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Arthur John Hanson

  • Mentor 2006
  • Alumni
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President and CEO
International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD)

    Art Hanson is a Distinguished Fellow with the International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD) and earlier served as IISD’s president and CEO. He conducts research and provides advisory services on innovation for sustainable development, environment and economy relationships, biodiversity, oceans, and international development. Currently, he is the international chief advisor and a member of the China Council for International Cooperation on Environment and Development. This body provides advice to the State Council and the premier of China.

    Dr. Hanson has a strong interest in linking science to public policy, and has worked with government bodies in Canada, the United States, and Asia on natural resources and environmental management as well as on mechanisms of accountability and governance for sustainable development. Institutional strengthening and capacity-building projects have also been an important focus of his work. A member of the Board of the Indonesian Biodiversity Foundation (KEHATI), Dr. Hanson initiated major environment and development capacity-building efforts in Indonesia, where he worked with the government, nongovernmental organizations, universities, and the private sector. He also served two terms on Canada’s National Round Table on the Environment and Economy and was Canada’s ministerial ocean ambassador with the Department of Fisheries and Oceans for four years. Dr. Hanson was a member of the Canada Foundation for Innovation for a decade and was appointed a mentor for the Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation in 2006. He has provided advice to the Office of the Auditor General of Canada since 1990, and to many other branches of the Canadian Government as well.

    From 1978 to 1991, Dr. Hanson was a professor and the director of the School for Resource and Environmental Studies at Dalhousie University. Dr. Hanson holds a PhD from the University of Michigan in the field of fisheries ecology and natural resources and a master’s degree in zoology/fisheries from the University of British Columbia. He has an honorary doctorate of laws from Mount Allison University and is an officer of the Order of Canada. Arthur Hanson lives in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada.