IMPACT LABS: Accelerating Sustainability with the Power of Digital

Soham Banerjee

In a world where the impact of businesses on people, society, and the planet has never been more critical, a new economic model needs to emerge to sustain the progress. With a vision to bring this to effect, IMPACT LABS is a pioneering research lab and business transformation consulting boutique dedicated to shaping a sustainable world where businesses are not just profit-driven entities but forces for good. Founded by Vincent Stuhlen, an INSEAD alumnus, IMPACT LABS is at the forefront of providing next generation consulting services that drive positive impact across sectors. 

During my summer break, I had the incredible opportunity to work with this exceptional team in Lisbon, Portugal, contributing to their transformative initiatives. At the heart of IMPACT LABS' mission is a multifaceted approach to sustainability, focusing on various sectors that are both major contributors to greenhouse gas emissions and have significant potential for transformation through technology. 

These sectors include food and agriculture, fashion and luxury, real estate, and technology. My role involved conducting extensive market research within these sectors, delving deep into the value chain to identify emission sources and exploring digital solutions that could mitigate environmental impact at every stage. 

I created a document on sectors adaptation that outlines the trends and accompanying solutions for each of the sectors. I worked to design tailored offerings of IMPACT LABS for different types of companies – large companies and impact scaleups. 

For large companies, the lab would provide comprehensive end-to-end digitisation of sustainability services. This includes meticulous data and systems audits, data sourcing and modelling, and the implementation of a 360° transformation cockpit. This holistic approach ensures that large corporations can embrace sustainability seamlessly, integrating it into their core operations and strategies. 

On the other hand, for impact scaleups, IMPACT LABS will offer a suite of services encompassing sustainability engineering, eco-systemic innovation, impact analytics, and business model transformation. These services are designed to empower smaller, impactful companies, enabling them to navigate the complexities of sustainability with expert guidance. 

By assisting these businesses in enhancing their eco-friendly practices, IMPACT LABS is fostering a new generation of companies that prioritise positive impact alongside profit. 

A novel product I helped develop in IMPACT LABS’ journey is the launch of the SustainTech Radar. In the rapidly evolving landscape of digital technologies, this radar serves as a navigational tool, guiding businesses through the myriad of options available. The radar is meticulously curated through a three-step process: scouting the tech landscape for emerging solutions, rigorous analysis considering their sustainability impact and market viability, and providing detailed RFPs for businesses to explore these solutions further. This innovative approach ensures that companies can make informed decisions about adopting sustainable technologies tailored to their specific needs. 

IMPACT LABS is now delving into ground-breaking research on the 'Return on Impact of Sustainability for Businesses.' This research initiative explores the macroeconomic, microeconomic, and financial aspects of the returns that companies can expect when they embark on a sustainability transformation journey. By understanding the tangible benefits of sustainability, businesses are encouraged not just by moral imperative but also by economic advantage to integrate sustainable practices into their core strategies. 

My collaboration with IMPACT LABS on this research initiative has been a source of immense excitement and inspiration. 

Working alongside experts in the field, I will delve deeper into understanding the economic implications of sustainable practices and I am optimistic about the transformative power of this research. It has the potential to revolutionise how businesses perceive sustainability, shifting it from a mere obligation to a strategic advantage. 

In conclusion, IMPACT LABS stands as a pioneer in the realm of sustainability consulting, redefining the way businesses operate and perceive their roles in society. Through their innovative services, sector-specific expertise, and cutting-edge research, they are paving the way for a future where every business, regardless of its scale, can be a positive force for change. 

My experience with IMPACT LABS has been nothing short of transformative, igniting a passion for sustainable practices and a deep understanding of their profound impact on our world. 

As I continue on my journey, I carry with me the invaluable lessons and insights gained during my time with this exceptional organization, inspiring me to contribute actively to the creation of a sustainable and harmonious world for all.

This internship experience was supported by the INSEAD Hoffmann Institute Impact Internship Stipend and gifts from alumni.