Our sustainability missions are ambitious. The mission project portfolio is where this ambition is made actionable. The portfolio consists of an evolving set of experiments derived from our mission declarations. Each project within the portfolio is qualified based on two criteria: its individual merit and its contribution to the portfolio as a whole.
To form our experiment portfolio, each mission has been broken down into five keystone projects. Efforts where made to intentionally distribute the set of projects within each mission across multiple levers of change. This was to ensure our total impact occurs across multiple levels of the systems we aim to intervene in. While the current framing of these projects is clear, their details are yet to be defined. Doing so will be done by ‘bringing the system into the room’; conducting an inquiry into the particulars of each project with those who understand the context most intimately. This ensures our missions and related projects are thoughtfully framed from the onset.
Diagram Reference: Inspired by Vinnova’s ‘Snowball Effect’ (2022)
The breadth of our experiment portfolio may evoke fears of ‘spreading ourselves too thin’ or ‘trying to do too much at once’. We acknowledge this – the scope and scale of the work to be done is not to be overlooked. To encourage momentum, we will be taking a phased approach to progressing through the portfolio. Just as a snowball gains speed and size the further it rolls down a hill, we envision our efforts compounding over time; growing in both capability and capacity with each successfully completed project.
As the ‘snowball effect’ produces a succession of compounding achievements, it will amplify the confidence and inspire the persistency required to deal with the inevitable difficulties of true systems change. As these traits grow, the Mission Lab and associated teams will become more capable at overcoming the inherent friction and inertia that exists within the structures of the systems we wish to create change within.
Moreover, just as it is inevitable that a rolling snowball will shed and replace some of its snow as it rotates, the composition of the mission portfolio will also change over time. The initial conditions of where we are starting from have directly (and in many ways indirectly) shaped the first instantiation of the portfolio. As we move forward – equipped with a learning mindset – it is inevitable that the contents and processes that drive the construction of the portfolio will adapt to the new contexts within which we are trying to create change.