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(Part 2) Virtuous Consumption: When malls and small businesses do good

by The Middle East Council of Shopping Centres & Retailers
August 6th 2020

This is Part 2 of our last week's episode on Virtuous Consumption!

To promote the well-being for residents, lets explore how shopping centers and small and ... More

Uh huh. Welcome back to the voice of the band Podcast by the Middle East Council of Shopping Centers and Retailers. The Middle East and North Africa is an ever changing environment. A living organism on the needs and wants of the society is constantly grows and involves. A lot of initiatives have been made to accommodate these needs, such as parks, hospitals, education, retail and much more. Today will concentrate on citizens and residents centered developments that actually builds a community. But what does it take to really build the community? This is part two of virtuous consumption when most in small businesses do good gowns. Choco CEO and founder of course societies. If you haven't listened yet, part one quickly go back border now and start with the first part of this episode. And so being able to, like influence local businesses in the region to follow similar

goals would be is extremely powerful. So I feel like like the Mina region is already extremely like fertile ground to really push forward thinking in terms of environmentally safe building and development using existing nable materials, we all know that the world needs to see how these practices they need a leader to be there and you know, to benchmark from yes and also to see that actually, it yields, um, revenues. Yes, to actually realize that they can actually make a revenue out of doing something good for the community. Well, and also it's it's more sustainable. You have a healthy ecosystem, you will just increase people's purchasing power. And you also ensure that individual able to come to your store spend money at your store and have and are coming back to your store. Continuity. Exactly. That's what's important. Yes, because you won't be creating a retail space, for example

, just to survive for about 25 years, right? You wanted to be there for 1000 years or even more, right to be there for what you want to be relevant. You wanna keep your relevancy, you know, and you want responding to the need and the demand of your community. We know that Democratic are changing. We knows our tastes are changing, and we tell centers need to be aware in these changing needs. It's interesting, because fashion, you know, the fashion industry as his double role. In the one hand, it's set trends right right, but on the other end, it had to respond. You know, Thio new social factors that shift consumer's tastes. It's a trigger. It's a trigger to want more into a nice balance. So, like beyond fashion, how can the space that sell fashion can also contribute to enhancing good behaviors, not only in consumers

, for them to be more conscious about how their consumption affect the environment, how like stores can allow them thio find employment Local is gonna be developing in general as we recovered before, So they're here in Dubai. In particular, there's 22% local community, and then the rest of the 78% are expats. So there's 600 nationalities. There's that are all living together, and each have their own cultures and all that each have their own preferences. So there are many ways, and there's many mixes on how to do it. What do you think would be relevant for a community like that to be built? What do you think would be relevant for communities here and Dubai to make their society even better and even more accommodating? That's a very good question and a very big question. I'm not sure that I have all the answers. Um, it's a question that I'm asking myself that I mentioned we live in a world that are like increasingly prayer list. And it is our duty

a society, builders to ensure that the structure that we're building a responsive to the needs of these diverse communities and to create spaces where everyone can learn about each other, like be tolerant with one another and for everyone to feel safe and included without having to erase their own cultures and identity. I think that ensuring that people don't have to erase who they are he's very, very is extremely important now. To be honest, I am very new to the U. S s, so I wouldn't feel comfortable giving you an answer for this specific space. As I mentioned, we don't put the societies, and my personal philosophy is not to come in and impose, um, some solution in some ideas. Um, but more so also toe leverage, collective intelligence, understanding the need and then, like encourage individual and a company individual in coming up with solutions for themselves. Eso I I believe that Dubai, given this plurality of communities, presents

a beautiful opportunities to actually learn from mistakes that have been done in different societies and not reproducing them. As I mentioned. To begin with, you seem to be going in the right direction with your Ministry of Tolerance, your Ministry of Happiness and your Ministry of Possibilities. So there seems to be an emphasis on being very intentional, understanding the needs, you know, of different communities. Do you think it's worth it? You know, of course, a X societies are for people to leave in the best way possible, especially the most vulnerable members of society to live in a way to live in a space that promote their well being. So it is extremely important to invest in these areas. I don't think that you can, like, create sustainable policies like health policies, education policies. It could have been development policies or infrastructure. If the need of individual is that at the core of your of your strategy

, think about it. Transportation is meant for individual to access resources, right? It's meant for resource is like raw material or material in general, to have access to, like be able to get to the into the hands of people to be of service off people. Health care system is meant for people to be healthy. Education is meant for people to be educated and to be able to experience and fulfill their best potential. And the private sector is meant to create an economy that everyone can benefit from all correlated to each other. Exactly. And so for me, what's interesting is looking as how moles you know and retail center are part of this broader ecosystem. And what is their role in ensuring they are promoting themselves, the well being of their surrounding communities? And there are many ways to do that Give us some examples in a perspective, off a shopping mall. So as I mentioned before, like, then again, I think that it's a broader conversation

. There's so many different possibilities. We use design, thinking and participatory design that coulda so we engage different stakeholders and users in the generation of ideas. But what comes to mind is a dimension before, in terms of material for the construction of mole and retail centers that are sustainable, Dubai sensibilities away in the use of solar panels to power their mole and there many different possibilities to using a sicko materials. I think that also, for example, mole can be a space for education. You have a chance to bring together a lot of people, usually people coming from many different socio economic background in many different culture. How can mold shopping mall become a space for education where individual can learn about each other's culture? How can people can learn about financial literacy, for example, how can like through the experience of the space and the design of the space people can actually like, commit with one another in a Safeway and exchange

ideas? How can Then again, for me, it's extremely important, especially like in the context of New York and North America and Europe. How can shopping malls and sure that they are employing, um, local workforce? How can they bring individual who might be, um, underemployed, providing potential for a probability for training within the center? That can be like a specific store, but that can be, you know, in in different areas of the mola. Mola has, like, needs a lot of very diverse workforce. There's a lot of exactly invent also in terms of like architecture er, in terms of planning. Construction s exactly so in the user experience, I'm really relieved that to see someone that is engaged, actively engaged and, you know, I could see the passion on how to develop the community more. Yes. And also, you know, like my pleasure. And if I can have another pressure point is

that the fashion industry now is being revolution allies because they've been a little bit about their practices. A to each type of the value chain, you know, from manufacturing of government for, like, disrupting local economies and others areas. So I'm it would be interesting to see how shopping malls and retail centers you can prove You can actually really pressure, you know, toe incentivize the fashion industry and designers to be more conscious about their practices. So, yeah, so meetings like that, if you look at the value chain and the development of the life cycle of a garment distribution channel, such as like shopping malls and stores, a large role in the success of a brand, and so how can a s. So I think that for me, what is

an interesting question is for shopping malls and stores to think How can positive impact on individual yield positive revenues and the other way around. That's a very good question that I think everyone, all the listeners and all the members of EMI CSC MNCs or should think about. Yes, I think that association of this amazing power to protect knowledge, sharing for transformation of entire entire industry yes, that's that's what to buy us all about in the last few years. Dubai, as I said, to bias and ever changing community ever changing. It's like a living organism where it always changes, and it's a new organism. And that's why it's wonderful, because it's a young country and it means that it has so many like possibilities, so many possibilities and everybody so engaged to those possibilities they

wanted. They really want that change, you know, to make it better. So it's the perfect place to, you know, to introduce concepts like that on. And as we're speaking, you know, I'm thinking out loud, um, in terms of like a different type of impact that spaces can have. But I think that also, um, access, so ensuring that like your store or your shopping mall are inviting toe all that actually like that you do not attract only one demographic, but many that people feel included in that your space is inviting toe. All is also a beautiful opportunity. So a good mix off tenants or let's say F e. C s or entertainment or anything basically inside the mall that will attract footfall in different demographics like, yes, every culture. As you mentioned here, you have so many different communities that are represented having a way, which I'm sure that you're already doing and thinking of it but the world. And again, I'm sure that you're doing that. But the world needs to see how you do how you do it so you can

be implemented in different places. How can people from many different culture are comfortable? You know, sharing an experience within a specific space. Gallons. Thank you so much. Incredible. Oh, would you look at the time Time flies So fast, Guns. It has been a pleasure doing this podcast with you. Thanks for sharing us all your valuable insights and sort of got the short. I do hope we can see each other very soon again. Yes. Thank you very much for having me. Perhaps at a later time. Once you come back here. We do have events and that it would be a pleasure. If you could meet our members and the whole network off the BCS. I would be happy. I would be very happy to countries with your members throughout the world. Absolutely. Thank you very much. Thank you.

(Part 2) Virtuous Consumption: When malls and small businesses do good
(Part 2) Virtuous Consumption: When malls and small businesses do good
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