John Thwaites is a Professorial Fellow, Monash University, and Chair of the Monash Sustainable Development Institute and ClimateWorks Australia. He is the Interim Chair of the McKinnon Institute for Political Leadership.
John is Chair of Melbourne Water and a Director of Fairtrade Australia New Zealand. He has been Chair of the Australian Building Codes Board, President of the Australian Centre for the Moving Image (ACMI) and a director of the Australian Green Building Council.
He is a Co-Chair of the Leadership Council of the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network (“SDSN”) launched by the Secretary General of the United Nations to provide expert advice and support to the development and implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals. He is also the Chair of the SDSN Association, which operates the SDSN network around the world.
In 2020, John was appointed to the Lancet Covid-19 Commission which aims to speed up global, equitable and lasting solutions to the pandemic.
In 2013, John was named as one of the 100 Global Sustainability Leaders by ABC Carbon Express. In 2015, he was awarded the “Planning Champion” award by the Planning Institute of Australia and in 2016 was awarded the Richard J Evans Award for excellence in recognition of outstanding contributions to planning in Victoria.
John was appointed Member of the Order of Australia for “significant service to the environment and to the people and Parliament of Victoria” in the 2021 Australia Day Honours.
John Thwaites was Deputy Premier of Victoria from 1999 until his retirement in 2007. During this period he held various Ministerial portfolios including Minister of Health, Minister of Environment and was Victoria’s first Minister for Climate Change. In these portfolios he was responsible for major reforms in social policy, health, environment and water.