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University of Northampton hosts “Conscious Capitalism” forum for local businesses

News Page 25th March 2019

The potential of business to make a positive impact on the world was the topic of discussion among leading Northamptonshire organisations at the inaugural Lord-Lieutenant’s Leaders’ Forum.

Held at the University of Northampton on Tuesday evening (March 19) and organised by University Governor Nicholas Robertson and Senior Lecturer Adrian Pryce – both Deputy Lieutenants for the county – the event welcomed more than 60 companies including Mercedes AMG, Metro Bank, Bambino Mio, Barclays and Weetabix as well as local public and charity sector leaders.

The delegates came together to learn about Conscious Capitalism, a movement for business to look beyond financial gain to explore intellectual, social, cultural and ecological change. The key note speaker was Timothy Henry, a CEO of global consultancy Bridge Consulting who has been involved with the Conscious Capitalism movement from its beginning more than a decade ago and who is the co-author of “The Conscious Capitalism Field Guide” from Harvard Business Press.

The Lord-Lieutenant David Laing, who is also the Pro Chancellor of the University, commented: “The University of Northampton is renowned for its focus on social change, and as the county’s only university we were proud and delighted to host this first Lord-Lieutenant’s Leaders’ Forum around such a valuable topic. The discussion points that were raised around the need for a more conscientious approach to business really resonated with those who attended, who are also those best placed to spearhead revolutionary change in how we think about capitalism. I look forward to developing the theme of the evening to help bring business and the community even closer together for greater ‘collective impact’ in enhancing the social as well economic wellbeing of the county.”

Keynote speaker Timothy Henry said “I was delighted with the energy and enthusiasm among the audience, which, with such a forward-thinking University, bodes well for Northamptonshire’s business and community relations.”

The event was sponsored by Grant Thornton – the world’s seventh largest professional services network of independent accounting and consulting member firms – and global chemical company Scott Bader.  Mike Hughes, Director of Corporate Finance at Grant Thornton added “It was great to be a part of the team bringing so many of the local business, professional and academic community together for such an interesting event. In a market with so much change and uncertainty, it’s vital that this group works closely together for the benefit of the local economy and community, and as Grant Thornton, we look forward to playing our role to the full.”

The CEO of Scott Bader Jean-Claude Pierre commented that it was a “A truly inspiring event to discuss what is probably the most fundamental mind shift needed to give a future to the human species on this planet, let alone run a successful business.”

Professor Nick Petford, the University’s Vice Chancellor, added “This successful event is exactly the sort of thing that universities should be doing, and that the University of Northampton does so well – facilitating thought leadership and bringing the private, public and charity sectors closer together for social as well as economic benefit.”

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