Sir Tim Smit is executive vice-chair and co-founder of the multi award-winning Eden Project in Cornwall. He is an archaeologist, anthropologist, and spent ten years in the music industry as a producer and composer, receiving seven platinum and gold discs.
Since opening Eden in 2001, over 23 million people have visited the once sterile pit, transformed into a cradle of life containing world-class horticulture and startling architecture symbolic of human endeavour. The Eden Project has also hosted major national events, including Live 8 Africa Calling in 2005 and the G7 in 2021.
Tim has been fascinated by regeneration for the last 30 years. In 1990 he “discovered” and then restored The Lost Gardens of Heligan with John Nelson, where he remains a director. It is now one of the UK’s best loved gardens having been named Garden of the Year in 2018, and Tim’s book The Lost Gardens of Heligan won Book of the Year in 1997.
As a capitalist Tim has been searching for mechanisms that enable business to be a genuine driver of wealth through nesting a wide range of stakeholders’ interests alongside our own in a circular system. Today there are 20 ‘New Edens’ being built worldwide, all with the same mission–to restore wild sites, nurture communities and bring once dilapidated environments back to life.