From Greenpeace director to green developer



Jane Attenborough Studio

In 1989, as managing director of Greenpeace, Jonathan Smales oversaw the refurbishment of a 1920s animal testing laboratory, which became the charity’s new HQ. Naturally, the ambition was to create London’s first green commercial building – despite no one quite knowing what a green building was at the time.

More than 30 years on, developers are at pains to emphasise their green credentials – but how many truly sustainable homes, offices and neighbourhoods are actually being built? In this talk, Jonathan will discuss how a lifelong interest in urbanism, architecture and sustainability has led him to believe in the power of place – and why breakthrough models of development are needed to tackle the climate crisis.