John co-founded SustainAbility with Julia Hailes in 1987, served as Chairman from 1995-2005, and was a Board member until 2014.
Previously, he worked with TEST (Transport & Environment Studies as a Senior Associate, 1974-78), co-founded Environmental Data Services (ENDS) Ltd in 1978 (where he was Founding Editor and later Managing Director), and John Elkington Associates in 1983. In 2008, he co-founded Volans, where he is Executive Chairman.
John is a world authority on corporate responsibility and sustainable development. In 2004, BusinessWeek described him as “a dean of the corporate responsibility movement for three decades.” In 2008, The Evening Standard named him 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 him fourth out of 100 people listed: after Al Gore, Barack Obama and the late Anita Roddick of the Body Shop, and alongside Muhammad Yunus of the Grameen Bank.
John is author or co-author of 17 books (including 1988’s million-selling Green Consumer Guide; the most recent being The Power of Unreasonable People: How Social Entrepreneurs Create Markets That Change the World, co–authored with Pamela Hartigan and published by Harvard Business School Press, 2008) and over 40 published reports (the most recent being TheTransparent Economy: Six Tigers Stalk the Global Recovery—and How to Tame Them, 2010).