Experts from around the globe
Founder and Director
Jeffrey established Zest Associates to pair sustainability with prosperity, bringing together a smart, passionate, international team with deep expertise to help companies and governments thrive in the low carbon economy. With 18 years' experience that cuts across sustainability strategy, climate policy, clean tech innovation and green finance, Jeffrey recognises that durable change happens in the intersections of different disciplines. Jeffrey founded Beyond C, a UK climate consultancy, and Terra Power, an R&D clean technology start-up that couples biogas with land remediation. He was instrumental in establishing a public-private partnership Venture Capital fund for clean tech innovators now valued at £100-million, helped establish a UK Renewable Energy Centre of Excellence, and designed and launched the Offshore Wind Innovation Hub. He has shaped the innovation strategy of utilities in the UK and Brazil, and worked extensively through global embassy and trade networks to develop effective climate and energy policy. Jeffrey is a dual citizen of Canada and the UK, holds a BA Combined Honours in Economics and Psychology from Carleton University, Canada and an MSc Environmental Change & Management from Oxford University.
Ewa focuses on climate change, energy transitions and energy policy, sustainable food and agriculture systems, as well as assessing climate-related financial risks and opportunities. For nearly 20 years, she has worked with stakeholders to shape countries' energy futures, resilient cities strategies, and corporate positioning to meet long-term future energy demand while reducing to net zero carbon emissions. Ewa was Chief Operating Officer of Royal Dutch Shell Scenarios, led Shell’s Energy Transitions Programme Office, and has led Mergers & Acquisitions deals ranging from $50-million to $10-billion in China, Russia, Iraq, Southeast Asia and East Africa. She has on-the-ground experience with agriculture and land use projects in Southeast Asia (palm oil biofuels), South America (sugar cane biofuels), Australia and Canada (soil carbon sequestration). She is fluent in Polish and English and holds Executive Education credentials from Oxford University Saïd Business School and the University of Cambridge, an MBA from Western Michigan University in the USA, and BSc in Economics from the Poznań University of Economics, Poland.
Dominic's mission is to build solutions that protect natural resources, strengthen economies, and develop community climate resilience. Through public policy analysis and scientific inquiry, he specialises in water resources, coastal management, and climate adaptation. Dominic managed a national coastal wetlands conservation programme for the United States Environmental Protection Agency where he mobilised an interagency coalition to reduce and reverse coastal wetland loss through policy and management approaches. He has extensive experience with the regulatory aspects of water resource management, where he coordinated 300 individual restoration, infrastructure, and mitigation projects for the United States Army Corps of Engineers. Dominic supports UNEP's Sustainable Infrastructure Partnership, leading their efforts to integrate nature-based solutions into national infrastructure planning and development agendas. He holds a B.S. in Environmental Policy Analysis and Planning from the University of California, Davis and a Master of Public Policy from Duke University's Sanford School of Public Policy.
Alison is an experienced and pragmatic strategy consultant, with an international track record of success commercialising innovations and developing new ventures in the cleantech sector. She has spent her career delivering strategic insights and commercial development support to new ventures and growth-phase businesses, as well as public sector clients looking to develop and evaluate innovation support programmes. With a background in management consultancy, she subsequently worked directly in several new start-up businesses and then ran her own successful innovation consultancy business for 15 years. As a result, she has variously acted as Interim MD, Non Executive Director, mentor and consultant to more than 100 start-ups and SMEs, and provided advisory services to more than 30 regional, national and international agencies. Over the past 25 years she has developed an extensive network of contacts in the cleantech sector and a deep knowledge of technology commercialisation and the associated social, business and policy drivers. Alison is a UK citizen and holds an MSc in Water and Wastewater Treatment Technology from Cranfield University and a BSc (Hons) 1st Class in Natural Environmental Science from the University of Sheffield.
Inka specialises in helping infrastructure stakeholders practically think through their gender equality and social inclusion challenges and opportunities to ensure they are responsive to change and well positioned for business opportunities. For over 15 years, Inka has delivered results on closing gender gaps in large-scale investments in employment and skills, value-chains, entrepreneurship, access to finance, gender-based violence and community benefit sharing. She was the global lead of the World Bank Gender and Energy Program across over 80 countries and simultaneously managed the Africa regions progress on gender equality in an over $10 billion portfolio of generation, transmission, distribution and off-grid projects. She led the World Bank’s Gender Group infrastructure work across water, transport, ICT and energy and worked in roles at the Climate Investment Funds in DC and Camco Clean Energy Consulting in Johannesburg. Inka is a dual citizen of South Africa and Germany and holds an MSc in Environmental Change and Management from the University of Oxford and a Postgraduate Degree from the University of Cape Town in Economics and Environmental Management.
Sayeed is an environmental policy specialist with over a decade of experience developing policies related to low carbon development, energy transition, climate change, and sustainable community development practices. He is actively involved in Qatar’s energy and environmental policy discourse and discussion. He is a passionate environmentalist, running two non-profit environmental groups gathering evidence to raise awareness for community and policy action. Sayeed has published peer-reviewed journal articles and seminal reports on Qatar’s greenhouse gas emission inventory and led the first nation-wide environmental survey in Qatar. Sayeed has a B.E. Mechanical Engineering Anna University (India), Entrepreneurship Certification from Carnegie Mellon University and a Professional Certification in Environmental Planning and Management from CEPT. Sayeed also holds PhD from the Queensland University of Technology, with his dissertation on “Transition strategy for hydrocarbon-dependent rentier states: A focus on Qatar."
Luke focuses on climate change adaptation in developing countries and is a specialist in integrated coastal management. He has expertise in solutions that foster resilience in high-risk coastal areas through green and blue infrastructure, as well as ecosystem-based adaption. Since 2009, Luke has worked for private sector multi-national corporations as well as the NGO sector, providing project advisory services, policy, governance and research for national and subnational governments, development facilitation institutions, multilateral organisations, and private sector clients. Geographically, Luke has worked in over 25 developing countries in sub-Saharan Africa, the Pacific, the Caribbean, various small island developing states (SIDS), as well as parts of Asia and Latin America. Luke has undergraduate, Honours and Master’s degrees in Geography and Environmental Management from Rhodes University, the University of KwaZulu-Natal, and the University of the Western Cape. A native of South Africa, Luke speaks Afrikaans and isiXhosa in addition to his first language, English.
Viviana is a sustainability expert and organisational strategist with over two decades of experience supporting firms and agencies measure and improve performance across environment, social and governance metrics. As Director of VIDA Sustainability, she helps clients work through complex issues surrounding climate change, science and innovation, and ecosystem restoration. Viviana has worked with the University of Oxford, guided global corporations to expand and implement sustainability efforts, led the expansion of the UNEP Convention on Migratory Species in North America, and worked with a number of charities to further marine conservation and sustainability knowledge. She also worked as an international securities trader in Bogotá, Colombia. She is co-founder of Mujeres y Sostenibilidad, and co-founder and advisory board member of the Boyd N. Lyon Sea Turtle Fund. Viviana holds an MSc in Environmental Change and Management from the University of Oxford and a BA in Finance, Government, and International Relations from Universidad Externado de Colombia. She studied International Environment and Development at American University and Non-profit Management at Georgetown University.
Manuella helps companies become simultaneously more competitive and more sustainable by identifying resource efficiency opportunities and embedding sustainable practice into policy and governance. Her expertise spans corporate sustainability strategy, multi-level and multi-actor environmental interventions with a people-centric approach, global environmental governance and implementation of national climate commitments. She is versatile with various global reporting standards and carbon footprinting approaches. Manuella has held positions at the Brazilian Forum on Climate Change and CBC, Brazilian Mission to the United Nations, ActionAid International, ChildFund Brazil and ENEL Green Power. She is fluent in Portuguese, French, Spanish and English, and holds an MSc Development Management from the London School of Economics and a BA in International Relations, Fluminense Federal University, Brazil.
Gürkan brings 24 years of experience in investment banking and asset management and has been a pioneer in low carbon markets and sustainable finance. In 2008, Gürkan started Turkey's first sustainable financing consultancy company, underwriting carbon offset and renewable energy projects that were firsts in Turkey and in the world. As Director of Feronia Partners, he established the firm as an early-mover in renewable energy investments and asset management in Turkey. His experience is grounded in equity research analysis at Strateji Securities and IS Investments, where he prepared sector and equity research reports in energy, banking, chemicals, steel and automotive industries. At Daruma and TAIB Investment Bank, he built his career in corporate finance and executed deals in debt and equity finance. Gürkan is fluent in English & Turkish and holds Civil Engineering degree from Istanbul Technical University and an MBA degree from Bosphorus University.
Dave is a specialist in climate change analysis, disaster risk management and GIS mapping. For over 13 years, he has worked primarily in least developed countries (LDCs) to build resilience. By engaging stakeholders ranging from national governments to on-the-ground communities, he bridges the gap between academically robust analysis and actionable and realistic measures. His analysis covers climate change adaptation and mitigation, disaster risk, impact and early warning systems, environmental and humanitarian areas. He supports accredited entities to align projects with stringent donor funding technical requirements. He is cognisant of the end-user needs and employs multi-dimensional approach of spatial information design, pragmatic, relevant statistical analysis, comprehensive baseline assessment and logically ordered outcome delivery to contextualise problems and lower the barrier to entry that exists between scientists, the public, and decision-makers to interventions. Dave holds a MSc Geographical and Atmospheric Science, BSc (Hons) Atmospheric Science, and BSc Environmental and Geographical, Ocean and Atmospheric Science from the University of Cape Town, South Africa.
Ari is an energy researcher, communications specialist and social media expert with experience in communities, nonprofits and public policy stakeholders to facilitate climate policy, while also assessing the financial implications of mitigation efforts. Ari worked with the U.S House of Representatives to propose and draft legislation dedicated to clean energy and was instrumental in the creation of the Community Health and Clean Transit Act presented to the House Committee. He has also worked in the Energy and Commodities division at Bloomberg IP where he analyzed and reported the financial impacts of energy policy. Hawkins is also a contributor for Asharq News and has been featured as an expert guest for multiple segments.