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John Elkington

Co-Founder & Chief Pollinator at Volans (2008 to date), and Co-Founder of SustainAbility (1987-2008) and of Environmental Data Services (ENDS, 1978), John Elkington is a world authority on corporate responsibility and sustainable development.  As long ago as 2004, BusinessWeek described him as “a dean of the corporate responsibility movement for three decades.” His first involvement: raising money for the newly formed World Wildlife Fund (WWF) in 1961, aged 11.

In 2008, The Evening Standard named John among the ‘1000 Most Influential People’ in London, describing him as “a true green business guru,” and as “an evangelist for corporate social and environmental responsibility long before it was fashionable.” In 2009, a CSR International survey of the Top 100 CSR leaders placed John fourth: after Al Gore, Barack Obama and the late Anita Roddick of the Body Shop, and alongside Muhammad Yunus of the Grameen Bank.

John has addressed over 1,000 conferences around the world. He was a Faculty member of the World Economic Forum from 2002-2008. He has served on over 70 boards and advisory boards. He has won awards from the likes of the American Society for Quality, the Rockefeller Foundation, the Skoll Foundation and the United Nations. And he is the author or co-author of 19 books, most recently The Breakthrough Challenge: 10 Ways to Connect Today’s Profits with Tomorrow’s Bottom Line, co-authored with former PUMA CEO Jochen Zeitz, who is now co-chair of The B Team with Sir Richard Branson.

Previous book titles include 1988’s million-selling Green Consumer Guide (co-authored with SustainAbility co-founder Julia Hailes), 1997’s Cannibals with Forks: The Triple Bottom Line of 21st Century Business (the book which brought his triple bottom line concept and agenda to a wider audience) and 2008’s The Power of Unreasonable People: How Social Entrepreneurs Create Markets That Change the World, (Harvard Business School Press), co-authored with Volans co-founder Pamela Hartigan.

John's Who’s Who entry lists his recreations as: “playing with ideas, thinking around corners, conversations with unreasonable people, reading an Alpine range of books (history to science fiction) and business and science magazines, risking life and limb as a London cyclist, catch-it-as-you-can photography, art and design, writing all hours, pre-1944 aircraft, New World wines, 20th century popular music and Johann Strauss II.”

Twitter: @volansjohn

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