Program

Below is the program from the 2017 MIT Sustainability Summit.

Friday 28 April 2017
08:00
Registration / Breakfast
08:00
Read more about confirmed speakers
Jem Hudson
Director of Engagement, Breckinridge Capital Advisors
Jem Hudson is the Director of Engagement at Breckinridge Capital Advisors, a Boston-based fixed income investment management firm with over $27 billion in assets under management. In her role, Jem is primarily responsible for helping strengthen Breckinridge’s ESG and sustainability-related dialogue with a range of key stakeholders including issuers, clients, industry peers, and thought leaders. To this end, Jem leads Breckinridge’s issuer engagement efforts, develops thought leadership including our ESG Newsletter, and collaborates with various departments across the firm in order to bolster our sustainability-related efforts. She joined the firm in January 2016 and has over 11 years of financial services and sustainability experience. Prior to Breckinridge, Jem was the CEO of Caldy Group, a boutique strategy consulting firm she founded to advise financial institutions seeking to expand their presence in sustainable investing. Before Caldy Group, Jem was a researcher with Professor Michael E. Porter at Harvard Business School, where she made contributions in the areas of competitive strategy, competitiveness of nations and creating shared value. Jem started her career as an analyst in Deutsche Bank's investment banking division. She serves as a steering committee member for High Meadows Institute’s Path to Value initiative and for the Wharton School’s Social Impact Alumni Group. She is also a senior alumni advisor to the Harvard College Impact Investing Group. Jem holds an AB from Harvard College and an MBA from The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.
Joshua Kazdin
Vice President, Scientific Active Equity, BlackRock
Joshua Kazdin is a member of BlackRock's Scientific Active Equity team (SAE). He is responsible for developing SAE's Impact Investing platform and conducting alpha-generating research on stock selection, top-down and thematic insights across active global long only and long short equity funds.

Prior to joining BlackRock in 2011, Mr. Kazdin was a research analyst at Lazard Asset Management and a research associate at International Strategy & Investment Group.

Mr. Kazdin earned a BS, with distinction, in economics and political science from Duke University in 2008 and an MFin degree in finance from Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 2011.
Beth Lowery
Senior Director for Sustainability and ESG, TPG Capital
Beth Lowery is a Senior Director for Sustainability and ESG at TPG Capital. She joined TPG in September 2012 after a 20 year career with General Motors Company where she was Corporate Vice President, Environment, Energy & Safety. Mrs. Lowery held various positions at GM, including General Counsel- North America. She also was Senior Knowledge Leader, Environmental Responsibility and a Principal of GreenOrder at LRN; Partner at Honigman Miller Schwartz & Cohn; law clerk to Michigan Supreme Court Justice G. Mennen Williams, as well as serving on several non-profit boards. Her primary responsibilities within TPG include leading the Sustainability and ESG program development, strategy and deployment across the Firm, engaging with portfolio companies to build sustainable businesses, and assisting deal teams on due diligence matters. Ms. Lowery is a member of the PRI Private Equity Advisory Committee and the Corporate Eco Forum Leadership Council.
Mike McCreless
Senior Director of Strategy & Impact, Root Capital
Mike McCreless is Senior Director of Strategy & Impact at Root Capital, where he oversees social & environmental due diligence and impact evaluation, and facilitates long-term and annual strategic planning and organizational development. His article "Toward the Efficient Impact Frontier" was featured in the Winter 2016 issue of the Stanford Social Innovation Review. He previously consulted for Monitor Company and conducted research for Harvard Business School professor Michael Porter. Mike holds an M.B.A. and an M.P.A. from Harvard University and a B.A. from Yale University.
Jim Miller
Vice President of Worldwide Operations, Google
Jim Miller is vice president of worldwide Operations at Google. In this role, he has responsibility for global operations, planning, supply chain and new product introduction for Google’s IT infrastructure and Google Fiber. Additionally, he has responsibility for Google Energy and Corporate & Social Responsibility. He is also actively engaged with Google’s efforts in the area of Computational Genomics and Biology as the executive sponsor.
Prior to joining Google in 2010, Jim was executive vice president of Sanmina-SCI Corporation, one of the world’s largest electronic manufacturing service providers, where he had responsibility for their industrial, clean tech, multimedia and automotive businesses.
Jim has held a variety of leadership roles throughout his career. He has held numerous executive leadership roles in operations and supply chain management at Cisco, Amazon.com, Teledesic LLC, Intel and IBM.
Jim has a bachelor’s degree in aerospace engineering from Purdue University, a master’s degree in mechanical engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a master’s degree in management from the Sloan School of Management at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology where he was a “MIT Leaders for Manufacturing” Fellow.
Liesel Pritzker Simmons
Co-founder and Principal, Blue Haven Initiative
Liesel Pritzker Simmons is Co-Founder and Principal of Blue Haven Initiative, where she oversees a portfolio structured to generate competitive financial returns and address social and environmental challenges. The portfolio spans asset classes, from traditional equities and direct investments to philanthropic programs.

Liesel co-founded Blue Haven with her husband, Ian Simmons. Their investment portfolios, restructured to be impact-driven, became the foundation of Blue Haven, one of the first family offices created with impact investing as its focus. In addition to working closely with entrepreneurs, nonprofits and co-investors on companies and initiatives that create social, environmental and financial value, Liesel develops strategic partnerships with organizations that support and advance more informed investing.
Victor Reinoso
Independent Sector, Chief Operating Officer
Victor is chief operating officer of Independent Sector, the nation’s leading voice for the charitable sector, and founder of Hopscotch Ventures, a mission-driven investment and advisory firm.
As an entrepreneur, investor & advisor Victor has worked with a portfolio of early stage ventures including Decision Science Labs (acquired by Schoolzilla), TenMarks (acquired by Amazon), LearnZillion, and Ellevation. Victor was previously Entrepreneur in Residence at the NewSchools Venture Fund and Senior Advisor on Innovation to the President of Georgetown University, where he helped develop the University’s MOOC strategy and launch a new executive master’s in leadership. He was the District of Columbia’s first deputy mayor for education, where he oversaw the mayor’s takeover of the DC Public Schools, a $1+ billion operating budget, and the largest capital investment in public buildings in DC history.
Previously, Victor was founder & CEO of RadioFutura (an early streaming media company), and a consultant to leading brands including AOL, PBS, Verizon. He has served on multiple boards and is a Trustee of the District of Columbia Public Library system.
Victor is a member & moderator of the Aspen Global Leaders Network and the Pahara-Aspen Education Fellowship. He has a bachelor’s degree from Georgetown University and an MBA from MIT. The son of Peruvian immigrants, Victor grew up in a Spanish-only household and lives in Washington, DC with his family.
George Serafeim
Jakurski Family Associate Professor of Business Administration, Harvard Business School
George Serafeim is the Jakurski Family Associate Professor of Business Administration at Harvard Business School. He has taught courses in the MBA and doctoral programs, chaired Executive Education programs, authored more than 100 articles and business cases, and presented his research in more than 100 conferences and seminars. He has spoken at major events in over 60 countries around the world and is one of the most popular business authors, according to rankings of the Social Science Research Network.
Professor Serafeim's research interests are international, focusing on corporate valuation, governance and reporting issues. His work has been published in the most prestigious academic and practitioner journals including Journal of Finance and Harvard Business Review. Professor Serafeim has extensive experience as a senior advisor and board member in both the non-profit and private sectors. He is a co-founder of KKS Advisors and a senior advisor to Calvert Research and Management. Professor Serafeim earned his doctorate in business administration at Harvard Business School and a master's degree in accounting and finance from the London School of Economics and Political Science. He grew up in Athens, Greece.
Sarah Smith
Director, Institutional Relations (North America), Sustainalytics
Since 2006, Sarah has worked in the area of environmental, social and governance (ESG) research, first as an analyst working on customized client projects and deliverables, then moving into a client relations role. Focused primarily on the U.S. market, Sarah helps prospective clients identify their ESG research needs and find the responsible investment solution that suits them best. She communicates regularly with clients, providing education and support for all stakeholders, helping to identify new markets, and supporting their sales and marketing efforts through meetings and presentations. Sarah also speaks regularly on the topics of responsible investing and ESG investing at conferences.
Prior to joining Sustainalytics Sarah worked for an English as a second language teaching program in South Korea and studied gender equality and its relations to sustainable development in Mexico. Sarah has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science and International Development from Wilfrid Laurier University in Ontario.
Cao Yin
Founding Partner and Chief Architect, Energy Blockchain Labs
Mr. Cao Yin is the Founding Partner and Chief Architect of the Energy Blockchain Labs, which is the world's first company focused on blockchain technology energy application along the whole value chain of the industry.

He was the chief expert of blockchain as well as the principal energy analyst of China Cinda Security, which is the investment bank of China Cinda Group, the biggest financial asset management company in China.

Mr. Cao also performs as strategic advisor for several famous energy companies. Mr. Cao Yin is one of the earliest proponents of the energy Internet concept in China. He participated in the formulation of China's national definition of Energy Internet and participated in the formulation and popularization of China's National Energy Internet Action Plan as one of the leaders of the task force.

Mr. Cao has written a book, National Strategic Action Roadmap, with Mr. Ma Huateng, the Chairman of Tencent Group.
Susan Zhu
Chairman and CEO, Shanghai Treasure Carbon New Energy Environmental Protection Technology Co., Ltd
As one of the leaders of low-carbon industry, Susan Zhu founded Shanghai Treasure Carbon New Energy Environmental Protection Technology Co., Ltd, Shanghai Environment Energy Exchange Hong Kong Division, Treasure Carbon Asset Management Co., Ltd., and will establish TC Beijing, Guangzhou, Sichuan, Wuhan, Guizhou Divisions, serving as the Chairman and CEO. She was nominated as the candidate of the Social Impact Award of Education UK Alumni Awards in 2016, and was designated as the low-carbon expert of Hong Kong Financial Services Institute and the Center for China and Globalization. Susan successfully led the Low Carbon Financial Innovation and Cooperation Forum in Shanghai & Hong Kong, and participated in the World Climate Conference, Davos World Economic Forum and Western Returned Scholars Association frequently. Susan holds a Masters in Marketing from Durham University. She is also an active philanthropist; she supports charities to fight climate change.
09:00
Introduction
09:15
Fireside Chat: Materiality and Measurement
10:00
Keynote Panel: Applications and Obstacles of Sustainability Measurement
11:00
Panel: How to Finance Energy Innovation
11:00
Panel: Public / Private Partnerships in Sustainable Finance
12:00
Keynote Speaker / Lunch
13:30
Panel: Water Ownership - Rights and Responsibilities
13:30
Panel: Labor - Investing in Good Jobs
14:30
Panel: Energy and Carbon Credits in China
14:30
Panel: Education - What should we be financing?
14:30
Panel: Financial Inclusion - Opportunities and Challenges of Digitization
15:30
Keynote Panel: Implementation and Developing Buy-In
16:45
Drinks and Networking
Friday 28 April 2017
08:00
Registration / Breakfast

Read more about confirmed speakers

READ MORE »
09:00
Introduction
09:15
Fireside Chat: Materiality and Measurement
10:00
Keynote Panel: Applications and Obstacles of Sustainability Measurement
11:00
Panel: How to Finance Energy Innovation
Panel: Public / Private Partnerships in Sustainable Finance
12:00
Keynote Speaker / Lunch
13:30
Panel: Water Ownership - Rights and Responsibilities
Panel: Labor - Investing in Good Jobs
14:30
Panel: Energy and Carbon Credits in China
Panel: Education - What should we be financing?
Panel: Financial Inclusion - Opportunities and Challenges of Digitization
15:30
Keynote Panel: Implementation and Developing Buy-In
16:45
Drinks and Networking


Session descriptions


Read more about confirmed speakers

Jem Hudson
DIRECTOR OF ENGAGEMENT, Breckinridge Capital Advisors
Jem Hudson is the Director of Engagement at Breckinridge Capital Advisors, a Boston-based fixed income investment management firm with over $27 billion in assets under management. In her role, Jem is primarily responsible for helping strengthen Breckinridge’s ESG and sustainability-related dialogue with a range of key stakeholders including issuers, clients, industry peers, and thought leaders. To this end, Jem leads Breckinridge’s issuer engagement efforts, develops thought leadership including our ESG Newsletter, and collaborates with various departments across the firm in order to bolster our sustainability-related efforts. She joined the firm in January 2016 and has over 11 years of financial services and sustainability experience. Prior to Breckinridge, Jem was the CEO of Caldy Group, a boutique strategy consulting firm she founded to advise financial institutions seeking to expand their presence in sustainable investing. Before Caldy Group, Jem was a researcher with Professor Michael E. Porter at Harvard Business School, where she made contributions in the areas of competitive strategy, competitiveness of nations and creating shared value. Jem started her career as an analyst in Deutsche Bank's investment banking division. She serves as a steering committee member for High Meadows Institute’s Path to Value initiative and for the Wharton School’s Social Impact Alumni Group. She is also a senior alumni advisor to the Harvard College Impact Investing Group. Jem holds an AB from Harvard College and an MBA from The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.


Joshua Kazdin
VICE PRESIDENT, SCIENTIFIC ACTIVE EQUITY, BlackRock
Joshua Kazdin is a member of BlackRock's Scientific Active Equity team (SAE). He is responsible for developing SAE's Impact Investing platform and conducting alpha-generating research on stock selection, top-down and thematic insights across active global long only and long short equity funds.

Prior to joining BlackRock in 2011, Mr. Kazdin was a research analyst at Lazard Asset Management and a research associate at International Strategy & Investment Group.

Mr. Kazdin earned a BS, with distinction, in economics and political science from Duke University in 2008 and an MFin degree in finance from Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 2011.


Beth Lowery
SENIOR DIRECTOR FOR SUSTAINABILITY AND ESG, TPG Capital
Beth Lowery is a Senior Director for Sustainability and ESG at TPG Capital. She joined TPG in September 2012 after a 20 year career with General Motors Company where she was Corporate Vice President, Environment, Energy & Safety. Mrs. Lowery held various positions at GM, including General Counsel- North America. She also was Senior Knowledge Leader, Environmental Responsibility and a Principal of GreenOrder at LRN; Partner at Honigman Miller Schwartz & Cohn; law clerk to Michigan Supreme Court Justice G. Mennen Williams, as well as serving on several non-profit boards. Her primary responsibilities within TPG include leading the Sustainability and ESG program development, strategy and deployment across the Firm, engaging with portfolio companies to build sustainable businesses, and assisting deal teams on due diligence matters. Ms. Lowery is a member of the PRI Private Equity Advisory Committee and the Corporate Eco Forum Leadership Council.


Mike McCreless
SENIOR DIRECTOR OF STRATEGY & IMPACT, Root Capital
Mike McCreless is Senior Director of Strategy & Impact at Root Capital, where he oversees social & environmental due diligence and impact evaluation, and facilitates long-term and annual strategic planning and organizational development. His article "Toward the Efficient Impact Frontier" was featured in the Winter 2016 issue of the Stanford Social Innovation Review. He previously consulted for Monitor Company and conducted research for Harvard Business School professor Michael Porter. Mike holds an M.B.A. and an M.P.A. from Harvard University and a B.A. from Yale University.


Jim Miller
VICE PRESIDENT OF WORLDWIDE OPERATIONS, Google
Jim Miller is vice president of worldwide Operations at Google. In this role, he has responsibility for global operations, planning, supply chain and new product introduction for Google’s IT infrastructure and Google Fiber. Additionally, he has responsibility for Google Energy and Corporate & Social Responsibility. He is also actively engaged with Google’s efforts in the area of Computational Genomics and Biology as the executive sponsor.
Prior to joining Google in 2010, Jim was executive vice president of Sanmina-SCI Corporation, one of the world’s largest electronic manufacturing service providers, where he had responsibility for their industrial, clean tech, multimedia and automotive businesses.
Jim has held a variety of leadership roles throughout his career. He has held numerous executive leadership roles in operations and supply chain management at Cisco, Amazon.com, Teledesic LLC, Intel and IBM.
Jim has a bachelor’s degree in aerospace engineering from Purdue University, a master’s degree in mechanical engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a master’s degree in management from the Sloan School of Management at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology where he was a “MIT Leaders for Manufacturing” Fellow.


Liesel Pritzker Simmons
CO-FOUNDER AND PRINCIPAL, Blue Haven Initiative
Liesel Pritzker Simmons is Co-Founder and Principal of Blue Haven Initiative, where she oversees a portfolio structured to generate competitive financial returns and address social and environmental challenges. The portfolio spans asset classes, from traditional equities and direct investments to philanthropic programs.

Liesel co-founded Blue Haven with her husband, Ian Simmons. Their investment portfolios, restructured to be impact-driven, became the foundation of Blue Haven, one of the first family offices created with impact investing as its focus. In addition to working closely with entrepreneurs, nonprofits and co-investors on companies and initiatives that create social, environmental and financial value, Liesel develops strategic partnerships with organizations that support and advance more informed investing.


Victor Reinoso
INDEPENDENT SECTOR, Chief Operating Officer
Victor is chief operating officer of Independent Sector, the nation’s leading voice for the charitable sector, and founder of Hopscotch Ventures, a mission-driven investment and advisory firm.
As an entrepreneur, investor & advisor Victor has worked with a portfolio of early stage ventures including Decision Science Labs (acquired by Schoolzilla), TenMarks (acquired by Amazon), LearnZillion, and Ellevation. Victor was previously Entrepreneur in Residence at the NewSchools Venture Fund and Senior Advisor on Innovation to the President of Georgetown University, where he helped develop the University’s MOOC strategy and launch a new executive master’s in leadership. He was the District of Columbia’s first deputy mayor for education, where he oversaw the mayor’s takeover of the DC Public Schools, a $1+ billion operating budget, and the largest capital investment in public buildings in DC history.
Previously, Victor was founder & CEO of RadioFutura (an early streaming media company), and a consultant to leading brands including AOL, PBS, Verizon. He has served on multiple boards and is a Trustee of the District of Columbia Public Library system.
Victor is a member & moderator of the Aspen Global Leaders Network and the Pahara-Aspen Education Fellowship. He has a bachelor’s degree from Georgetown University and an MBA from MIT. The son of Peruvian immigrants, Victor grew up in a Spanish-only household and lives in Washington, DC with his family.


George Serafeim
JAKURSKI FAMILY ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR OF BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION, Harvard Business School
George Serafeim is the Jakurski Family Associate Professor of Business Administration at Harvard Business School. He has taught courses in the MBA and doctoral programs, chaired Executive Education programs, authored more than 100 articles and business cases, and presented his research in more than 100 conferences and seminars. He has spoken at major events in over 60 countries around the world and is one of the most popular business authors, according to rankings of the Social Science Research Network.
Professor Serafeim's research interests are international, focusing on corporate valuation, governance and reporting issues. His work has been published in the most prestigious academic and practitioner journals including Journal of Finance and Harvard Business Review. Professor Serafeim has extensive experience as a senior advisor and board member in both the non-profit and private sectors. He is a co-founder of KKS Advisors and a senior advisor to Calvert Research and Management. Professor Serafeim earned his doctorate in business administration at Harvard Business School and a master's degree in accounting and finance from the London School of Economics and Political Science. He grew up in Athens, Greece.


Sarah Smith
DIRECTOR, INSTITUTIONAL RELATIONS (NORTH AMERICA), Sustainalytics
Since 2006, Sarah has worked in the area of environmental, social and governance (ESG) research, first as an analyst working on customized client projects and deliverables, then moving into a client relations role. Focused primarily on the U.S. market, Sarah helps prospective clients identify their ESG research needs and find the responsible investment solution that suits them best. She communicates regularly with clients, providing education and support for all stakeholders, helping to identify new markets, and supporting their sales and marketing efforts through meetings and presentations. Sarah also speaks regularly on the topics of responsible investing and ESG investing at conferences.
Prior to joining Sustainalytics Sarah worked for an English as a second language teaching program in South Korea and studied gender equality and its relations to sustainable development in Mexico. Sarah has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science and International Development from Wilfrid Laurier University in Ontario.


Cao Yin
FOUNDING PARTNER AND CHIEF ARCHITECT, Energy Blockchain Labs
Mr. Cao Yin is the Founding Partner and Chief Architect of the Energy Blockchain Labs, which is the world's first company focused on blockchain technology energy application along the whole value chain of the industry.

He was the chief expert of blockchain as well as the principal energy analyst of China Cinda Security, which is the investment bank of China Cinda Group, the biggest financial asset management company in China.

Mr. Cao also performs as strategic advisor for several famous energy companies. Mr. Cao Yin is one of the earliest proponents of the energy Internet concept in China. He participated in the formulation of China's national definition of Energy Internet and participated in the formulation and popularization of China's National Energy Internet Action Plan as one of the leaders of the task force.

Mr. Cao has written a book, National Strategic Action Roadmap, with Mr. Ma Huateng, the Chairman of Tencent Group.


Susan Zhu
CHAIRMAN AND CEO, Shanghai Treasure Carbon New Energy Environmental Protection Technology Co., Ltd
As one of the leaders of low-carbon industry, Susan Zhu founded Shanghai Treasure Carbon New Energy Environmental Protection Technology Co., Ltd, Shanghai Environment Energy Exchange Hong Kong Division, Treasure Carbon Asset Management Co., Ltd., and will establish TC Beijing, Guangzhou, Sichuan, Wuhan, Guizhou Divisions, serving as the Chairman and CEO. She was nominated as the candidate of the Social Impact Award of Education UK Alumni Awards in 2016, and was designated as the low-carbon expert of Hong Kong Financial Services Institute and the Center for China and Globalization. Susan successfully led the Low Carbon Financial Innovation and Cooperation Forum in Shanghai & Hong Kong, and participated in the World Climate Conference, Davos World Economic Forum and Western Returned Scholars Association frequently. Susan holds a Masters in Marketing from Durham University. She is also an active philanthropist; she supports charities to fight climate change.