Pia Heidenmark Cook was named top 10 female leaders in sustainability by WBCSD in 2018, and top 5 influencers on climate change agenda by the Climate Group, as well as top 100 climate influencers on Twitter in 2020.
Pia Heidenmark Cook today enjoys a portfolio career, dividing her time between board, advisory and keynote speaking roles mainly across Europe and North America. She is serving as non-executive director on boards across for-profit and non-profit organizations in healthcare, materials innovation, restaurants, and hospitality sectors. She advises a few professional services and private equity firms on sustainability, and she is also a frequent keynote speaker/lecturer on sustainability and business transformation at e.g., Cambridge Institute for Sustainable Leadership, INSEAD, Boards Impact Forum and ESG/Climate Competent Boards’ Executive Training in addition to a wide variety of corporate events.
Pia held the position of Chief Sustainability Officer (CSO) at IKEA/Ingka Group between 2017-2021, and served as senior advisor post leaving the company. Pia joined IKEA in 2008 and held several senior sustainability positions at the company, and for the last 8 years she was member of the Executive Retail Management Team, the largest business division. During her time as CSO, Pia led a team of sustainability professionals in the global office, as well as sustainability experts integrated across the Retail, Shopping Centre and Customer Fulfilment business across 30 countries in Europe, Asia Pacific and North America.
IKEA is the world’s largest home furnishing retailer aiming to become a people and planet positive business. In 2021, the total IKEA climate footprint decreased by almost 1.6 million tonnes of CO2 equivalents, in absolute terms compared to baseline FY16, a reduction of 5.8%, while IKEA sales surpassed previous highs. This was the 3d consecutive year of climate footprint reductions despite increasing sales, meaning IKEA is on track to meet its 2030 climate positive goals.
For several years, ending in 2017, Pia served as co-chair of REAP, Retailers Environmental Action Programme, together with the EU Commission. Prior to IKEA, Pia worked as Vice President Corporate Social Responsibility at the Rezidor Hotel Group, operator of hotel brands Radisson Blu and Park Inn (300+ hotels in 50+ countries). During this period, Pia chaired the tourism branch of Prince of Wales Business Leader’s Forum, a membership organization for all major international hotel brands.
Pia holds both a Technical Licentiate degree and a M.Sc. in Environmental Management, from the University of Lund, Sweden, and a M.Sc. in International Business Administration and Economics from Uppsala University, Sweden. More recently a degree from the International Directors Programme at INSEAD. She has lived in France and Belgium, but today lives in southern Sweden, with Canadian husband and two teenage daughters.
Pia has worked with, lectured and studied CSR/sustainability related topics since 1996, across academia, consultancy and business.