When navigating a space as large as climate tech, it's important to have frameworks to help you understand the space and place companies.
One framework that we like is the 2-axis climate tech talent & capital mind map put out by MCJ Collective.
You can use the navigation buttons on the iframe below to view the framework or click here to view it in a new tab.
The X-axis is from Fred Wilson's framework of whether the company's work is moving bits (leveraging software) vs atoms (leveraging hardware) or allowing bits to coordinate atoms (software enabling hardware).
The Y-axis blends heuristics from Project Drawdown, John Doerr's Speed + Scale, Bill Gates' How to Avoid a Climate Disaster by mapping out different ways to think about the end goal achieved with a solution.
ClimateTechList companies sit in the left two columns of the framework. Because ClimateTechList companies must be companies where software is mission critical, they are either "moving bits" or in the "bits coordinating atoms" category.
A couple of ways you may use this framework in your software engineering climate tech job search:
- When encountering new companies, think about whether they are moving bits, moving atoms, or bits coordinating atoms. If they are moving atoms primarily, yet you come from a pure software/tech background, learn clearly about how your role as a software engineer will be different.
- When encountering new companies, in addition to thinking about their verticals, think about whether they are engaged in carbon/GHG stock reduction, flow reduction, adaptation, or enablement.
- You can use each group of companies as a jumping-off point to research similar companies.
We have a few other frameworks that we will write about soon (especially the Drawdown Solutions Framework), stay tuned.
This framework was originally written about in this MCJ Collective post.
I, Steven Zhang, was one of the contributors, along with Charles Yang, Lily Bernicker, Mark Wong, Nicholas Adeyi, Shilpika Gautam, Yin Lu, Zach Stein,