Rees, William E.



Prof. William E. Rees is an ecologist and ecological economist who researches humanity’s behavioural, neuro-cognitive and cultural barriers to sustainability. He is Professor Emeritus and former Director of School of Community and Regional Planning at the University of British Columbia; Founding member and former President of the Canadian Society for Ecological Economics; Founding Director of the One Earth Initiative; Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada; and Fellow of the Post-Carbon Institute.

Prof. Rees is originator and co-developer (together with Mathis Wackernagel) of ‘ecological footprint analysis’ (EFA). Widely adopted for sustainability assessments worldwide, EFA is arguably the world’s best-known [un]sustainability indicator. Rees has won several awards including the Blue Planet Prize and Boulding Prize in Ecological Economics (jointly with Dr Wackernagel) in 2012 and the Herman Daly Award in Ecological Economics in 2015. He was named one of British Columbia’s top public intellectuals by the Vancouver Sun in 2000.