Senior Manager, Economic Transformation  
Decarbonization & the Just Transition  

An urban planner by training, and an economic developer by trade, George Benson is Senior Manager, Economic Transformation at the Vancouver Economic Commission, supporting businesses and workers in their efforts to decarbonize and prosperously reach net-zero by 2050. George manages VEC’s Zero Emissions Economic Transition Action Plan (ZEETAP) and oversees the BC Heat Pump Technology Attraction Strategy and VEC’s climate action and workforce development work.  

George brings unique experience from the public, private, and nonprofit sectors, together with deep content knowledge in resilience, urban sustainability, global governance, and new economic systems. He works with individual businesses, industry associations, building code developers, global businesses and networks, and researchers on numerous capacity building, coordination, and market transformation initiatives.  

Outside of VEC, George is co-founder and chair of the Climate Displacement Planning Initiative, a BC-based nonprofit working to support those at risk of or currently undergoing, displacement due to climate change. George has previously been involved in the leadership of the US and Canadian urban planning associations and was a member of the World Economic Forum’s Global Commission on biodiversity in cities. In 2017, he was recognised by the City of Vancouver with its Award of Excellence for his work on building sustainability and resilience in the community.