Chris was involved in early discussions around the creation of the Shell Foundation and joined soon after its launch in 2000, becoming Director in 2008.
By the time he left in 2015, Shell Foundation’s programs had created over 30,000 sustainable jobs in start-up and growing businesses in Africa, positively impacted the lives of over 20 million people in the developing world, achieved a 6 million tonne reduction in carbon emissions, and leveraged over $5 billion from other public and private sector organisations.
Chris pioneered an “enterprise-based” approach to philanthropic investment long before terms such as “venture philanthropy” or “social enterprise” were widely used. He has been profiled in the Stanford Review and received the World CSR award for “Social Innovation” in 2013. He is cited in several industry publications as a pioneer including Do More Than Give, (2010) written by FSG’s Mark Kramer, Leslie Crutchfield and John Kania and in Richard Branson’s book Screw Business As Usual, published in 2012.
Chris is the author of various reports sharing lessons learned from his experience, including Shell Foundation’s Enterprise Solutions to Poverty (2005), Enterprise Solutions to Scale, Brookings Institute (2010) and Accelerating Access to Energy (2014).
Chris completed his Doctorate in Ecology at Oxford University and then set up a business in the environmental services sector. Following the success of this company he was appointed senior environment adviser at the UK’s Department for International Development (DFID). He has worked with a variety of donors, governments, NGO’s and businesses in over 100 developing countries and has lived in both West and East Africa. Chris is a Board member of several organisations associated with environmental management and international development, including the Overseas Development Institute.