It is common advice to do professionally what you love, and many tech professionals love outdoor recreation. They care deeply about the future of our planet, its environment, and ability to support the recreation they love. Unfortunately, too few tech professionals have the opportunity to use their skills to advance their love for outdoor recreation. They’re more likely to work in e-commerce, a heavy contributor to environmental decline through mass consumption of goods with negative long term, environmental impacts. Or perhaps they work in adtech, advancing the reach of dozens of industries that are at odds with their personal feelings about what is good for the planet and humanity’s future. Their adtech work is likely to increase the consumption economy, whitewash the impact of extraction industries like mining and oil, or more generally – support companies the singular goal of increasing profits at absolutely any cost.
Too often those costs are a decline in the spaces where we recreate. It’s a forest unsustainably logged, or a ski hill choking on CO2 at low elevation, no longer cold enough to support a healthy snowpack. It’s the landfill that would otherwise have been a lush park or trail system. These are costs unwillingly born by the lot of humanity. They’re costs incurred as a direct result of good people being successful in their jobs, and unfortunately unaware of alternative opportunities to advance their love for outdoor recreation instead.
This is not to say that all e-commerce and adtech is bad. There are many environmentally focused companies with an e-commerce presence that do great work to advance outdoor recreation. Take Patagonia, REI, or Cotopaxi for example. These companies understand their place in a world where they both provide the gear with which to recreate, and support programs to offset the environmental impact of providing that gear.
The purpose of Outside Careers is to serve the tech professionals who want to use their skills for good; for the people who want to work a little bit closer to where they play.
These are the humble beginnings toward that goal. We hope you’ll join us and follow along by, for now, simply subscribing to our newsletter.