The SDG Digital Transformation and Sustainability Solutions Lab

Pegasus Capital Advisors is excited to announce a new upcoming initiative, The SDG Digital Transformation and Sustainability Solutions Lab, which will engage renowned academic experts to unlock innovative approaches and insights aimed at accelerating the delivery of the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals through tech and data science innovation. This Lab aims to bring together several top technology minds from Silicon Valley including Stanford and U.C. Berkeley communities, with impact entrepreneurs working on the ground, grassroots communities, NGOs, and local and regional governments to advance and measure impact. In addition to leveraging technology and data analysis to address local challenges, round table conversations will be held to ideate and co-create digital and sustainability policy.

This new initiative comes in the context of Pegasus’ mandate to mobilize transformative impact investments and innovative solutions aimed at improving the lives and livelihoods of the people and communities most affected by climate change and biodiversity loss. A key goal of this initiative is to engage with local partners at the country level including governments and NGOs to understand local challenges and to co-ideate and co-design digital solutions to advance the SDGs. Working in close collaboration with other multilateral and bilateral development institutions, Pegasus manages two climate funds anchored by the Green Climate Fund, covering multiple geographies and sectors in the Global South. This initiative will help catalyze innovative sustainability solutions and new ways of measuring impact with Pegasus and its various partners including Green Climate Fund, Africa Adaptation Initiative, UNDP, Gold Standard, IICA, Forum for Farmers and Food Security among others.

Leading the initiative are:

Initiative Founding Co-Chairs

Radhika is Co-President of Stanford Angels & Entrepreneurs and Initiative Founding Co-Chair of the SDG Digital Transformation & Sustainability Solutions Lab. She is a tech-impact investor and deep believer in digital innovation & policy’s role in accelerating the SDGs. She is a Fellow and Chair of the Tech & Innovation Advisory Group at the Center for Human Rights & International Justice at Stanford and on the board of Center for Effective Global Action, U.C. Berkeley. Influenced by Gandhian philosophy, she cares deeply about sustainability, human dignity, women’s empowerment, racial-ethnic and socio-economic justice. She is Founding Co-Chair of UN Joint SDG Fund Breakthrough Alliance, advisor to the SDG Philanthropy Platform, Impact Experience, Illumen Capital & Benetech. She was a member of the CGD study group Technology,  Comparative Advantage & Development Prospects. She holds a Stanford CS Masters and a Berkeley MBA.

Claudia is cofounder of Stanford Alumni in Sustainability and Initiative Founding Co-Chair of the SDG Digital Transformation and Sustainability Solutions Lab. Claudia has built a career in the luxury retail industry in product marketing and brand management roles at Tiffany & Co. and Estée Lauder as well as at early and mid-stage fashion and jewelry startups. Her work has always intersected sustainability and retail and she continues to be involved in the world of eco-fashion. Claudia holds degrees in International Relations and Psychology from Stanford University.

Mr. Cogut founded Pegasus, a private equity fund, in 1995 and serves as its Chairman and CEO. Through Mr. Cogut’s leadership, Pegasus has focused on sectors influenced by global resource scarcity and the need to combat climate change, as well as on the growth in demands globally for human health and wellness, leading to Pegasus becoming the first U.S. private equity fund manager to be accredited by the Green Climate Fund. In 1990 Mr. Cogut co-founded and was one of the original partners at Apollo Advisors L.P., a position he held for six years preceding the creation of Pegasus. In addition, Mr. Cogut has been an active philanthropist in the fields of improving education, building civil society and championing environmental and health issues. Mr. Cogut currently serves as Chairman of the finance advisory board of the Global Alliance for a Sustainable Planet, a non-profit focused on leveraging private finance for public good in order to achieve sustainable development goals.

In partnership with:

Global Executive Advisory Board

The first-ever White House National Climate Advisor and a former U.S. EPA Administrator, Gina McCarthy is one of the nation’s most respected voices on climate change, the environment, and public health. As head of the Climate Policy Office under President Biden, McCarthy’s leadership led to the most aggressive action on climate in U.S. history, creating new jobs and unprecedented clean energy innovation and investments across the country. Her commitment to bold action across the Biden administration, supported by the climate and clean energy provisions in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and the Inflation Reduction Act, restored U.S. climate leadership on a global stage and put a new U.S. national target to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 50-52 percent below 2005 levels by 2030 within reach.

Academic Faculty Advisory Board

Margot Gerritsen is a Professor [Emerita] at Stanford University in Computational Mathematics and Energy Science and Engineering, and the founder and current Executive Director of Women in Data Science Worldwide. Margot’s expertise is in designing computational tools for a wide range of applications, including energy resources, ocean modeling, sustainability, and data science.

Born and bred in the Netherlands, Margot left the country in 1990 in search of sunnier and hillier places and after some time in Colorado she completed her PhD in Scientific Computing and Computational Mathematics at Stanford in 1996 with a focus on Computational Fluid Dynamics.

Her first academic position was in New Zealand at the University of Auckland. In 2001, Margot returned to Stanford as faculty member in Energy Science and Engineering. From 2010-2018, Margot was the director of ICME, the Institute for Computational and Mathematical Engineering at Stanford, and from 2015 – 2020, the Senior Associate Dean for Educational Initiatives in the School of Earth Sciences. Margot is a Fellow of the international Society of Industrial & Applied Mathematics and holds honorary doctorates from Uppsala University in Sweden and the University of Eindhoven in the Netherlands.

Margot now lives in Bend, Oregon, with her husband Paul and dog Millie. In her spare time, she loves hiking and kayaking, riding bikes and motorcycles with Paul, reading mysteries, gardening, and visiting her son Callum who lives and works in Seattle.

Ato Quayson is the Jean G. and Morris M. Doyle Professor in Interdisciplinary Studies and Professor of English. He studied for his undergraduate degree at the University of Ghana and took his Ph.D. from the University of Cambridge, after which he held a Junior Research Fellowship at Wolfson College, Oxford before returning to Cambridge to become Reader in Commonwealth and Postcolonial Literature in the Faculty of English. He was also Director of the Centre for African Studies and a Fellow of Pembroke College while at Cambridge. Prior to Stanford he was Professor of African and Postcolonial Literature at New York University and Professor of English and inaugural Director of the Centre for Diaspora and Transnational Studies at the University of Toronto. In 2016 he was appointed University Professor at the University of Toronto, the highest distinction that the university can bestow.

Professor Quayson has served as President of the African Studies Association and is an elected Fellow of the Ghana Academy of Arts and Sciences, the Royal Society of Canada, the British Academy, and of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Vaughan Pratt is Professor Emeritus of Computer Science at Stanford University. He obtained a double honours degree in pure mathematics and physics from the University of Sydney, and his Ph.D. from Stanford University under Donald Knuth. He taught at MIT from 1972 to 1980 and subsequently at Stanford University until his retirement in 2000.  After a decade of work on pocket workstations and autonomous vehicles, in 2010 his interests turned to geophysics with a focus on global environmental change.  He has made a number of presentations in this area at the annual fall meetings of the American Geophysical Union.  His current research addresses the limited funds available for slowing the rate of rise of atmospheric CO2, arguing that $80 per ton of CO2 removed from the atmosphere as contemplated by America’s Inflation Reduction Act is too expensive to have any appreciable impact.  His present research is focused on methods focused cost-effectively removing  CO2 from the atmosphere.

Ashish Goel is a Professor of Management Science and Engineering and (by courtesy) Computer Science at Stanford University, and a member of Stanford’s Institute for Computational and Mathematical Engineering. He received his PhD in Computer Science from Stanford in 1999, and was an Assistant Professor of Computer Science at the University of Southern California from 1999 to 2002. His research interests lie in the design, analysis, and applications of algorithms; current application areas of interest include social networks, participatory democracy, Internet commerce, and large scale data processing. Professor Goel is a recipient of an Alfred P. Sloan faculty fellowship (2004-06), a Terman faculty fellowship from Stanford, an NSF Career Award (2002-07), and a Rajeev Motwani mentorship award (2010). He was a co-author on the paper that won the best paper award at WWW 2009, an Edelman Laureate in 2014, a co-winner of the SigEcom Test of Time Award in 2018, and a recipient of the 2023 Distinguished Alumnus Award from IIT Kanpur. Professor Goel was a research fellow and technical advisor at Twitter, Inc. from July 2009 to Aug 2014.  He has also served as a technical advisor to Coinbase Inc, Infosys Inc, and to the Chief Economic Advisor of India.

Vasilis Syrgkanis is an Assistant Professor in Management Science and Engineering and (by courtesy) in Computer Science and Electrical Engineering, in the School of Engineering at Stanford University and a member of the Institute for Computational and Mathematical Engineering. His research interests lie in the areas of machine learning, causal inference, econometrics, online and reinforcement learning, game theory, mechanism design and algorithm design. Until August 2022, he was a Principal Researcher at Microsoft Research, New England, where he was a member of the EconCS and StatsML groups. During his time at Microsoft, he co-led the project on Automated Learning and Intelligence for Causation and Economics (ALICE) and was a co-founder of EconML, an open-source python package for causal machine learning. He received his Ph.D. in Computer Science from Cornell University. His research has received best paper awards at several top tier machine learning and AI conferences (EC, NeurIPS, COLT) and he is the recipient of a 2022 Amazon Research Award and of the 2023 Bodossaki Distinguished Young Scientist award. He has published more than 70 scientific papers and co-authored the book “Applied Causal Inference Powered by ML and AI.”

“The Global Center for Sustainable Digital Finance at Stanford University is looking forward to collaborating on this exciting new initiative and jointly entering new ground with innovative, technology based ways to sustainability.”

Thomas Puschmann, Executive Director of the Global Center for Sustainable Digital Finance by Stanford University, University of Zurich and KAIST

Africa Executive Advisory Committee

Kwaku Addo Sakyi-Addo is strategic communications advisor, Government of Ghana; former Chair, National Communications Authority, & former BBC & Reuters country correspondent. He chairs the board of the Minerals Development Fund, a statutory body responsible for supporting social projects in mining communities, and serves on the Advisory Board to the Minister of Lands and Natural Resources in Ghana. Kwaku is Chair of the Advisory Council of the International Institute for Advanced Studies at the University of Ghana, Legon, and a director of Databank Foundation, the charity arm of Databank Financial Services, Ghana’s pioneer assets management firm. He served as Chief Executive of the Ghana Chamber of Telecommunications from 2011 until early 2017 when he was appointed Chairman of the National Communications Authority, the telecom industry regulator.

Tralance Addy is a co-founder and CEO of Yaro Capital, a newly formed venture capital firm focusing on scalable potential-high-impact enterprises in Sub-Saharan Africa.  He was previously the first executive director of the Stanford Institute for Innovation in Developing Economies (Stanford|SEED). He also is the founder and former President of Plebys International, LLC, a California-based investment and venture management company.  He simultaneously served as CEO of WaterHealth International Inc. (WHI), a Plebys venture whose transformation he led, from a technology offering into a path-breaking company providing access to affordable clean water to more than 5 million people in urban and underserved rural communities in Africa and Asia. He has been recognized for his innovation and philanthropic work and, in 2007, Inc Magazine named him “Do Good Capitalist of the Year.”

Paola is a seasoned strategy, innovation and transformation officer with more than 20 years in the CPG and consulting industries, now focused on value creation, mutual sustainable solutions and the frontiers and resilience of human systems. For the last 4 years, she was the Chief Innovation Officer for Mars, Inc and is well recognized for her fluent ability to bring the outside in, articulating the next generation of needs and tactical solutions, which can be seen throughout her career at Mars, having spent it developing and implementing strategic plans, M&A integration, insights and intelligence analysis, global governance methodology, next generation capabilities, and managing external partnerships, including the United Nations (Food and Agriculture Organization, World Food Programme and World Health Organization), World Bank and African Union. Her current focus is in helping broad acceleration and scale up of Sustainable Development Goals solutions across multiple sectors and stakeholders.

CEO & Founder of Producers Trust, which is building a leading network of agricultural producers and working to build market linkage software to connect value chains more directly and efficiently. The data is being organized to bring greater transparency and visibility to consumers in an effort to connect shared values. As CEO, Keith plays a leadership role in setting the vision, creating the strategic plans, and working to execute all facets of the Producers Market ecosystem including the market linkage platform, StoryBird product, and media entity.