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Climate Change Panel Talk – A Catalyst for Action: How innovation and the energy of entrepreneurship can be a powerful force against climate change

Date & timeMonday, 1 November 6:00pm - 7:30pm
Booking closing date Monday, 1 November 12:00pm

Join us for an online panel discussion highlighting how Trinity Hall entrepreneurs are tackling climate change.


This Trinity Hall Entrepreneurs Network event explores how the innovative ideas and energy of entrepreneurship can be a powerful catalyst for action and force in tackling climate change. Our four alumni panellists are each, in their own unique way, successfully addressing issues of climate change. They range from the invention of an app which calculates your carbon footprint, to a company which uses solar energy in new technological ways to create high-quality water with projects in West Bengal and Dubai, to a start-up which is revolutionising motorcycle taxi transport in Rwanda by the use of electric motorcycles. Our final panellist runs an award-winning independent research and advisory firm with expertise in digital strategies for environment, health & safety, sustainability and smart buildings.

The discussion will be facilitated by Trinity Hall Fellow Commoner, Professor Jennifer Howard-Grenville, the Diageo Professor of Organisation Studies at the Cambridge Judge Business School. We will explore what specific attributes entrepreneurs need to bring to solving the problems of climate change, how they are best placed to make a difference, how public and private sectors can work together, what are the biggest challenges to entrepreneurs in innovating in this field – we may ask whether we need a new kind of entrepreneur entirely!


Professor Jennifer Howard-Grenville

Jennifer Howard-GrenvilleProfessor Jennifer Howard-Grenville is the Diageo Professor of Organisation Studies at the Cambridge Judge Business School, University of Cambridge and a Fellow of Trinity Hall. An expert in qualitative research and organisational change, she explores how people and organisations generate and navigate change related to sustainability.

Over a period of twenty years, she has conducted in-depth studies into how people make meaningful change in companies from a variety of sectors, including semiconductor manufacturing, apparel, and oil and gas. Jennifer has taught extensively on management and sustainability topics at the Executive, MBA, EMBA, doctorate and undergraduate level. She serves as Deputy Editor at one of the field’s top journals, Academy of Management Journal.

View Jennifer’s full biography

James Hand (1994)

James Hand

James Hand is a data scientist, tech for good entrepreneur and carbon footprint specialist, who co-founded Giki with his wife Jo in 2017, to help people live more sustainably. Giki, a social enterprise based in the UK, has created an employee sustainability programme to help people understand and reduce the environmental impacts of their own lifestyles combining a detailed carbon footprint model with hundreds of steps that people can take to cut their carbon emissions.

Before setting up Giki James worked for 20 years in fund management and was co-CIO at Investec Asset Management, where he gained extensive experience in behavioural science, quantitative finance and co-founded the business’ ESG team. James has worked with various academics, including Dr Richard Carmichael, on the role that individuals can play in a Net Zero world and guest lectured on behavioural finance and personal carbon footprints.

Catriona McGill (2010)

Catriona McGill

Catriona is Head of Operations at Desolenator. Desolenator is a clean-tech start-up that has developed a novel solar-powered desalination technology. She is responsible for overseeing all projects at Desolenator and supporting the technical strategy of the company.

Previously, she worked as a Consultant at a boutique strategy consulting firm focused on the energy sector, and as an Engineer for a specialist structural engineering company. Catriona is a STEMnet ambassador, speaking at local schools to promote careers in STEM. She holds an MEng in Manufacturing Engineering from the University of Cambridge (Trinity Hall).


David Metcalfe (1996)

David MetcalfeDavid is the CEO of Verdantix and co-founded the firm in 2008. Based on his 20 years of experience in technology strategy and research roles he provides guidance on digital strategies to C-level executives at technology providers, partners at private equity firms and function heads at large corporations. His current focus is on helping clients understand their market opportunity tied to ESG investment trends and their impact on corporate sustainability strategies.

During his 12 years running Verdantix – including 4 leading the New York office – he has helped dozens of clients grow their businesses through fund raising, acquisitions and international growth. David was previously SVP Research at Forrester and Head of Analysis & Forecasting at BT. He holds a PhD from Cambridge University and also worked as a Research Associate at the Harvard Business School.

Andy Williams (1983)

Catriona McGill

After graduating Trinity Hall in the mid 80’s Andy joined Ernst & Young and completed his ACA at the London office before being transferred to the San Jose, California office in 1991.  What was initially a 2 year secondment turned into 28 years in the Bay Area working at some well-known places like Stanford University and Ducati, followed by a variety of startup companies which proved to be Andy’s sweet spot.

He is now working as CFO at Ampersand, a startup based in Rwanda, which is aiming to transform the 5M moto taxi driver market in East Africa to electric over this coming decade.


How to register

Online: Click here to book online.

By email: Contact with your name and how you are affiliated with the College. If you are an alumnus/alumna of the College, please include your matriculation year.

Please register no later than midday on Monday 1 November.


If you have any questions, contact Liz Pentlow on or +44 (0)1223 332567 or if you have any questions about events in general, they may be answered at

A donation to support our students

There is no charge to attend the webinar, however we would be incredibly grateful if you would consider donating what you may have spent on a drink on a night out to our student support funds. Donations help students facing unexpected financial challenges, particularly following the pandemic. No gift is too small as collectively we can make a huge difference to our students. Thank you.

During a period when so much has been uncertain and stressful, it has been so helpful to have had financial support. It has made it possible for me to really focus on my studies. Thank you so much!” Trinity Hall undergraduate

When you complete the booking form, please consider donating the cost of a drink from the Aula Bar:

£2.00 Cappuccino | £3.80 Trinity Hall Ale | £2.50 Pint of Lager

£3.00 Gin | £6.90 Bottle of wine | £18.20 a round of all the above