Catalyst Debates 2014: Does Generation Y trust business on sustainability?

The debate, held on 9 September 2014, discussed whether Generation Y trusts businesses to provide solutions to the great global challenges such as climate change. The debate also looked at whether Generation Y is prepared to challenge the status quo and believe they have their own individual power.


  1. On our expert panel were Adam Grodecki, consultant at Boston Consulting Group and founder of Student Hubs; Kathleen Enright, director of OgilvyEarth; Dr Bernie Hogan, research fellow at the Oxford Internet Institute; and Kirsty Schneeberger, co-founder of Beautiful Corporations. The debate was chaired by Julia Groves, managing director of Trillion Fund.
  2. Watch the highlights of the debate here:
  3. Catalyst Debates 2014: Does Generation Y trust business on sustainability?
  4. Julia Groves opens up the debate asking for each panelist's opening statement on what they feel lies behind Generation Y's scepticism of business.
  5. Adam Grodecki states that for GenYers the notion of profit is all that matters is alien.
  6. Kathleen Enright believes that the problem doesn't need to be explained to Generation Y, but they should be encouraged to take action.
  7. Dr Bernie Hogan argues that Generation Y may not exist as an collective because of the strong notion of an individual choice.
  8. Kirsty Schneeberger believes there is a split in Generation Y between the trend-setters and the do-gooders, meaning businesses must engage differently with each group.
  9. Julia Groves then moved the debate on to whether Generation Y would move their money away from unsustainable corporations.