Michael Toffel
Senator John Heinz Professor of Environmental Management, Harvard Business School

Professor Toffel is the Senator John Heinz Professor of Environmental Management. His research examines how companies are addressing climate change (especially decarbonization) and other environmental and working condition issues in their operations and supply chains. He co-founded and hosts the HBS Climate Rising podcast, which covers a range of business and climate change topics, and co-created the HBS Working Conditions in Supply Chains microsite to summarize evidence-based academic research on that topic.

He serves as the Faculty Chair of the HBS Business and Environment Initiative, is a co-Principle Investigator of the Climate and Sustainability Impact Lab of the Digitial, Data, and Design (D3) Institute at Harvard, co-chairs Harvard's Presidential Committee on Sustainability, leads the Climate Change Deep Dive for the Advanced Leadership Initiative (ALI) program, serves on the Harvard Committee on Climate Education, and teaches the HBS Technology & Operations Management core MBA course. 

His work ranges from academic articles based on econometric analyses of large datasets to case studies of individual companies. His research on occupational health and safety has been profiled by the head of U.S. OSHA and featured in the national press including US News & World Report and Scientific American. His research has been published in many top scholarly journals including Science, Management Science, Strategic Management Journal, Administrative Science Quarterly, and Organization Science, in practitioners journals including Sloan Management Review and California Management Review, and in mainstream outlets including The Atlantic Monthly and Newsweek/DailyBeast. Prof. Toffel is co-editing the Management Science Special Issue on Business and Climate Change, and recently co-edited the Manufacturing & Service Operations Management (MSOM) Special Issue on Responsible Research in Operations Managements

He serves as an Associate Editor at MSOM, and is on the editorial boards of Strategic Management Journal and Organization Science. He is on the Working Board of the Responsible Research for Business and Management (RRBM) network and a co-founder and steering committee member of the Alliance for Research on Corporate Sustainability (ARCS), which organize leading annual academic conferences to foster high-quality research on practically relevant (RRBM) and corporate sustainability topics (ARCS). 

His co-authors include Yanhua Zhou BirdAaron (Ronnie) ChatterjiMagali DelmasAnil DoshiGlen Dowell, Kira Fabrizio, Caroline Flammer, Andrea Hugill, Maria Ibanez, Chonnikarn (Fern) Jira, Matthew JohnsonShirley LuAndrew KingDavid LevineJulian MarshallChris Marquis, Melissa Ouellet, Ashley PalmarozzoLamar PierceErin ReidGeorge SerafeimTim SimcoeSara SingerJodi ShortKala Viswanathan, and David Vogel.

He recommends the HBS Business & Environment InitiativeEnvironmental LeaderGristEthical Corporation, and SustainableBusiness.com to keep up on corporate environmental news, and Popular Info to track corporate lobbying

Toffel has organized several conferences, including on climate change risks and opportunities at HBS (2020), effective government inspection and compliance in Washington DC (2015), corporate sustainability at HBS (2010), the role of information disclosure in corporate transparency and accountability at the National Press Club in Washington DC (2009), business and human rights in operations and supply chains at HBS (2008), and industry self-regulation at HBS (2007).

Professor Toffel received a Ph.D. from the Haas School of Business' Business and Public Policy department at the University of California at Berkeley, an MBA from the Yale School of Management, a Master’s in Environmental Management (Industrial Environmental Management) from the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies, and a BA in Government from Lehigh University. He has worked as the Director of Environment, Health and Safety at the Jebsen & Jessen (South East Asia) Group of Companies, based in Singapore. He has also worked as an environmental management consultant for Arthur Andersen, Arthur D. Little, and Xerox Corporation. He started his career as an operations management analyst at J.P. Morgan.

Professor Toffel is a Town Meeting Member for the Town of Brookline.