A world to undertake: discover our 2020-2021 year book

This yearbook is a retrospective exercise; it offers a glimpse of our achievements over the past months. It also has an aim for the period ahead: to call upon the players of our future cities and infrastructures, inviting them to contribute to the demanding but thrilling adventure which Leonard has set in motion.

Nothing went as planned in 2020. 

A few weeks before the start of 2020, we invited you to discover with us the mechanics of disruption. We did not anticipate what disruptions the coronavirus would introduce into the daily lives of billions of human beings and in the practice of those who design, build and operate cities and infrastructure. Rupture. The word has been said. And it is with the concepts of rupture, continuity and transformation that we must decipher the challenges of the start of 2021, above all by avoiding hasty conclusions. Spotting ruptures to identify what will definitely belong to the pre-pandemic world, to use the expression coined in the astonishment of the first weeks of lookdown. Tracking continuity because the challenges we face remain: climate and environmental imperatives, social inequalities, global migration to metropolitan areas, etc. Anticipating transformation because this is often the virtue of crises: they accelerate the mutations underway. Just think of remote working, the ethics of care, going beyond the nature/civilization duality, the rise of digital technology in all aspects of our economies.

No hasty conclusion indeed – because we come up against the limits of predictability – but a stance resolutely turned towards action.

” I hate those fearful hearts which, by dint of thinking of what may happen, never undertake anything . ” — Molière

Entrepreneurship is the project that we must ensure to animate, to nurture. To undertake to get out of the crisis, to undertake to innovate, to undertake to prepare for the long term.

We have gathered in this volume an overview of Leonard’s activity during the year 2020. Disrupted by the health crisis, this year has pushed us to adapt to continue to fulfill our missions: watching how cities, infrastructure and their businesses are transforming, looking forward to shaping these trends into scenarios that outline opportunities for the decade to come, innovating to support entrepreneurs in their ambitions to develop new solutions.

Can we still be optimistic after the past few months? I think so.

The two hundred thinkers, experts and entrepreneurs Leonard gathered throughout this year are inviting us to listen to their thoughts and their convictions. Their visions are suggesting new ways of building and taking up the challenges of tomorrow’s cities and infrastructure. The forty-four innovative projects that we have selected from some three hundred and fifty applications to join our four acceleration programmes demonstrate the ability of economic players to provide innovative solutions to meet our transformation challenges.

The coming months remain uncertain; they require humility and commitment. Nevertheless, I am looking forward to this mobilization, this optimism to open up perspectives and initiate actions.

Let’s read these pages with this state of mind.

— Julien Villalongue, Managing Director, Leonard

Our 2020 year book summary

1. Accelerations

  • Stories of entrepreneurs
  • Intrapreneurs Programme
  • SEED Programme
  • CATALYST Programme
  • Five questions to Guillaume Bazouin, Head of acceleration programmes
  • AI Programme
  • Rendez-vous in Berlin

2. Transformations

  • Not lost in transition
  • Leonard, foresight workroom
  • Studies, collections, trend analyses: a close look at the future
  • Climate resilience and architects: a vision
  • Building Beyond & “30 minutes for tomorrow”: a very inspired community

3. Analysis

  • Eleven words that tell us about the future
  • Mobility: the key to the country
  • Natural ecosystems within cities
  • Remote: the art of working from home
  • Clean Tech and Climate Tech: the moment of truth
  • Electric mobility, at last
  • Resilience: fostering infrastructure flexibility

4. Aspirations

What do we do?

The VINCI Group created Leonard to tackle the challenges posed by the transformation of regions and lifestyles. Our goal is to unite a community of key stakeholders in order to build the city of the future together.