30 Seconds with John Hardy NOW talks to the founder of The Green School

30 Seconds with John Hardy


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In our monthly Q&A with people leading the way in sustainability NOW talks to John Hardy, designer and founder of The Green School in Bali which teaches sustainability to young people. It opened in September 2008 with 90 students on a campus carved out of the jungle and rice fields – it now has 400 students and an inspirationally holistic, student-guided approach. Find out more.

One word that describes you?


In your own words, what do you do?

Connect, inspire and innovate.

What inspired you to start The Green School?

Al Gore’s ‘Inconvenient Truth’ – I saw it with my wife Cynthia in 2006 and we were compelled to take up his call to action, so we left our jewellery business and got to work. After years of homeschooling, we wanted our daughters to attend a ‘real’ school that we believed in, a school that we would want to attend. I had also just read Alan Wagstaff’s ‘Three Springs’, and was so inspired by the dream I decided to build it in Bali.

What do you enjoy most about your work?

Action. Our mission is to create a community of learners who make our world sustainable. We focus on community-integrated, entrepreneurial learning in a wall-less, natural environment.

What do you enjoy the least?


Who is your greatest influence?

Steve Jobs.

Best advice you’ve been given?

You can’t win every battle but you can win the war.

What was your Plan B?

Composting. Seems better than cremation.

Your personal indulgence?


Favourite sustainable hotel or other place to stay?

BAMBU Indah, our own radically distinctive boutique hotel in Ubud.

What steps do you take to make your life more sustainable?

I do everything I can to be carbon neutral.

Any regrets so far?


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