Strategic foresight expert and systems change specialist. A pathfinder for diverse leaders facing disruptive change. 25-year career across multi-system sectors and political perspectives. Innovative futurist, pragmatic idealist, activist, speaker, writer and teacher.
Nicole is an expert in empowering leaders to think differently about the future and create breakthroughs around complex challenges. She has worked with diverse leaders – from across industries, sectors and political perspectives worldwide – to reframe what’s possible and shape a new future. Nicole was named one of the top 10 female futurists worldwide.
Nicole has lead strategy transformation on everything from the future of famine, fashion, to fast-moving goods. She has worked with senior executives and directors in organizations such as: P&G, Dupont, Cargill, Masterfoods, Bunge, L’OREAL, the World Bank, and UNESCO. Nicole has worked with many governments and cities from San Francisco, Detroit to Dubai, and famed research institutions like DARPA.
Nicole also works with smaller, civic sector organizations—from the WaterNow Alliance to urban think-tanks like SPUR—to aboriginal communities like the Haida and Nisga’a Nations in northern British Columbia seeking to reimagine rural resiliency while dealing with systemic trauma.
Recently, Nicole has been involved with the “Regions Rising” initiative with the Office of the Governor of California and was previously co-leader of ConnectSF, a 50-year scenario and vision process for transforming San Francisco’s transportation and land use plans. She worked in venture capital in Singapore in the late 1990s financing digital infrastructure, an early blended finance challenge. Prior to that she was a pollster, market researcher, and political speechwriter in Canada.
Nicole learned her craft at Global Business Network (GBN), a pioneering think-tank in San Francisco, where her mentors were some of the best in the field including Peter Schwartz, author of “The Art of the Long View”, to Stewart Brand and Katherine Fulton, founder of The Monitor Institute.
As a teacher, Nicole is passionate about creating high impact learning experiences for leaders. She has led senior leaders on many “learning journeys” or future immersion experiences in Silicon Valley, Brazil, China, Canada, Mexico, France, Egypt, and India.
Nicole taught at Stanford Business School and was Program Director at CEDEP-INSEAD in Fontainebleau, France. She recently served on the Board of Presidio Graduate School, which pioneered the sustainable MBA.
Nicole earned a B.A and M.A. in public policy and political science from the University of British Columbia (Honours), where her research was on the politics of personal data and the unintended consequences of the network society.
Nicole is an explorer at heart, having lived in Singapore, Paris, San Francisco and India. Originally from Vancouver BC, her hobbies include: sailing (she raced for Canada’s national development team), hiking, reading, writing, and cooking. Nicole is studying Mandarin to keep up with her seven-year old daughter who is fast becoming a native speaker.