Walking in Springtime

Since the beginning of the year I walk 1 hour and 20 minutes to the office, and back. Today was bright sunny day and crispy cold, wonderful combination for reflection. When the sun shines in Amsterdam, it is the “real Disneyland”.

Previously, I would bike everywhere, but my son’s bike was stolen so I lent him mine. Now I have gotten used to waking everywhere. It is great exercise. Now my pants actually close without a shoe horn, and my belt is tightened to the last hole. This would have been impossible, last month, without bursting a blood vessel.  So the time to reflect and enjoy the beauty that is Amsterdam, sometimes catch up on podcasts, and lose weight have been a great bonus for not having a bicycle.

TBLI Foundation target 100.000 euros

We launched TBLI Foundation in 2014, to help us scale up our educational outreach on ESG and Impact Investing. I want to thank all of you who have made a donation to TBLI Foundation, some of whom want to remain anonymous. With these contributions, we have been able to double the number of events, partner with business schools and start preparing for further dissemination of our content to a wider audience. I would like to ask for your help in allowing us to reach our goal of Euros 100.000. This will allow us to  to increase our educational outreach and start the process of putting all of our content online, including our network.

Support TBLI Foundation

Those who make a donation will be clearly recognized as TBLI Founder, TBLI Patron, TBLI Supporter, or TBLI Friend.

Levels of Giving:

• TBLI Founder- Euros 5000+
• TBLI Patron- Euros 2500+ up to 5000
• TBLI Supporter-Euros 1000+ up to 2500
• TBLI Friend- Euros 250 up to 1000
Donations accepted via paypal, here

-Donations via Bank Transfer:

Stichting TBLI
Herengracht 450
1017 CA Amsterdam
ING Iban : NL58 INGB 0006 3272 56
Bank nr 6327256


A dear friend of mine, Yvonne Li is founder and CEO of the International China Ageing Industry Association(ICAIA). ICAIA is a premier B2B industry association servicing Chinese and overseas stakeholders committed to building a vibrant Elderly Care industry ecosystem in China.

She is organising a forum in Austin, Texas,  March 30, 2015, and has offered our network  5 complimentary tickets to their forum, for impact investors who may be keen to take part to transform China’s 200 million persons elderly market. Please contact Clinton Wong at cwong@icaia.net for taking up this opportunity or for more enquiries.


  • Gain a thorough understanding of key industry issues, challenges, and opportunities for China’s nascent elderly care
  • Meet, network and collaborate with the most relevant Chinese elderly care professionals, both from China and the US.
  • Identify relevant market needs to form strategic partnership or investment opportunities in China
  • Meet Chinese private and institutional investors who are interested in investing in the US elderly care industry
  • An assessment of current senior housing market conditions and cycles in China
  • Institutional portfolios with a senior living / elderly care theme
  • Technology and innovation – what does the eHealth, smart elderly care technology landscape look like in China
  • Learn about China supply and demand trends
  • How to navigate a web of governmental policies to introduce best practices and operating model for institutional care in China
  • Lessons learnt on crafting successful and sustainable US-China business partnerships

Letters to TBLI

A Lecture with an Impact

Impact investing, ESG investing, scaling up businesses in emerging markets and social entrepreneurship management have been some of the burning topics on the minds of 20 young professionals gathered from all over the world at the Impact Hub in Amsterdam this February, all part of the Frontier Market Scout program organized by the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey.

One of the most insightful and straight-forward sessions we had was the open-table discussion with Mr. Robert Rubinstein, social entrepreneur, the CEO and driving force behind the TBLI Group. He is not only engaged in educating the financial sector and savvy investors about the benefits of sustainable investments, but is also a guest speaker and lecturer on topics related to ESG and impact investing, sharing powerful stories from his own life and always committed to pointing to the essential, underlying truth behind many of the trends within the sustainable investing industry.

In a nutshell, Robert brought to our class his own diverse knowledge of the sector and life experiences. His contribution managed to energize us to seek more from ourselves and from our future career goals, looking for what truly makes us passionate and having the grit and dedication to follow our hearts.

Beyond discussions about the impact investing sector overall being worth $46 billion in 2014 and growth estimates of 20% compared to 2013, beyond complex, long-term strategies to finance and scale social businesses, one of our main take-away lessons from the two weeks at the Impact Hub in Amsterdam has been meeting the actual doers, people who not only praise the worthiness of the impact investing sector, but who actually walk the talk and invest time and effort into it. Robert Rubinstein’s contagious drive is a perfect proof that where there’s a will, there’s a way. His TBLI Conferences and up-coming leading sector educational initiatives through the TBLI Group are changing the way investors look at sustainability and impact and setting the stage for future growth in the sector.

For those students, academics and professionals interested to listen to a talk given by Robert, he will also be holding a colloquium on “Commercializing Impact Investing” at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey in California this April, 23rd.

Alina Cristina Buteica

TBLI Nostalgia-Amsterdam, Speaking Engagements, Foundation

TBLI CONFERENCE Europe 2003 was held in Amsterdam at the beautiful Beurs van Berlage. If you look at the program, TBLI CONFERENCE EUROPE 2003, you will recognise many of the thought leaders in the ESG and Impact Investing. I particularly enjoyed Michael Braungart, Cradle to Cradle: Design for the Triple Top Line, and Robert Monks, CEO, Shareholder Activist and Corporate Governance Advisor – RAGM, and Hirotoshi Kunitomo  from METI – Ministry Of The Economy, Trade And Industry. 

I found an old testimonial film from the archives, which was nice to watch. Quality not very good, so I apologise for that.

TBLI Testimonials

Speaking engagements

Busy year this year. I have been asked to speak at several events. Hope to see you there or at TBLI

Interview Real Leaders

Creating Global Well-being Through The Economy



Check out Freakonomics Podcast on the Norwegian Sovereign Wealth Fund. How it got to be so big ($850 billion) and the dilemmas of trying to invest in sustainability, when most of the money comes from oil and gas revenue.

Carbon Tax Success, and $ 21 Trillion in Assets

TBLI Nostalgia

In 2006, we held our first event in Asia. Bangkok, Thailand would be the host for TBLI CONFERENCE ASIA for the next 3 years. We really enjoyed hosting it there. Wonderful people, fantastic support, lots of fun, great food, beautiful Thai musicians, oh yeah almost forgot. The programs and networking were first class. I particularly enjoyed Piyasvasti Amranand, Minister of Energy and Senator Mechai Viravaidya, Founder and Chairman – Population And Community Development Association – Thailand.

The entire event was spectacular as you can see from the video and photos. I got quite emotional watching the film, as it brought back wonderful memories convening TBLI all these years. Many friendships were started and communities were forged. I was certainly younger. We even had a journalist from Dutch Radio, VPRO interviewing the various thought leaders.

Below is a video with impressions of that first TBLI in Asia. You can find more impressions of other TBLI CONFERENCES, maybe you will find a photo of yourself or friend. I apologise for the bad quality, but I was going through the archives and came across this video. Sorry if  you are not a Joni Mitchell fan, but I am.

Please join us in Singapore for TBLI CONFERENCE ASIA April 29-30 to create new memories.

Thailand 4 Thailand 5 Thailand 3 Thailand 1


How to adopt a Winning Carbon Tax. British Columbia has shown that it can work. Good reading.  British Columbia, Canada, implemented a carbon tax in 1998 and was a success. What can we learn from them.

ESG investments world wide reached $ 21 Trillion, according to Gloabal Sustainable Investment Review 2014, compiled by Global Sustainable Investment Alliance. The report covers all the different strategies.

  • Negative/exclusionary screening,
  • Positive/best-in-class screening,
  • Norms-based screening,
  • Integration of ESG factors,
  • Sustainability-themed investing,
  • Impact/community investing, and
  • Corporate engagement and shareholder action.


Lester Brown to Retire.

I received the announcement that the Earth Policy Institute plans to cease operations. Very sad, but understandable. The founder, Lester Brown will retire in June 2015. Lester was a hero of mine and a great champion of bringing sense to an economic system that was self-destructive. His statistical analysis were essential to understanding the destructive forces at play as well as the clear profitable solutions that was being offered. If you are not familiar with him or the Earth Policy Institute, go visit their website.

Lester Brown surely comes to mind when one reads Man in the Arena by Theodore Roosevelt.

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”

Excerpt from Theodore Roosevelt’s speech “Citizenship In A Republic”delivered at the Sorbonne, in Paris, France on 23 April, 1910

Getting out of ghetto is successful!

According to multiple, peer-reviewed studies, simply being in an open network instead of a closed one is the best predictor of career success. Michael Simmons, Forbes ENTREPRENEURS 

University of Chicago research shows that the social network you create offers competitive advantage for growth and innovation

26th TBLI CONFERENCE will be held in  Chicago, January 23, 2015

I am looking forward to greeting our speakers and guests at TBLI CONFERENCE@BOOTH/KELLOGG 2015 this week in Chicago. Keynote is Irene Pritzker, President of IDP Foundation

Can’t make it or want to support our capacity building on ESG and Impact Investing, make a charitable donation to TBLI Foundation.