The first man to walk unsupported to both Poles. Sustainability & Leadership
Robert Swan is a polar explorer, environmentalist and the first man ever to walk unsupported to both the North and South Poles.
He compares his icy experiences to boardroom manoeuvres and his inspirational addresses have received the acclaim of discerning audiences worldwide. His contribution to education and the environment have been recognized through his appointment as UN Goodwill Ambassador for Youth, a Visiting Professorship of the School of Environment at Leeds University and in 1994 he became Special Envoy to the Director General of UNESCO.
He was awarded the OBE in 1995. In 2003 and 2004, Robert and his company, 2041, delivered the first ever corporate Antarctic Expeditions on teamwork and leadership. Through positive participation and real missions, the unique insights and lessons he has learned, have enabled Robert Swan to educate and stimulate his audiences.
Robert Swan has earned his place alongside the great explorers and adventurers that have tested their physical and mental strength to the limit in the planet’s most hostile environments.
As with the great explorers and adventurers in history, Robert Swan is the first man in history to walk to both the North and South Poles. The successful completion of his North and South Pole expeditions marked the beginning of a new phase in his life.
On both expeditions, he experienced, firsthand, the effects of environmental damage on the Polar icecaps. This shaped Swan’s lifetime goal – to work for the preservation of the Antarctic as the last great wilderness on earth. He then founded 2041, an organization dedicated to this goal. With his presence and integrity, accomplishments and reflections, Robert Swan has an extraordinary ability to move people and motivate audiences.
It is through his expeditions and lectures that Swan works to inform, engage and inspire the next generation of leaders to take responsibility, be sustainable, and know that now is the time for action in policy development, sustainable business generation and future technologies.
"If you have a heartbeat, you will be inspired by Robert Swan. Whether talking to C-suite executives or rising stars, Swan is uniquely poised to inspire people to stretch their ideas about what is possible— then to dig deep to achieve the extraordinary. He doesn’t just change people’s ideas: he changes their lives."
"Shell staff have participated in 2041 expeditions since 2009 and we have been pleased to have Robert Swan visit us as a speaker on more than one occasion. He and the 2041 team offer a unique proposition for business; real world awareness, advice and guidance blended with pragmatism and a strong sense of environmental stewardship."
"Hands down, Rob was one of the best speakers at LESA 2013 in Kuala Lumpur. His personal energy and indomitable spirit is manifest in Project 2041, and continues to be a beacon for environmental protection for the last bastion of wilderness on earth."
"As the founder of the Kellogg Innovation Network (KIN) at the Kellogg School of Management, I’ve seen hundreds of speakers at events worldwide. In all of my travels, I have not seen or worked with a speaker with more authenticity, energy and ethical power than Robert Swan. I’ve hired Robert twice for our global corporate clients, and Robert has graciously provided his magic for our University on a number of occasions. If you’re looking for depth and insight followed by a standing ovation, hire Robert Swan."