Circle the Med
The Mediterranean Online Forum 2020
9-13 November
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Sharon Jackson
Founder and Director of the European Sustainability Academy (ESA)

// Short bio

Sharon Jackson, Founder/CEO of The European Sustainability Academy, Crete (ESA), Director of Carlton Consultancy Ltd. UK, Associate Faculty at Cranfield School of Management, Associate Scholar at University of Cumbria, Institute for Sustainability and Leadership and Visiting Research Fellow at Athens University of Economics and Business. In 2011, Sharon designed and built ESA in Crete, Greece, as a globally unique, off-grid, biophilia designed, international centre for experiential learning in sustainability leadership. Her vision to build ESA evolved from her extensive global experiences in business and academia and a personal frustration at ‘ineffective’ approaches to sustainable business and failures to meet the SDG global indicators. Her research focus, since 2007, has been about understanding the ‘gap’ between intentions to enact sustainability practices in organisations and actual action. She combines the fields of sensemaking with organisational culture theory to create practical leadership development interventions which build the new knowledge, skills, and behaviours necessary for leading practical sustainability transitions in organisations of all sizes.

Her academic work includes a 2-year empirical study exploring the reasons for the disconnection between organisational intentions to embed CSR policy and actual CSR actions. Her most recent research about making sense of the positive impact of biophilic design on human health and wellbeing is due for publication in Springer Nature by the end of 2020. Sharon held several Executive Board appointments over 27 years, mainly in the electronic component sector, developing business through global distribution and OEM supply chains. Her past and current global consulting clients span sectors including, electronic consumer products, energy, mining, telecoms, tourism and FMCG. In 2000, she expanded her corporate career to senior executive education and research roles. Her strategic leadership development experience includes 2 decades designing bespoke programmes including ground-breaking 'Sustainability Leadership', immersive learning retreat-based programmes in Tasmania and China.

A business mentor for over 25 years and since 2019 she has been an Associate Apprenticeship Tutor at Cranfield University for the L7 Senior Leader Masterships, UK Gov. initiative to upskill business leaders. She is also a ReLoad Greece mentor (London Business School and ALBA, Athens) the international programme which prepares young Greek entrepreneurs to pitch to potential investors. Her coaching on blended - learning programmes such as Women in Sustainable Enterprise (WISE) spans cohorts across Africa, Greece, India and the UK.

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