Serco employee named Young Global Leader by World Economic Forum

Published: 6 Mar 2012

Serco employee Jane Burston has been selected as a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum, an honour she will use to fight climate change by bringing international attention to the capabilities of the UK's planned Centre for Carbon Measurement. Jane works at the National Physical Laboratory's (NPL), which is managed and operated by Serco.

Every year, the World Economic Forum recognises 100-200 exceptional young leaders worldwide who will commit a portion of their time to work together to improve the world. Jane is one of 14 people from the UK to be named in 2012.

The honourees can participate in the Young Global Leader community for a five-year term, which allows them access to world class events, including the World Economic Forum Annual Davos Meeting. It provides a platform for collaboration and joint action and a voice to influence the direction of global policy and business.

Jane recently joined NPL to launch a Centre for Carbon Measurement. This Centre will draw on and develop NPL's world leading measurement expertise to: provide accurate carbon measurement capabilities to improve understanding of climate change and inform government policy; underpin carbon trading; and provide the development support and validation needed to commercialise low carbon technology.

Jane says: "Key to our success is demonstrating to the right people how carbon measurement can improve business practices, promote low carbon innovation and support mitigation and adaptation to climate change - including agreeing global targets and standards. Forming a close connection with the global leaders of the future, as well as current leaders, policy makers and CEOs of global organisations through events like Davos, will be a huge advantage in achieving that."

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The Young Global Leaders community includes more than 700 young leaders from over 100 countries. Active members include senior people in energy production and distribution, corporate sustainability, low carbon investment, technology innovation and global policy making. Jane hopes many of these could be potential partners in carbon measurement projects. 
The community is active and influential. Past honourees have used the group to collaborate on projects such as developing country-wide infrastructure for electric vehicles and sailing a catamaran made out of 12,500 reclaimed plastic bottles halfway round the world to draw attention to marine pollution and climate change.

Young Global Leaders are selected against the specific criteria that have been set out to shape this community. The Selection Committee, chaired by Queen Rania Al Abdullah of Jordan, and composed of international leaders from business, government and media, then assesses the impact and visibility of the individuals' contributions to society.

Jane was selected as a Young Global Leader because of her passion and commitment to making change happen. Jane joined NPL in January 2012 from Carbon Retirement, a social enterprise she co-founded that takes an innovative approach to carbon offsetting. Prior to this, Jane worked as an environmental consultant, including on climate change policy for Transport for London and the Mayor of London's office, and to FTSE 100 businesses. She is a guest lecturer on carbon trading at Ashridge Business School, and in 2009 was a British Council Climate Change Ambassador.

Jane concludes: "It's great to see the World Economic Forum recognising and supporting those who are working to find practical ways to benefit the world, and not just those focusing on growth at any cost."


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