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What has been your experience to date?

I have over 25 years’ consulting experience working with companies and organisations on sustainability/ESG projects . After completing my MSc in Environmental Technology at Imperial College I joined the Environment & Risk practice at Arthur D Little (ADL), working with clients on mainly environmental management projects. A move to the management consulting practice allowed me to focus more on sustainability and business case projects, which gave me a real taste for helping companies to start to see sustainability as a business opportunity rather than a cost. After some time in Australia running the research team for an ethical investment fund, I returned to consulting in the UK working for Strategy & (formerly Booz Allen Hamilton) and as an advisor on clean technologies and sustainability for Bain & Company before making the leap fully to independent consulting. 

Along the way I’ve created a couple of start-ups including a social enterprise focussing on improving community health and well-being. A great opportunity to put into practice the pillars of sustainability.

What motivated you to pursue a career in sustainability?

I remember when I was at university, the discussion around environmental issues tended to be around the negative – acid rain,  deforestation in the Amazon etc.. all very real devastating environmental issues but the narrative on safeguarding the environment focussed on the costs and legal compliance. I wanted to find a different way of looking at the issues and work with companies to focus more on the opportunities to create new ways of working, products and services that would create positive environmental impacts and revenue streams.

What projects have you enjoyed working on and why?

Gosh so many! I think one of my favourite pieces of work was for an energy company around 20 years ago and it was a groundbreaking piece of work where we created their business case for sustainability. They were one of the first energy companies to start to think about sustainability as more than a cost but as an opportunity. It set out the path for change, increasing awareness about sustainability and what we now refer to as the energy transition.

What sustainability issues do you feel are most pressing in our sector?

We can’t deny the pressing importance of managing our carbon emissions, but I don’t think one issue is more important than another, they are all equally important, the lenses may just be different depending on the industry, geography or group you are engaging with. 

How do you ensure that sustainability initiatives are both impactful and feasible for a company?

I think this is going to vary depending on the company, but we have to move away from viewing sustainability as separate tick box activities. Only then can we start to see these initiatives as leading to positive change.

What book have you read most recently?

Coco Chanel – the legend and the life by Justine Picardie

In many ways a book about female empowerment and how one woman has changed the face of fashion not only in her lifetime but beyond. 

Caroline joined Oxford HR in 2024 as an Advisor on Sustainability/ESG. Caroline has over 25 year’s experience in the ESG space, working with companies and organisations to improve their ESG and overall business performance. She has worked with leading consulting firms to advise clients on ESG strategy and management globally and has a particular interest in how ESG can be used to enhance and improve company performance and profitability.

Caroline has an MSc in Environmental Technology from Imperial College London and a BA (hons) in Geography and Economics from The London School of Economics and Political Science, London.

Caroline is a keen entrepreneur and has launched a number of businesses in the health and wellbeing sector.