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Centre for Building Sustainable Value

Faizan Basharullah

 

I’m an international student originally from Karachi, Pakistan who has lived in seven cities across six countries across three continents. I believe this exposure to a variety of different cultures and backgrounds has equipped me with perseverance and an ability to adapt to different situations. I studied cognitive psychology in my first two years at Western, and outside of the classroom, I have been actively involved with Western’s entrepreneurship space as well as spearheading Ivey’s recently founded One for the World chapter. In my free time, I enjoy boxing and watching my LA Lakers wreak havoc across the NBA.

 

What is your personal definition of sustainability?

My personal definition of sustainability is centered on living within the boundaries of our natural systems or environment and ensuring that our lifestyles do not harm or intrude on society and culture.

 

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

A decade from now, I see myself returning to East Africa and getting involved with infrastructure investing. Building sustainable infrastructure is critical to Africa’s socioeconomic prosperity in the future, especially as the continent tackles unprecedented population growth and the unbundling of latent consumer demand.

Because I see myself leading my own fund, I very much need to learn how to channel sustainability as a fundamental part of my organization’s culture. I want sustainability to always be top-of-mind amongst the people I hope to one day lead, and to engrain sustainability in an industry in which it is typically an afterthought.

I think implementing processes directed towards living more sustainably is becoming more and more commonplace but learning how to think sustainability is still a rarity. I think this certificate program is a fantastic way to develop that mode of thinking.

 

What sustainability projects have you been engaged in?

I have been involved in several sustainability projects throughout high school and university. Most recently, I have been focusing my efforts on wildlife conservation. My interest in wildlife conservation was sparked after I wrote a research article discussing how a combination of legalizing trade and enforcing strict regulation of supply chains could decrease rhino poaching. I love rhinos, and I’m an Ambassador for Save the Rhino International.

Last summer, I spent a month in the Mara Naboisho Conservancy in Kenya with an organization called African Impact where I volunteered for a big cat conservation project. It was one of the most valuable experiences of my life and simply strengthened my passion for the protection of the world’s precious wildlife. I now serve as an Ambassador for African Impact and may be returning this April for a turtle conservation project in the Seychelles.  

I’m also an analyst for the Ivey Energy and Resources Club, and recently wrote an article about the need for greater adoption of data-providing technologies to enable fundamental changes in water pricing frameworks that help increase infrastructure longevity and consequently help alleviate Canada’s water crisis.

Faizan Basharullah

Faizan Basharullah