Finance company takes cue from nature: Business Day



Now this was an inspiring interview! I recently had the chance to interview academic and enrepreneur Idriss Aberkane for Business Day. The following is an extract of the article, but you can read the full thing on the BDlive website.

IMAGINE an economy with no waste and no unemployment, a market in which the supply meets every demand, and commodity exchange makes both parties happier and wealthier.

Academic and entrepreneur Idriss Aberkane argues that this is no fairytale, an economy like this exists and can be found all around us — in nature. Nature, he tells audiences around SA, is a library. Instead of reading its vast stores of knowledge, humanity is burning them. Despite his knack for a sobering metaphor, Aberkane is earnest and upbeat. The French scientist is in the country as a guest of Alexander Forbes, and we meet after he addressed 175 staff members and fellow young scientists as part of their Leading Conversations series.

His topic is biomimicry and innovation in the knowledge economy. Aberkane, 29, is an entrepreneur with three doctoral degrees — in Geopolitics, Applied Neuroergonomics (how neuroscience applies to ergonomics) and Comparative Literature. He is also the co-founder and CEO of neuroergonomic gaming company Scanderia, and cofounder and board member of Eirin International, an interest-free microcredit company based in Senegal.

The link between his diverse fields of study is a focus on knowledge itself: the geopolitics of knowledge, how neuroscience can change the knowledge economy and comparing western and eastern literature, “concluding that humanity is one big brain (left brain and right brain”.

“The unity of my fields of interest is my life. To me, knowledge is food, and the moment you realise that education is an all-you-can-eat knowledge buffet, you see it differently. I eat a lot. I like knowledge gastronomy; I like fusion cuisine,” he says.

Here’s the link to the full article again:

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