GovInsider’s annual flagship event, the Festival of Innovation, aims to dive deep into the innovations that have not just kept government agencies afloat, but have helped create ripples of impact across the finance, sustainability, design, and healthcare sectors. This year, the in-person event will be taking place from 13 to 14 July 2022 at Raffles City Convention Centre, and it will be free for public sector officials.

Joining us on the How government agencies can decarbonise panel is Mr Syed Mubarak, Head of ESG Sub-Committee, Smart Cities Network. Mr Syed is a sustainability veteran with over 30 years of experience, and a member of the Carbon Working Group of the Sustainable Energy Association of Singapore (SEAS).

He has delivered more than 300 sustainability projects in Asia to realise carbon reduction, waste minimisation, and community engagement for sustainable living, and is passionate about embracing Web 3.0 and blockchain technologies in the areas of ESG, green financing, and carbon management.

Tell us more about you! Which organisation are you from and what do you do? 

Myself being in sustainability, ESG, engineering and digitalisation for over 30 years to enable transformation for businesses to be sustainable by adopting low carbon technologies, process improvement and behaviour change in realising triple-bottom-line benefits – People, Planet, Profit with Purpose.

I have held senior leadership positions across various organisations in Asia and led diverse groups of teams, overseen large-scale operations and delivered multi-million-dollar projects on commercial, industrial, hospitality and corporate real estate assets.

I have driven green initiatives by raising multi-million dollars in funding that yielded CO2 reduction, water conservation, waste minimisation, cost savings as well as recognition across international bodies.

Presently, I am the Vice President, Sustainability & Technology at EPS Singapore to oversee advisory, consulting and green solution delivery services including deep tech commercialisation.

Can you share the most fulfilling or meaningful project you were involved in recently? 

During the Covid-19 pandemic, I had the opportunity to provide advisory and mentorship to an energy start-up in deploying IOT-based Digital Energy Management Solution to several SMEs across market segments like manufacturing, food production & storage, precision engineering, built environment and so on.

This is definitely a most fulfilling project on three fronts – helping SMEs with the fundamental needs of data visualisation and opportunities to reduce cost & carbon, accelerating project execution for the start-up company through my years of experience and capacity building through sharing my skills & knowledge to the young engineers.

What is an innovative project in government that you were most excited about this past year? 

Definitely, the pandemic has opened up several opportunities as well as enabled new world order where either government or corporations have embraced such a change – be it frontier digital technology adoption, flexible working standards and upskilling programs to the current and future trends. This could be enabling blockchain adoption, digital currency, funding allocation for incubation/start-ups to innovate and accelerate, and so on.

What is a new frontier that you believe governments today should explore further, and how do you think it can change the way governments work or help you better serve citizens? 

At the present moment, several countries are setting strategies and targeted action plans by aligning with UN Sustainable Development Goals to improve the quality of life for citizens. I believe that pace of such transformation needs to be enhanced through possible adoption of digital transformation, improving processes and accelerating decarbonisation pathways to build a sustainable environment for now and future generations to come.

What does the government of the future look like to you? 

Having a collaborative engagement model where various stakeholders are given equal opportunities to share their ideas in building the community for good. Digital transformation with Web 3.0 could be an enabler for governments to achieve such a human-centred future.

Who or what inspires you?

I always believe that you don’t need to look out for inspiration – rather, it is inside-out. My mom and dad are the first sources of inspiration for me, and they taught me the importance of doing the right thing, hard work, persistence, determination and helping others. Equally, my wife and daughter are inspirations to be creative, go the extra mile, and learn new things. People working with me throughout life have opened up inspiration on many fronts on doing good for social and environmental causes.

“Be The Change You Wish To See In The World” – Mahatma Gandhi

Hear more from Mr Syed Mubarak on how governments can take the lead to steer their countries toward decarbonation, as well as from other government leaders on how they are pushing the boundaries of innovation at the Festival of Innovation, happening on 13 – 14 July. Register now!