Jim Harris is a #1 international bestselling author, the former leader of the Green Party of Canada, a former National Post columnist focusing on how going green is profitable, a technology columnist with Backbone magazine and a management consultant.

Jim is also a passionate roller blader, cyclist, hot yogi and lover of most cuisines. He is a grad of Queen’s University and is married to Lee-Anne McAlear.

Mr. Harris is a much sought after speaker at conferences and seminars and has been speaking professionally for more than 20 years and has been rated as one of the best speakers in North America. Mr. Harris’ clients include Association of Research Libraries, Barclays Bank, Certified Management Accountants, Cleantech, Columbia Tristar Pictures, Deloitte & Touche, European Snack Food Association, Glaxo Wellcome, IABC, IBM, IEEE, International Council of Shopping Centers, Johnson & Johnson, MasterCard, Munich Re, NEC, Novartis, Soc. of Professional Engineers, Sybase, TNT Worldwide Express, the UK Cabinet Office and Zurich.

In 2011 Mr. Harris became the Program Director for the Centre of Excellence in Sustainability and Innovation at York University’s Shulich Executive Education Centre (SEEC) which has been ranked as the best program for sustainability worldwide by numerous organizations.

Articles by Jim

Beyond the Mainstream at the World Economic Forum: Jim Harris Reports from Davos

Jim Harris[Today is the first day of the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos (Jan 22-25). Many surveys and analysis will be presented at the Forum and side events outlining the problems and solutions the world and nations face. Here are some points of view that you will NOT likely hear coming out of WEF.]

Severe Income Disparity

In a marketing coup, Oxfam publicized a staggering fact two days before the conference began: the net worth of the 85 wealthiest people in the world is equal to that of the 3.5-billion poorest worldwide. And the wealth of the richest 1 per cent of the world’s population roughly equals that of everyone else (the 99 per cent). On Twitter this generated 18,000 tweets on January 19 — which was more than both of WEF’s primary hashtags combined — #wef14 and #Davos.

“Severe income disparity” is one of the most significant global risks identified by the World Economic Forum in 2014. But delegates spend $40,000+ to attend the Forum — and there is the incessant buzz of helicopters ferrying delegates to Davos at $10,000 a trip. As Marshall McLuhan said the medium is the message. Oxfam’s approach highlights the depth of inequality — and it really makes me wonder: How much is enough?

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Davos: Talking Champagne on a Sinking Titanic

On the morning of Saturday, January 12 when I logged onto Facebook, a friend’s status update jumped out at me: “WHY DO MEDIA FAIL TO DISCUSS OPENLY THE SIGNS OF CLIMATE CHANGE? IT”S NOW 12 DEGREES IN TORONTO, NO SNOW, AND THE SIGNS OF SPRING IN JANUARY ARE NOT GOOD FOR ECOLOGY, HYDROLOGY, OR HUMAN PROSPERITY.”

Later in the day the temperature rose to 15ºC, at 3 p.m. setting a new record according to Environment Canada.

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How Much Can Business Influence the Environment?

This is the Eleventh of a series of weekly columns by Tyler Elm and Jim Harris on how sustainability can save business.

Our first blog, How Sustainability Can Save Business, reframes the common purpose of traditional Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) practitioners — that of “saving the environment.” Our premise: Given the social and economic frameworks and institutions of our society, more can be accomplished (and faster) by viewing sustainability as an economic opportunity relevant to business, compared to viewing it as an environmental initiative in isolation of business. Therefore the goal of “saving the environment” may be more appropriately framed as “saving business.”

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Is Sustainability Breaking into the C-Suite? CFOs are coming to the table.

This is the tenth of a series of weekly columns by Tyler Elm and Jim Harris on how sustainability can save business.

Chief Financial Officers (CFOs) and Chief Operating Officers (COOs) are increasingly accountable for sustainability. A study by Deloitte — Sustainability: CFOs are coming to the table — found their accountability for sustainability had jumped sharply during the last year. In 2012, 26 per cent of CFOs were responsible to the board for their firm’s sustainability strategy, up from 17 per cent in 2011. Similarly, for COOs it was 10 per cent in 2012, up from 3 per cent in 2011. Further, 53 per cent of CFOs said their involvement had increased in the last year, with 61 per cent noting they expected it to increase over the next two years.

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Canada Needs a National Climate Policy – Now!

This is the ninth of a series of weekly columns by Tyler Elm and Jim Harris on how sustainability can save business.

Canada needs a “national approach to climate policy and carbon pricing.” Think that this is the advice of some environmental group? Then think again; this is the urging of the Canadian Council of Chief Executives (CCCE) in a policy paper: Clean Growth 2.0: How Canada can be a Leader in Energy and Environmental Innovation.

The paper highlights how Canada can build a more competitive economy and a more sustainable society while ensuring adequate public finances to fund Canadian’s way of life. It calls for the federal government, in partnership with the provinces and territories, to develop a national energy framework, specifically to “develop clean energy solutions and position Canada for leadership internationally.”

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