About us

Non-executive directors shape the strategy of a business to address the risks and opportunities climate change presents. Chapter Zero is here to help them.

Our purpose

To build a community of non-executive directors and equip them to lead crucial UK boardroom discussions on the impacts of climate change. Our members are helping ensure their companies are fit for the future and that global net zero ambitions are transformed into robust plans and measurable action.

 

Our history

In 2019 Chapter Zero was set up by a group of non-executive directors (NEDs) who recognised that they have a role in making sure their businesses respond to the risks and opportunities created by climate change. They could see that NEDs hold a unique position with the potential to make this happen, but to do so need relevant information tailored to their role in business. They decided to found Chapter Zero and build a community of NEDs who were equipped, ready and prepared to act.

As they were coming together in the UK, the World Economic Forum (WEF) was publishing its report on ‘How to set up effective climate governance on corporate boards’. The report contains eight principles and guiding questions for boards to address to embed climate governance in their business. With an aligned view on the importance of the board’s role when it comes to addressing climate change, a fruitful partnership has followed. As part of this, Chapter Zero is the UK Chapter of the WEF’s Climate Governance Initiative and has shared its experience with new and emerging directors’ climate forums around the world.

Chapter Zero was developed with the support of the Hughes Hall Centre for Climate Change Engagement, University of Cambridge, and Deloitte. In 2020 Chapter Zero received philanthropic funding and employed a permanent team of staff. Chapter Zero is a not-for-profit business wholly owned by Hughes Hall, a college at the University of Cambridge.

 

What we do

We help non-executive directors engage with the potential risks and opportunities for businesses and take this discussion into their boardrooms. We provide a space where the non-executive community can enhance its knowledge, understanding and experience of this complex and critical business challenge by:

  • Running climate change briefings, round tables, workshops and conferences with our Partners
  • Creating awareness of other relevant events members would find useful to attend
  • Making available practical toolkits which enable members to take climate change discussions into their boardrooms
  • Providing access to briefing materials, films, and online courses
  • Signposting where to go for help on climate change as an engaged board member
  • Bringing together investors, regulators, company directors, plus key experts, to learn from and influence each others’ perspectives
  • Providing a forum where directors can share experiences and debate issues
  • Giving access to the World Economic Forum online materials
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Our Chairs

Chapter Zero is supported by chairs of leading organisations who recognise the massive challenge climate change poses to UK businesses.

Sarah Bates

Chair of John Lewis Partnership Trust for Pensions and Polar Capital Technology Trust

Mark Tucker

Chair of HSBC plc

David Tyler

Chair of Domestic & General and The White Company

Richard Gillingwater

Chair of Janus Henderson plc

Ruth Cairnie

Chair of Babcock

Don Robert

Chair of London Stock Exchange Group plc

Our steering committee

Julie Baddeley

Robert Jennings

Carol Bell

Gillian Karran-Cumberlege

Rosemary Boot

Karina Litvack

Susan Hooper

Patrick Mitchell

Our team

Emily Auckland

Emily Auckland

Programme Director

Karen Hoffa

Climate Governance
Programme Manager

calum davies

Calum Davies

Member Engagement Manager

calum davies

Zoe Wilkinson

Communications Manager

Aurélie Guingamp

Project Officer