ASU alum helps millennials build a more sustainable future
An Arizona State University alumnus is putting his education to work through a product that helps people discover, adopt and share ideas for a more sustainable lifestyle. The eEcosphere app, now available for iOS, works by matching millennials with personally tailored ideas and quality local resources to improve their everyday decisions.
“Sixty-two percent of millennials believe they can make a difference at the local level, but when it comes down to finding specific opportunities to act, the experience breaks down,” explains eEcosphere co-founder Andrew Krause, who received a master’s degree from the School of Sustainability in 2012. “We use technology to help people develop a more sustainable lifestyle that is personalized to their needs, using a fun and collaborative experience.”
Krause was recently named a delegate to the United Nations Foundation Global Accelerator 2014. The accelerator brings together 100 of the world’s top entrepreneurs to work together with policy leaders on global issues. This group acts as delegates of the entrepreneur community to discover and deploy innovative solutions to drive progress on key Millennium Development Goals.
While a student at ASU, Krause recognized the importance of connecting people with personalized opportunities to improve their everyday decisions, using sustainability as a guide. He won support for his idea from ASU’s Edson Student Entrepreneurship Initiative, which provides funding, office space and training for students to explore their innovations.
To launch the online social platform, Krause worked with his mentor George Basile, a senior scientist at ASU’s Julie Ann Wrigley Global Institute of Sustainability, and two classmates. The platform is based on years of research conducted by Basile and other scientists.
After a year of development, the team believes they have found a promising approach to scaling up sustainability by combining smart phones, the social web and a unique collaboration format powered by their “sustainability lens."
Users build a plan for the future they want by adopting ideas for personal improvement. Ideas are selected through expert “Challenges” or the user-driven idea “Exchange.” Challenges contain several ideas and tools curated by experts to achieve outcomes in a specific area. They’re delivered through interactive conversations that establish how you’re doing and highlight specific opportunities to do better throughout the process. The Exchange is an idea marketplace where users create, tag, share and vote on ideas. Creating a new idea is as simple as taking a photo. For all ideas, eEcosphere creates a unique website that can be promoted by users via Facebook, Twitter and SMS.
The app and website creation service are just the first steps in eEcosphere's mission to empower people to build the sustainable future they want.
The app is now available for free in the Apple App store.