Interview with Veronika Beer, participant in initiative to bring new vision and leadership to the rubber industry
Singapore - The International Rubber Study Group (IRSG) has recently launched the NextGen Rubber Leaders Programme, as part of its mission to increase transparency and support inclusive and sustainable growth in the world rubber sector.
Through the initiative, IRSG aims to ensure the involvement of a new generation of leaders, who can bring new vision and innovative approaches to the natural and synthetic value-chains - as participant Veronika Beer explains in this Q&A:
Could you please let us know about this initiative NextGen Rubber Leaders Programme of which you are a member?
VB: The IRSG secretariat has launched the NextGen Rubber Leaders Program, a worldwide networking community for a limited number of young professionals with a passion for rubber.
The NexGen Rubber Leaders share a commitment to: address the urgent need to build an inclusive and sustainable rubber economy engage in national, regional, and global activities deliver innovative projects in support of our global rubber community.
Currently there are 13 participants in the programme, with diverse backgrounds and experiences. This is a truly international community with representatives from Singapore, Sri Lanka, India, Vietnam, Thailand, Cambodia, Brazil, Australia and of course Europe.
What have been your motivations to participate in the programme?
VB: Our global society is currently facing challenges which can only be solved on a collaborative, international level. Climate change, for instance. Another example are decent work conditions for everyone. The value chain of rubber products stretches around the whole globe.
Therefore, it can be part of the solution to those issues. I am glad to participate in the IRSG NextGen Rubber Leaders Programme because by connecting to the other participants, I can gain valuable insights into the meaning of those topics for other stakeholders of the rubber value chain.
I am looking forward to discussing thoughts and visions for the sustainable rubber value chain with the other fellows of the programme. I believe that together, we can achieve a holistic understanding of those topics. This common ground can serve as a solid base to create ideas as a group and in our individual spheres of action.
How do you think the young leaders in the rubber economy could benefit from the programme?
VB: The global orientation and the integration of the entire rubber value chain are making this programme unique. We have members from countries which produce natural rubber and members from countries which import rubber for their manufacturing industry.
Some of us work for industry, others for associations or in the service sector. What we have in common is our background in the rubber economy. The program gives us the opportunity to globally expand our network and to benefit from the individual experiences of the other participants.
What contribution might the participants of the programme bring in the global dialogue towards a sustainable and growing rubber sector?
VB: We as the NextGen Rubber Leaders group see ourselves as “ambassadors”. This involves sharing the insights and the knowledge that we have gained through the programme with our colleagues at work, with professionals from our national rubber economies, and with other regional and national stakeholders.
The NextGen Rubber Leaders Programme is certainly an ambitious project, what are the next steps and the initiatives that the members of the Programme are planning in the immediate future?
First, NextGen Rubber Leaders Programme collaborate with IRSG in the organisation of the World Rubber Summit 2022. The conference is held in presence from 24 to 26 May, 2022 in Singapore but it will also have an online stream.
It will be the first important opportunity for the NextGen Rubber Leaders’ to introduce the community to the general public and starting to interact with other stakeholders in the rubber economy.
Finally, what about future plans for the programme?
VB: In the longer run, the NRL community will conduct several projects in the fields of sustainability, innovation, inclusiveness and diversity.
By bringing forward those topics in the rubber industry, we aim to engage new generations in the world rubber economy and ultimately develop and share a NextGen Rubber Leaders’ vision of the future of this strategic sector for the world economy.
Any young professional that would like to be part of this community or just be in touch with us could contact us at: email@example.com