As the world advances towards looming deadlines around carbon emissions reductions, what does corporate responsibility for sustainability look like? What role can, and should, global giants such as Microsoft play in moving the lever on sustainability? In a conversation with Microsoft's Chief Environmental Officer, Lucas Joppa, this Global Energy Dialogue session explores how industry can go far beyond social advocacy in advancing core commitments around sustainability. Please join us for this important dialogue hosted by Stanford University Precourt Family Professor, Sally Benson and Stanford Precourt Institute for Energy director, professor Arun Majumdar.
Dr. Lucas Joppa leads sustainability at Microsoft, as the company’s first Chief Environmental Officer. In this role, he works to advance Microsoft’s core commitment to sustainability through ongoing technology innovation, program development, policy advancement, and global operational excellence. With a combined background in both environmental science and data science, Lucas is committed to using the power of advanced technology to help transform how society monitors, models, and ultimately manages Earth’s natural resources. He founded Microsoft’s AI for Earth program in 2017—a five-year, $50-million cross-company effort dedicated to delivering technology-enabled solutions to global environmental challenges. With a Ph.D. in Ecology from Duke University and extensive publication in leading academic journals, such as Science and Nature, Dr. Joppa is a uniquely accredited voice for sustainability in the tech industry. In addition to formerly serving on the Federal Advisory Committee for the Sustained U.S. National Climate Assessment, Lucas is an Associate Editor in Chief for the Ecological Society of America’s EcoSphere journal and an honorary Fellow at the UN Environment Program World Conservation Monitoring Center (UNEP-WCMC). He serves on the boards of leading scientific organizations, such as NatureServe and the National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis (NCEAS) Director's Council at UC Santa Barbara. Prior to his current role, Lucas was Microsoft’s Chief Environmental Scientist and led research programs at the intersection of environmental and computer sciences in Microsoft Research, the company’s blue-sky research division. He remains an active scientist, speaking frequently on issues related to Artificial Intelligence, environmental science, and sustainability. Along with his Ph.D., Lucas holds a B.S. in Wildlife Ecology from the University of Wisconsin and is a former Peace Corps volunteer to Malawi.