Co-Founder and Activist in Residence, B Lab UK, Co-Chair, B Lab’s Global Climate Taskforce, Social Entrepreneur in Residence, Skoll Centre for Social Entrepreneurship, Saïd Business School, University of Oxford and Co-Director, Oxford Climate Emergency Programme.
Charmian believes in the power of business as a force for good and has first-hand experience in what it is like to be an entrepreneur, an intrapreneur and a systempreneur.
Charmian is Co-Founder and Activist in Residence at B Lab UK, where she supports the growth of B Corps across the UK (and beyond) and is Co-Chair of B Lab’s Global Climate Taskforce.
Charmian is committed to helping accelerate the transition to a more regenerative, circular and inclusive economy. In her role as Social Entrepreneur in Residence at the Skoll Centre for Social Entrepreneurship at Oxford University’s Saïd Business School, Charmian is guiding the development of the Regenerative and Circular Economy Lab and designed and teaches a popular MBA course on this subject. Charmian also holds the role of Co-Director for the newly launched Oxford Climate Emergency Programme, has co-taught an Executive MBA course on Systempreneurship: Innovating for Impact, contributed to the core MBA class ‘Capitalism in Debate’ and is a regular tutor in the GOTO programme focused on equipping students with skills and tools to engage in system change.
Linked to this focus on system change, Charmian is actively engaged in exploring ways to mobilise a ‘‘Movement of Movements’ – connecting people and organisations who share a goal relating to the need for deep and transformational levels of change in our economy.
Charmian is a member of the Sustainability Advisory Council at the ICAEW (because she truly believes that accountants will save the world), a member of the ‘Regenerative Business’ working group at the Institute of Directors (IoD), Co-Chair of the BAC’s NetZero Working Group and an Advisory Committee member for GARP’s (Global Association of Risk Professionals) Sustainably and Climate Risk Certificate. She held the role of chair of B Lab UK for 5 years, was a founding trustee to the Future Fit Foundation and was on the UK board of the B Team until 2019.
Charmian’s journey as an entrepreneur began with the creation of Volans, a change agency, co-founded in 2008 with John Elkington and Pamela Hartigan (and the second UK company to certify as a B Corp) where her clients included senior leadership teams from Nike, HP and Allianz. Prior to starting her adventure with the Volans team, Charmian was a consultant at BCG and Chair of the Flavelle Foundation.
She is also co-author of a range of reports and playbooks including; The Phoenix Economy, The Future Quotient, The Corporate Venturing Playbook, The A-Z Guide to Cocktail Careers, The Climate Emergency Playbook for Business and The Climate Justice Playbook Version 1.0.
A proud Canadian, Charmian received her MBA from Harvard Business School and holds a degree in Art History from Queen’s University. She lives in Southwest London with her soulmate and her two wonderful rugby-loving boys. In her spare time, Charmian enjoys hosting ‘Hartigan Dinners’ and participating in open water swimming challenges.
Hon James Shaw
Minister for Climate Change, Associate Minister for the Environment, Government of New Zealand