S2, E2: Can Venture Capital Help Biodiversity In The Built Environment With Margarita Skarkou

todayJanuary 24, 2023


S2, Episode 2: Can Venture Capital Help Biodiversity in the Built Environment with Margarita Skarkou?

Plus Fintan Damer of Mott MacDonald Talks About the Importance of Education

As part of the Biodiversity in the Built Environment month, we investigate the urgently needed good that venture capital can do in an interview with Margarita Skarkou of 2150 VC. Plus we talk to Fintan Damer of Mott MacDonald about the urgent need for biodiversity education.

Margarita Skarkou, ClimateTech VC @ 2150 | Non Executive @ Innovate UK – UKRI Credit Committee | Top 30 Women in the City Brummel | Newton Fellow

Working with founders to scale solutions and companies that can have a measurable impact and create more resilient, sustainable, healthy and equitable cities is the single most exciting mission of our time. I am optimistic about technology and humanity’s ability to alter the current climate change and ecosystem degradation trajectory.”

Margarita has spent the last ten years working across the construction, international development and finance sectors.

Prior to joining 2150 she was a VP in the Sustainable Impact Capital team at Barclays, leading investments in sustainable tech businesses. While at Barclays, she co-founded Barclays Ventures, a corporate innovation / CVC business unit where she led on ESG and wellbeing investments.

Margarita is an active angel, business advisor and scout for FiveThirteen, which showcases female founders in cleantech. She is also currently a Non-Executive Credit Committee member at UKRI – Innovate UK, NERC ‘Economics of Biodiversity’ and ‘Quality of Urban Environments with Nature Connectedness and Health’ delegate and Advisory Board member for the Next Generation NED Network.

Margarita graduated with a MEng Civil Engineering degree from the University of Edinburgh and is a CIMA certified Business Accountant.

Her personal commitment to sustainability in 2022 is to avoid buying a car despite having a baby and use reusable/biodegradable nappies!

Follow Margarita on LinkedIn

Fintan Damer, Ecologist, Mott MacDonald

Fintan Damer is a practicing Ecologist working for one of the world’s leading engineering and environmental consultancies, Mott MacDonald.

Although he has been working as an ecologist for the past number of years, Fintan has a wide breadth of knowledge and understanding in other related areas of environmental science.

Previously Fintan worked in the wider horticulture industry where he accumulated over 30 years of experience working in various sectors of the industry including private commercial operations, public sector local authorities, and as a self-employed landscape contractor and garden designer.

His lifelong passion for nature has lead him to question many aspects of operational norms in land use industries, not least those that are perhaps questionably considered ‘green’ or ‘sustainable’.

Although primarily operating as a consultant ecologist, Fintan is still intrinsically linked to the landscape industry, not least through his involvement with the Garden and Landscape designers Association (IRL).

He sees his combined occupational functions as a means to bringing about the routine integration of nature and nature-based solutions into all aspects of landscape manipulation, including public amenity and commercial uses, flood control, climate resilience, agricultural exploitations and biodiversity restoration.

Follow Fintan on LinkedIn

Written by: Jackie De Burca

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