Dr. Assheton Stewart Carter

assheton carter

Dr. Assheton Carter is a recognized expert on sustainable business strategy, social and environmental standards and ethical sourcing. He has dedicated his career to positioning socially committed businesses to create and capture financial value through positive social impact.

Dr. Carter draws on a background that encompasses financial management, strategy consulting and non-profit management in international development and conservation. Many emerging economies are largely dependent upon mining and hydrocarbon policy development. Consequently, Dr. Carter has launched and led conservation and “best practices” initiatives with the oil, gas and mining industries. He has helped leaders from Chevron, ExxonMobil, Shell and Statoil and DeBeers, Alcoa, Xstrata, Newmont and RioTinto develop environmental policies, strategies and tools for environmental assessment and risk management.


Working with the largest retailer in the world, Dr. Carter conceived the first fully traceable line of gold and diamond jewelry. His success in bringing together suppliers, mining companies and civil society partners enabled Wal-Mart to bring its Love, Earth line to market in 2008. This jewelry uses only gold and diamonds sourced from mines and manufacturers that are leaders in responsible business practices. This pioneering effort led to work with the luxury brand Cartier to directly source gold from “ethical” mines. Dr. Carter is currently working on the traceability of ‘conflict-free’ metals from the Congo for use by electronics manufacturers in Europe and the U.S.A.

He has facilitated the development of socially responsible supply chains for Starbucks and McDonalds and his expertise in sustainable business practices has enabled companies as diverse as Disney, Fiji Water, Marriott and United Airlines to develop leading environmental and forest-based carbon offset strategies. Dr. Carter established and leads the REDD+ program at Pact, which aims to incorporate community rights and development into REDD projects globally through working with developers and influencing policy makers.

He has contributed to social and environmental standards development and participated in dialogues of the Alliance for Responsible Mining; International Council on Mining and Metals; International Union for the Conservation of Nature; Responsible Jewelry Council; IPIECA, the global oil and gas industry association for environmental and social issues; the Global Reporting Initiative; the Global Compact; the Electronics Industry Citizenship Coalition; Aluminium Stewardship Exploratory Workshop; the Climate, Community and Biodiversity Alliance and, the Voluntary Principles of Security of Human Rights – for which he sits on the steering committee. He conceived and led the Energy and Biodiversity Initiative and the Business and Biodiversity Offset Program, which built social and environmental guidelines for industry practitioners.

Dr. Carter has also worked to set robust sustainable development guidelines with financial institutions such as ABNAMRO, Bank of America, Citigroup, Inter-American Development Bank, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the International Finance Corporation, and the World Bank. As well, he has been influential in setting criteria used by the socially responsible investment and mainstream investment community including Insight Investment and Henderson’s Investors.

His work has taken him to more than 50 countries.  He has participated in missions to promote best practices for resource management and human and economic development to the political leadership of Ghana, Iceland, Madagascar, Peru and Suriname.

He has established a wide sphere of influence by publishing more than 20 articles and book chapters on extractive industries and sustainable development. He has served on the advisory boards to large-scale extractive projects in Ghana (submerged timber), Iceland (aluminum), Madagascar (mineral sands), Honduras (Gold) and Peru (copper), and on non-profit, corporate advisory and editorial boards.