” between humans and humans?
Co-hosted by Ralph Talmont.
In today’s reality, where “the other” can either be a fellow human, a machine, or something in between, it’s not enough anymore to put up the label of diversity. Too much has been raged, too much has been going in the very wrong direction – whether we look to business, politics, or society. The world feels smaller than ever before and yet, populism, discrimination, and isolation has never been more in the center of our zeitgeist.
What’s needed is a way to learn what it takes to really foster a way of thinking that includes perspectives of everyone, or to put it differently, the “many more”. Less than a checkbox and rather as a quintessential principle to do business more beautifully.
How might we acknowledge the similarities and differences in decision-making, collaborating, and creating from a true multitude of aspirations and goals?
Co-hosted by Meralon Shandler and Randal Hrytzak.
In times where every answer is just one click away, and digital platforms have altered the meaning of truth and fake, where will we reconnect back to myths and mystery that have been an integral part of human history?
In our search for predictability and efficiency, have we forgotten the mystery makes our search possible?
What's the cost of certainty in business?
If technology and AI provide all the answers, where will the questions come from?
Together, we will be exploring the wonder of not knowing, in the intersection of technological transparency, and what makes us inherently human.
Co-hosted by Kitty Leering.
How to find what you didn't know you were looking for.
As we race through our fast-paced lives all the time sharpening our focus in order to create the beautiful change we are looking for in ourselves, our ventures and the world, are we losing sight of the equally beautiful opportunities lurking in our peripheries?
Rather than leaving such opportunities to chance, how might we create the space required to let these opportunities in?
How might we derail predictability and instead engineer for serendipity?
Together with a designer of human connections and a curator of happiness, we'll be exploring how we can create the conditions for serendipity to happen.
Co-hosted by Roberta Treno and Paulo Carvalho.
“All our knowledge has its origins in our perceptions. (...) All sciences are vain and full of errors that are not born of experience, the mother of all knowledge." – Leonardo da Vinci
Machines can be smart, but wisdom is human. If so, how is it possible to re-discover what makes our abilities uniquely human in an age of machines?
Wisdom is the result of the human evolutionary process. We are artists, socially bound by the biology of love and belonging, while being a product of nature, constraint by it, observers of it, and creatures of realities. Yet the “god-like creatures” in us still invite us to be creators of a singular machine. Now, what is the ultimate machine wisdom? To be wise enough, that no human could use it wrongly – and where do we draw the line between right and wrong?
Together with local speakers from business, technology, and the arts, we’ll be exploring how to create and guard wisdom, what we may learn from machines and what they may learn from us.
Co-hosted by Karel Golta and Stefanie Wibbeke.
We live in a world that is not only surrounded, but more and more immersed by technology. From the way we communicate and interact, to the places we shop at, to the world we live, work, and play in. Opening the doors of infinite possibilities, we wonder how to decode the software of tech-as-usual and extract, what makes our lives more joyful.
How might we discover, enable, and sustain joy-bringing technologies?
We invited pretty smart and future minded guests to inspire and challenge us with their experience. Discuss for example with Raphael Gielgen Vitra’s concept of new work and future employer environments. Or discover why e-Commerce is moving towards brick-and-mortar like Bonprix just did while talking to Mathias Sander from DanPearlman who makes any space a stage. And many more.
Profits from the event will be donated to the ReDI School of Digital Integration gGmbH, a non-profit tech school for human with refugee and immigrant background.
Co-hosted by Theodore Erasmus.
A queen city in U.S. Midwest, Cincinnati used to be a glittering center of philanthropy, culture, and the arts. Over time the city’s culture was shaped by business behemoths that transformed the city’s identity, job by job – into a company town.
Today there’s the stirrings of an art renaissance. New voices has emerged that reimagine the city as a place for the interplay between the aesthetics, historical culture, and creativity.
Can an art renaissance reimagine the city’s contemporary identity?
Together with local voices from old and new business, arts and culture, as well as performances by the Mamluft Dance Company and Concert Nova, we will open a space to discuss, how art can be incorporated at the center of Cincy’s future as a city to live and work in.
Co-hosted by Sonja Kresojevic.
In partnership with Dorćol Platz, Idea Port, and ICT Hub.
“Gazing at the rain, I consider what it means to belong, to become part of something. To have someone cry for me.” –Haruki Murakami, Dance Dance Dance
Set in a place that has survived a war, disruption, political turmoil and by that has learned to adapt, we look at the personal journeys of those who left, those who stayed, and those who came back.
What happens to our identity when our place of belonging stops to exist?
With voices of local and global communities, we'll be exploring the loss of (national) identity and discovering a new way of belonging in a culture of digital nomadism and the gig economy.