Omina2018 brings together leading lights in fashion, global development and earth defending in Costa Rica.
What would you do if you had 72 hours to refashion sustainable thinking? That’s the question asked by Omina2018, a breakthrough symposium that will take place in San José, Costa Rica, on 7th-9th June.
The brainchild of Costa Rican based social entrepreneur Andrea Somma and digital entrepreneur Carmen Busquets, in partnership with Eco-Age, the sustainability consultancy founded by Livia Firth, the three days are designed to unleash radical disruption and creative thinking and ideas. Delegates and online followers will be invited to immerse themselves in sustainability and working practices, language and protocols and then to throw them up in the air in favour of a fresh, new approach that is fit for purpose given the challenges we face.
Omina2018 delegates will hear from leading practitioners in global change. The female-dominated line up is notable by its fresh and uncluttered perspective. “Sustainability in fashion and associated sectors is dominated by old thinking,” explains Livia Firth, creative director of Eco-Age who has helped to put together Omina2018, “including the corporate led agenda on reform which has led to a stranglehold on progress. We need fresh ideas and brilliant communication. So many people tell me that the very language of sustainability is inadequate, so we’re inviting our delegates to start with a clean slate.”
Andrea Somma, CEO and Co-Founder of OMINA says: “It’s no coincidence that this new fresh approach on sustainability is launching in Costa Rica. We founded Omina with the conviction that Latin America has precisely a lot to add to a debate that has been for too long dominated by the northern hemisphere. In this case, people from all over the continent, from Argentina to Mexico, are converging this June in San José not only to learn from global experts, but also to share what themselves are already doing to save the future for all of us. This kind of empowerment is what we celebrate and want to show to the rest of the world. This is a summit for the people from the people.”
The summit invites delegates to press pause for 72 hours on hectic lives and immerse themselves in the most dynamic research and practice on the planet. The tone for inspiration and provocation will be set by Paul Hawken whose manifesto for climate optimism, Drawdown, has helped to reframe the response to climate and environmental change. Global environment campaigner, Giselle Bundchen, fashion industry supremo Nina Garcia, Latin American sustainability leader Oskar Metsavaht, Spanish eco innovator Carmen Hijosa, and many more will take part in the three days summit.
Carmen Busquets, says: “As a WWF council member and someone who has been supporting artisans and disruptive ideas for over 30 years in aim of higher efficiency and fairness within luxury fashion, I am excited to be joining forces with this international group of people in fashion who share the goal of creating a zero-waste culture in the industry. We are on the cusp of tremendous positive change on the planet and Omina2018 is about embracing that. Costa Rica was chosen as the location because the country is a leader in social progress and sustainability in Latin America, and we want other countries to follow its example.”
The three days of Omina2018 will be shared across the globe in an ambitious interactive project. A dedicated editorial desk will update from the sessions and harvest responses from a global online audience. “We have all attended conferences which are dreaded talking shops,” says Livia Firth, “so for this summit we are looking for fresh outcomes. Everyone we consulted said that they felt constrained by old fashioned language and ideas around sustainability. So we’re challenging our delegates, both in Costa Rica and anybody who wants to join as via social media, to work with us in creating some new language, expressions and definitions.”
Alexander Mora, Minister of Foreign Trade of Costa Rica, says: “For decades, Costa Rica has had a long trajectory of social and public innovations that have created the conditions to be recognized as the most efficient nation in the world converting economic growth into social progress. Also, it is recognized as a global leader in ecological efficiency, committed with carbon neutrality and sustainability. A strong democracy, a stable economy, a high quality of life, a green country brand, a high respect for human rights, an exemplar in regenerative development, Costa Rica can be considered a well-being country. Therefore, it is absolutely pertinent and relevant to host in our country Omina2018 on sustainable lifestyle. It is very well aligned with our policies, with our country brand and with our culture. We will be pleased to become a vehicle to share with the world the essence of our wellbeing.”
Omina is non-profit initiative created by Andrea Somma and Carmen Busquets to inspire and empower people to change their mindsets to a more sustainable lifestyle. Omina (from the Latin ‘omen’) were signs perceived as being able to predict the future. Ominas anticipated a major change in the future. Omina was created to become a hub for creatives, doers, entrepreneurs, and in general all individuals interested in rebuilding our collective future based on sustainable, fair and interdependent practices, to convene, get trained, get mentored and supported.”