Introducing: Tanya Bakker
We regularly introduce one of the ECFG colleagues. This time Tanya Bakker, senior sustainability advisor.
My name is Tanya Bakker, and I was born in Amsterdam. I ended up in Eindhoven to study Applied Physics at TU/e. I was also promoted there. During my student days, I met my husband. I live in Eindhoven with him and our two sons.
The principle of closed cycles
I did my PhD research in collaboration with Philips and is partly based on the measurements in the International Space Station. After that, I started working at Canon in the ‘Research and Development’ department. In the second week at this job, I got inspired by Cradle2Cradle (C2C). The C2C philosophy is the principle of closed cycles. In that I finally saw a way to deal with sustainability in a positive and constructive way. I was excited to be able to focus on Ecodesign and business models in my first 4 years at Canon.
Sustainability and ecodesign
In 2012, it was time for a career change. As a program manager at ‘product safety & environment’ I started working on sustainability and Ecodesign from a policy perspective. This meant that I was mainly active in Brussels and Berlin in the field of legislation and regulations and standards development. In that capacity, I co-authored a number of European standards for material efficiency (EN 4555X series). I also contributed to a handbook for creating designs with recycled plastics.
People, planet, profit
In 2019, I started my own consultancy, 3Penguins, inspired by People, Planet, Profit. With this company, I help translate external policy developments into concrete objectives of companies.
I am also a member of ISO TC 323 ‘circular economy’ and previously active in the ‘measuring circularity’ working group from the NEN. In addition, I chair a working group of a European trade association in Frankfurt. The working group focuses on sustainability policy and advocacy.
In my spare time I like sports and I like to draw, paint and illustrate.
Since when have you been associated with ECFG, and what can one mainly turn to you for?
Since September 2021. I am involved in translating external policies into relevant business criteria for investments and companies. For example, I assess the sustainability of investments and funds. I identify risks and opportunities and convert this into measurable objectives and strategy for ECFG. I help investors with the question ‘how do I check the sustainability of an investment?’ and companies with the question ‘how can I integrate sustainability into my company and earn money with it?’
What are you proud of?
I cannot fight climate change on my own, but I can help a company discover where the opportunities lie, suitable to that company. This allows me to guide companies in the transition from green marketing (aka greenwashing) to real sustainability.
Furthermore, thoroughness, I am a physical engineer by origin and the facts and figures must of course be correct!
What is your motto?
Believe in the power of your ideas, your imagination, the connection with each other to come together for a better world. As Obama put it so beautifully:
‘Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we’ve been waiting for. We are the change that we seek.”
– Barack Obama