About Alan

Alan TEDx Uppsala Nov 2014

Click to see Alan’s recent TED talk on YouTube

Alan AtKisson is an author, consultant, speaker, and executive trainer, focused on issues of sustainability — from global to local. He advises governments, companies, cities, NGOs, and the United Nations. He has been working at the forefront of sustainability since 1988, providing expert insight and inspiring people with his creative and multi-faceted approach to making positive change happen. His instruments include books, strategy tools, keynote speeches, workshops, sometimes even a guitar … and other innovative approaches to help people transform complex systems. In 2013, he was inducted into the international Sustainability Hall of Fame.


Alan’s books include the sustainability bestseller Believing Cassandra: How to be an optimist in a pessimist’s world (1999, 2010); The Sustainability Transformation: How to accelerate positive change in challenging times (2010); Life Beyond Growth (with Junko Edahiro, Random House Japan, 2012), and most recently Sustainability is for Everyone (2013).

Alan is also a singer-songwriter. His sixth studio album, American Troubadour, was released in 2014. (Listen to it free on the web, here.)

AlanAtKisson_Portrait_2014_1As founder and president of the AtKisson Group, Alan has developed a professional network of sustainability-dedicated Affiliates and Associates in 15 countries. Members of the AtKisson Group include leading university centers of expertise in their regions, as well as non-profit foundations and private consultancies. AtKisson Group members advise companies, governments, cities, and educational institutions on sustainability strategy, policy, research, and initiative design.

Alan is the lead developer of the VISIS Method, the Sustainability Compass, the Pyramid workshop for sustainable development planning, and other tools and methods now used around the world. His work has influenced thousands of people who use these tools to manage CSR programs, learn the principles of systems thinking, convene stakeholders, and to facilitate other aspects of modern sustainability practice.

In 2013, Alan was inducted into the Sustainability Hall of Fame by the International Society of Sustainability Professionals in recognition for his pioneering work in establishing sustainability consulting as a profession, and for the inspiration he has provided to thousands of other professionals around the world. He joined a list of luminaries in the field that includes John Elkington, Hunter Lovins, Karl-Henrik Robèrt, Mathis Wackernagel, Hazel Henderson, and Ray Anderson, among others.

Also in 2013, Alan was named a member of the President’s Science and Technology Advisory Council, by President José Manuel Barroso of the European Commission, and served until the end of Pres. Barroso’s mandate in October 2014.

A dual citizen of both Sweden and the United States, Alan lives in Stockholm with his wife, Kristina AtKisson (also a highly experienced sustainability professional and member of AtKisson Group).



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