After setting a record for sailing around the world, Dame Ellen MacArthur has turned her attention toward creating a more "circular" economy — where resources and power recirculate and regenerate.

Why you should listen

It's a tradition among British citizens: If you circumnavigate the globe by sail, you'll earn royal honors. Ellen MacArthur was made a dame in 2005 after the fastest solo sail around the world. But when you sail alone around the world, things come into focus. Dame Ellen, at the top of her sailing career, had become acutely aware of the finite nature of the resources our linear economy relies on.

In 2010, she launched the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, which works with education and business to accelerate the transition to a regenerative circular economy. She also runs the Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust, using sailing to build confidence for kids following cancer treatment.

What others say

“Inspired by living alone on her yacht for more than two months, she found herself nagged by the question: how can our world continue to function with the economic model we've been living with for two centuries?” — Peter Day, BBC News Business

Dame Ellen MacArthur’s TED talk

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