Skip to Main Content
Centre for Building Sustainable Value

Alex MacDonald

 

Alex is an HBA2 student with a background in finance, accounting, and economics. He is very involved on-campus with executive roles on the Ivey Social Impact Club and the Western Accounting Association. He is also an ambassador for the school as an orientation leader and a campus tour guide. Alex has a passion for sustainability, accounting, and finance. He is very passionate about the cross-section of these three things, and he’s excited to learn more about how these industries are changing to incorporate sustainability. On his free time, he enjoys spending time with friends, playing sports, discovering new music, and playing guitar.

 

What is your personal definition of sustainability?

To me sustainability is the capacity of an organization and/or individual to exist in a way that is beneficial to them and beneficial to the planet. So, a sustainability focused person or company makes decisions while considering the environment. So, instead of choosing the cheapest product they may select one that creates zero waste, or they may select one that was produced locally or in a low emission way.

 

What role do you see sustainability playing in your professional career?

I see sustainability playing a large role in my career, and I see it playing a big role in every career eventually. If you look at any industry there are starting to be sustainable alternative companies emerging. In addition to this, traditional industries are starting to talk more about sustainability, and a lot of companies are making significant investments in more sustainable practices. I’m also taking accounting and finance courses, so my career goal is to find a combination of those things and sustainability. In accounting this could be trying to help redefine annual reporting metrics to include metrics for the societal impact of a company as well as their financial results. The overall philosophy of the finance industry is changing as well, and environmental risks are being priced into valuations, and they’re being considered in the investing philosophies of industry leaders. On a smaller level there are also investors in many areas that are solely focused on a sustainable investing philosophy. I am extremely excited by this intersection of traditional industries and sustainability, so I hope I can play a pivotal role in continuing down that path for whatever organization I work for upon graduation.

 

What sustainability projects have you been engaged in?

I was a section representative with the social impact club this year, and I was able to help with many sustainability events we had. In this role I’ve had the opportunity to be the ambassador of sustainability and social impact within my section. It has also allowed me to participate in many panels, workshops, and a conference. I am also a charity soph and I have had the opportunity to work with sustainable businesses here in London like Urban Roots. Both of these experiences have opened my eyes to the many possibilities for organizations to become more sustainable. I am also currently working as a pro-bono consultant in the Social Impact Club Impact Consulting Project working with a not-for-profit on a new area of their business designed to extend the life of household items and furniture after its occupants pass away. These are the larger projects I’ve been involved in; however, I try to incorporate sustainability in everything I do.

Alex MacDonald

Alex MacDonald