About Duncan

Coral reef conservation (Indonesia, 2018)

What I do

I help organisations transition towards environmental sustainability utilising human factors.

I have an eclectic background, although now I would categorise myself as an organisational psychologist with a focus on sustainability. What drives me is how to create change. How can we move towards environmental sustainability quickly and effectively, and how can we leverage the power of people in this transition. This requires commitment and action at multiple levels which is a crucial part of transitioning towards Net-Zero.

My research focuses on the psychological mechanisms that promote green behaviours, what motivates employees, and how values and norms can support Net-Zero transitions. My goal is to help organisations navigate and strive towards a greener future. As organisations create strategy and policy towards Net-Zero, I provide academic insight and knowledge of the empirical evidence on the processes and practical steps that work.

How I do it

Peer-reviewed research – I research the prevalence of psychological factors that promote employee green behaviours that contribute to organisational change.

Business coaching – I am a qualified ILM level 7 executive coach. A unique method that is a useful tool for transformation and creating change.

Talks & workshops – I give talks and run workshops on global environmental issues, business sustainability, environmental psychology and behaviour.

Collaborating and networking – Working with academics, practitioners, government agencies, and organisations. This multi stakeholder approach is crucial to expedite Net-Zero transitions.

Teaching – I lecture at the Norwich Business School. Imparting knowledge and skills for the next generation of employees and business leaders.

Why I do it

I’m a pragmatic person, I look for solutions and the best ways forward when confronted with a challenge. I’ve worked on deforestation and coral reef regeneration programs around the world, yet the driver of the degradation of our global environment remains the elephant in the room: carbon emissions. We need rapid and far reaching transitions at all levels of society. Businesses and organisations can be the drivers of change if they have the right leadership, culture, values, and vision. Businesses have the unique position of taking on this enterprise of the future. The future is green and the first movers will have the competitive advantage. This transformation can be informed by evidence-based behavioural science.

Just as organisations should ‘start with why‘, I did the same. Being part of the solution towards an environmentally sustainable future and liveable planet starts with people and organisations making the right decisions. These decisions aren’t just the morally right decisions, they make business sense too. I can’t imagine doing anything else.

What’s at stake?

In the last 75 years our global population and use of resources has skyrocketed (nicknamed the “the Great Acceleration“), resulting in the Anthropocene… the age of Humans. This has led to a plethora of issues, the most pressing is climate change that threatens our current global societal structures and way of life. This wicked problem is daunting, it is so hard to see the path forward at times but the hardest problems are the most exciting to challenge!

These issues might seem thousands of miles away but we live in an interconnected global system. The effects on these ecosystems and the global temperature will affect us profoundly, we rely on nature to support our society and as it crumbles beneath our feet, the foundations of our society begin to look shaky. While it may seem like your organisation in the city has nothing to do with the environment, your organisation has a carbon footprint, and that footprint is contributing to the global environmental problems. So we have to change, we have to meet these challenges.