Olivier Beys

Olivier Beys

http://www.tournevie.be

Renewable EnergySustainable Cities and CommunitiesResponsible ConsumptionClimate Action

Role

Policy officer at WWF Belgium / Communicator at Tournevie

Quote

“I believe that getting the message across and inspiring others is perhaps just as important or even more important than carrying out the project.”

Who are you?

With some friends I recently started Tournevie, a tool library in the heart of Brussels. A tool library works almost exactly like a regular library: in exchange for a small annual fee, members get unlimited access to a wide range of quality tools. We aim to develop this community initiative into a meeting place where skills are shared and people from different backgrounds learn from each other: our own contribution to the sharing economy. Professionally, I have worked for a number of years as a versatile policy advisor with experience in topics such as sustainability, foreign affairs, human rights and the social and environmental dimensions of international trade. At the moment I work as climate and energy policy officer at WWF Belgium.

Why are you part of Generation T?

I have a wide network of people, topics and issues I care about, which means I always try to connect the dots, enjoying the complexity and diversity this brings. I am certain the experience of what I have learned and done so far could be a valuable input to other people's projects, but I am equally looking forward to learning from others. Sustainability really goes to the heart of what I do in just about anything. For me this simply means people as well as nature and its ecosystems can thrive within the limits of the planet. In this view, abundance and the opportunities of diversity, rather than scarcity and extractivism, are the leading principles of our (global) economy.

A specific example on how your project or activities make a difference and initiate change:

Professionally, my policy work consists of convincing people to acknowledge and take into account sustainability in their everyday work, be it foreign affairs, trade, energy or other topics. I am doing this face to face, through media actions, in writing (and blogging) and all the classical methods used for advocacy work. At Tournevie I was able to put this experience in convincing people to practical use. Before even starting out, we got 156 people to become a member of our tool library - thanks to the sheer impact of our communication, for which I am responsible in the organisation. I believe getting the message across and inspiring others can be just as important or even more important than carrying out the project.