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Green Entrepreneurship in Action: A Learning Journey for Ethical Business Pioneers

October 2013 – April 2014 (Residential Intensive: 21st October – 25th October 2013)

With the Dartington School for Social Entrepreneurs

Tim Mac Macartney (Embercombe), Tony Kendle (Eden Project), Satish Kumar (Schumacher College), Chris Nichols (Ashridge Business School), Guy Watson (Riverford), Stef van Dongen – (CEO of Enviu), Jane Corbett – (Generative Leadership Programme), Li An Phoa, Jay Tompt, Dirk Rohwedder (DSSE), and Toni Spencer

This course is open for bookings.

“We have tens of thousands of abandoned homes without people and tens of thousands of abandoned people without homes. We have failed bankers advising failed regulators on how to save failed assets. We are the only species on the planet without full employment. Brilliant. We have an economy that tells us that it is cheaper to destroy earth in real time rather than renew, restore, and sustain it. You can print money to bail out a bank but you can’t print life to bail out a planet. At present we are stealing the future, selling it in the present, and calling it GDP. We can just as easily have an economy that is based on healing the future instead of stealing it. We can either create assets for the future or take the assets of the future. One is called restoration and the other exploitation. And whenever we exploit the earth we exploit people and cause untold suffering. Working for the earth is not a way to get rich, it is a way to be rich.” (Paul Hawken from his 2009 Commencement Address)

We need a new breed of enterprises, able to address these complex relationships between social justice, environmental sustainability and economic viability. We need people able to step up and model new ways of doing business, and we need them to work together in the midst of a confluence of crises.

Delivered by the Dartington School for Social Entrepreneurs in the rich learning environment of Schumacher College, this course is for experienced business leaders and aspiring ethical entrepreneurs. You may be developing a new project or want to focus on a particular aspect of your current enterprise. You may be asking:

Drawing on the experience of both organisations, visiting experts and making full use of the participants collective resources, this course will provide a stimulating environment to explore these and other questions.

Green Entrepreneurship in Action is a six month action-learning journey and includes a one week residential intensive at Schumacher College. It aims to provide the practical support and deep inquiry that can help move you and your work forward.

Course detail

The green entrepreneur sees opportunities where others see complexity and challenge. The green entrepreneur sees our current climate of disconnection as a chance to be of service and bring their gifts to the world. The green entrepreneur builds resilience by freely traversing the boundaries between radical and mainstream ideas; between certainty and mystery and between the personal and collective journeys of our times.

Hosted by The School for Social Entrepreneurs and delivered at Schumacher College, this course is set in the context of many years of expertise in transformational learning for sustainable futures. It builds on previous successful courses: Doing Business for Good – Green Entrepreneurship in Action and
Ethical Pioneers: an interactive masterclass for the new entrepreneur

The course will offer you the opportunity to get focused, reflect deeply with a community of peers and expert witnesses and test your ideas with a diverse group of successful social entrepreneurs and supportive champions.

Alongside a clear focus on your specific needs as project leader, we will collectively explore questions such as:

Through the course you will be able to:

Who is this course for?

This course is designed for enterprising individuals who finally want to put their passion for change at the heart of what they do, whether they have been in business for years or are ready to turn their ideas into action and start a new enterprise.

You may be already experienced in mainstream business and wish to move into the world of sustainability or green enterprise. Or your experience may lie more in the world of activism, NGOs, not-for-profit or community work and you wish to set up a successful new enterprise and appeal to a wider audience. This course is suitable for people working in all sectors or as independents.
If you think you may be suitable but would like to talk to someone in greater detail, please contact

How does it work?

The programme design follows the innovative and proven methodologies of the SSE Action Learning Model and will be embedded within Schumacher College’s holistic learning community. Elements include:

Pre-reading and other foundational content:

There will be course content sent to you on signing up and two weeks before the residential intensive.

Residential Intensive:

During this week we will combine a dynamic range of activities including talks, practical workshops, Q+A with expert witnesses; building the learning community, time in your action learning set, field trips and experiential learning.

Action Learning Sets:

You will be in a small group of your fellow participants with a facilitator where you will be supported to deepen your learning, to take action and to embed the teaching in your professional practice. These will happen in person and via the online learning element of the course. You will have two sessions during the residential and a further three virtual meetings throughout the online learning time.

Online learning course content and facilitation: For the five months following the residential intensive there will be three on-line group sessions for approximately three hours each. These will include input from expert witnesses; facilitated inquiry and experiential learning for the whole group, small group break out sessions and more.


Tim ‘Mac’ Macartney – Embercombe

Tim is the founder of Embercombe, a charity and social enterprise established to champion a way of living that celebrates the opportunities inherent in this challenging time and that inspires people to contribute energetically towards the emergence of a socially just, environmentally sustainable and spiritually fulfilling human presence on earth. In 1983 Mac was the gardener at a management training centre. By 1987 he was the Head of consultancy at the same place, and two years later had his own London-based people and organisation development consultancy. With the skilled and highly creative involvement of a very dedicated team, this consultancy was later expanded into Russia and Poland. In 1997 after guiding a successful culture change project over a four-year period, Mac’s client offered him the financial means to purchase land and make a dream come true. Embercombe was purchased in April 1999 although it wasn’t until 2006 that the website was hoisted and the gates fully opened.

Over a period of twenty years Mac was mentored and coached by Native American metis ‘Medicine’ people to learn the Earth wisdom that once informed all indigenous peoples, including those of Britain. During this training and ever since he has attempted to bring two worlds together – an ancient world view that emphasises relationship, interdependence, and reverence for life with the huge challenges and equally huge opportunities of the 21st Century. Mac’s work with organisation leaders was motivated by his belief that it was in the world of business that he could exercise his skills to greatest effect for the benefit of future generations. He later modified this position to include people, young and old, privileged and disadvantaged, under-employed and over-employed. Mac’s book Finding Earth, Finding Soul – the invisible path to authentic leadership speaks to the necessity for each of us to gather our courage and step out of the shadows and become the leaders ‘we have been waiting for’.

Tony Kendle – Eden Regeneration Ltd

Tony was part of the Development Team from 1996 but joined Eden full time in September 2000 and was appointed Foundation Director in October 2001.

As Foundation Director his responsibilities include strategic development of the meaning of the project, overseeing the education programme (schools and public), science outreach and horticulture. Prior to joining Eden he was a staff member at the University of Reading School of Plant Sciences.

He has worked as a researcher and consultant, both in the UK and overseas, specialising in nature conservation, horticulture and the restoration of degraded lands.

Satish Kumar – Schumacher College

Satish is a former monk and long-term peace and environment activist. He has been quietly setting the Global Agenda for change for over 50 years. He was just nine when he left his family home to join the wandering Jains and 18 when he decided he could achieve more back in the world, campaigning for land reform in India. In 1973 Satish settled in the United Kingdom taking up the post of editor of Resurgence magazine, a position he has held ever since, making him the UK’s longest-serving editor of the same magazine. During this time, he has been the guiding spirit behind a number of now internationally respected ecological and educational ventures including Schumacher College. Read more

Chris Nichols – Ashridge Business School

Chris is a consultant with over 25 years of experience in creative group work. He has been with Ashridge for nine years, and co-directs the strategy engagement group. He is an accredited Ashridge coach. He has worked globally with almost every sector: government, charity and commercial. He currently specialises in board level facilitation and the design and facilitation of large group explorative learning. Chris embraces innovative styles of work. He is co-founder of, developed to allow non-verbal exploration of complex issues. Creativity, writing, poetry and art all find a place in his way of working. Chris is a widely requested and provocative keynote speaker across the domains of strategic thinking, deep risk and creative leadership responses. A close associate of Schumacher College, Chris is dedicated to facilitating and developing profound examination of the role of leaders and organisations in working in right relationship with the natural world.

Guy Watson Founder of Riverford Organics

Guy was born and raised at Riverford Farm as one of five children, all five of whom are today running food businesses from the farm. After a short spell working as a marketing consultant in London and New York he returned to the farm to start Riverford Organic Vegetables in 1986. The business has grown from three acres and a wheel barrow, over 23 years, to a business employing 400 staff with sales of £35 million.

A vegetable box scheme was started in 1993 as a means of escaping the grasp of the supermarkets and now delivers to 45,000 households a week and represents 95% of sales. But growth is not everything; Guy is sceptical of the benefits of scale and has built a business based on long-term co-operation with growers and joint ventures at a local level enabling national delivery but from six regional farms, normally with 75 miles of the customer.

Guy is an enthusiast for co-operation, collaboration and profit sharing in business. Riverford is committed to progressively moving to employee ownership rather than the more conventional entrepreneurial exits.

Read his full profile here >>

Jane Corbett – Founder of Generative Leadership Programme

Jane is an international leadership development consultant, speaker, tutor, facilitator and coach. She created the Generative Leadership Programme in 2010. She works with people and organisations to achieve their full potential to lead and learn at times of change and transition, including working collectively on local and global sustainability challenges.

She designs and delivers workshops in collaboration with a number of UK and international organisations. Working with mindfulness, embodied leadership, Theory U practices for deep innovation, accessing creativity and collective intelligence, systems thinking and scenarios based practices in workshop design. She is a member of the Global Presencing Community and the Authentic Leadership in Action Institute.

Visit for a full profile.

Stef van Dongen – CEO of Enviu

Stef is an impact-driven entrepreneur who holds a master’s in business administration from the Rotterdam School of Management. He is the founder and the CEO of Enviu – innovators in sustainability. Enviu starts companies that are aimed to create large positive social and environmental impact. Enviu does this with the power of the crowd. Thousands of people around the world collaborate with Enviu to co-create impact-driven business concepts and actively bring them to the market.

Stef introduced the concept of “The Economy of the Crowd.” An economy that is driven by young innovative entrepreneurs that want to make meaning, are transparent and share to create maximum social and environmental impact. Companies that drive the Economy of the Crowd provide products and services that create access to quality of life for as many people as possible in a sustainable way.

Stef is advisor to several organisations regarding the economy of the crowd, impact-driven entrepreneurship and impact-investing.

ENVIU – Stef Van Dongen, founder and CEO of ENVIU, an organisation that starts companies that are aimed to create large positive social and environmental impact. Enviu does this with the power of the crowd. HOLLAND

Li An Phoa

Li An Phoa is a passionate systems-thinker engaged in research, holistic learning and creation for sustainable food, water, and vital living. She explores how we can embody and live together in the Earth-Body with our selves, each other and all other living systems. She has three master degrees in Business Administration, Holistic Science and Philosophy and lived seven years as a nomad. Since 2005, she teaches an outdoors course ‘Companies in Ecologies’ that she co-designed at the Rotterdam School of Management. She researches responsible business practices, e.g. preparing Unilever’s ‘Sustainable Living Plan’ and studying the impact of dairy and beef for the Sustainable Agriculture Initiative Platform, and designing Vital Systems’ Good Food Web. In 2012, she co-founded Spring College teaching hundreds of people outdoors about ecology and economy; our daily lives and visions for the world.

Watch this video clip to get an impression of what she means with ‘Learning to Live Together’. Visit with her Beautiful Earth Action & Research (BEAR) work on

Jay Tompt

Jay is a ‘green’ business leader, writer, and activist. His current work focuses on linking new theoretical approaches to enterprise and community-led economics to practical action.

He is also involved in a range of local business and economic development initiatives including the REconomy Project, Transition Town Totnes, the Transition Free Press, Big Green Canoe, and consultancy William Verde & Associates. Jay was co-founder and vice president of Plan-It Hardware™, the first independent comprehensive ethical products distributor in the US home improvement industry. He also has an MBA from the Monterey Institute of International Studies and a BA in Philosophy from San Jose State University.

Dirk Rohwedder – DSSE

Dirk is Head of the Dartington School for Social Entrepreneurs. Upon graduating as a master potter, Dirk moved from Germany to England to manage a pottery training and production workshop for the Camphill Village Trust. To expand on its success and to explore ways to make his work more publicly accessible he founded and led Taurus Crafts, an arts and craft centre and visitor attraction in the Forest of Dean, in 1995. Over the next 14 years Dirk developed the centre into a very successful craft hub, tourism and events business and social enterprise. In 2009 he left Taurus Crafts to become Business Development Manager at RISE, the social enterprise network support organisation for South West England, where he lead the national rollout of the Social Enterprise Mark,, an ethical branding concept and fair-trade logo for companies. In 2010 Dirk joined the Dartington SSE team as Programme Consultant and in June 2011 became head of school with a remit to expand the reach and scope of the work. His leadership led to courses now being delivered across the South West.

Having graduated with an MSc in Sustainability and Responsibility from Ashridge Business School in May 2012, Dirk is now working with Schumacher College and the Transition Network to develop training courses for the sustainable entrepreneur.

Toni Spencer

Toni is a facilitator, mentor and creative consultant working in the field of sustainability and culture change.

She was on the faculty at Schumacher College for 4 years where she ran innovative courses such as Ethical Pioneers: An interactive master class for the new entrepreneur?; The Schumacher Certificate in Education for Sustainability and Ecological Facilitation: A Gritty and Creative Approach to Leadership. Toni now works with a number of organizations including Encounters Arts, Embercombe and Transition.

Over the years Toni has worked with enterprises at the cutting edge of culture, creativity and sustainability and has a particular passion for supporting other change agents to deepen their journey of inner and outer change. She brings a wide range of facilitation and creative skills to working with any learning journey ensuring a rich and challenging experience where the personal, the professional and the practical are all brought in to focus. Through her facilitation, participants are often invited to dive in to the unknown in order to allow for insight, innovation and collaboration to arise.

Previously she worked as a Lecturer in Eco Design at Goldsmiths, as a sustainability consultant with organizations including the Social Venture Network, Forum For the Future and Wink Media; and as one of the founding editors of Wallpaper* Magazine. She is a Trustee of RSPOPUK.

She holds a MSc in Responsibility and Business Practice from the Centre for Action Research in Professional Practice, University of Bath. Toni is also an artist and wild food forager.

Kate Taylor Hewett

Kate is a coach, action learning set facilitator and trainer who works with people who want to bring what is important to them into the world through their work. Over the past 8 years she’s worked with many emerging leaders starting up innovative projects and organisations in Devon and worldwide through her own business, Live Your Values, and in conjunction with the Dartington School for Social Entrepreneurs, Schumacher College and The Partnering Initiative. Also a yoga teacher, meditator and amateur natural beekeeper, she brings warmth, creativity and insight to her work. Kate is currently studying for an MSc in Coaching and Mentoring at Sheffield Business School.

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Fees and Accommodation

£1150 All course fees include accommodation, some meals, field trips and all teaching sessions.

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To provisionally reserve a place for 5 days, email us your contact details and the name of the course

We will hold the place for five working days for reservations – three weeks before a course or earlier. After five days we will automatically offer your place to someone else if we have not received your application.

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Schumacher College is part of the Dartington Hall Trust, a company limited by guarantee, registered in England and as a charity (company no. 1485560, charity no. 279756). Registered office: The Elmhirst Centre, Dartington Hall, Totnes, Devon TQ9 6EL, United Kingdom