Alan Chen

Health Intern Team: Social innovation and investment

Alan joined the Young Foundation in February 2017 to support various project programmes and proposals through the organization’s emerging health portfolio. He is interested in exploring the theoretical nature of YF’s place-based social innovation work as well as its practical implications.

Alan has applied experience with change-making leadership and an academic background in social sustainability and the urban design of public spaces. He began his career in social intrapreneurship by directing the McGill Spaces Project, a multi-stakeholder placemaking organization that sought to connect people and transform underused campus spaces into hubs that better served a long-term community vision. As a facilitator alum, he also helped to establish the ECOLE Project – a sustainability & social justice living collective, community hub and nascent research institute for students and community members at McGill University. Alan also served as a member of McGill’s Sustainability Projects Fund Working Group which works to assess sustainability project funding applications for Canada’s largest post-secondary sustainability fund.

Alan has a B.A.Sc. in Sustainability and Urban Systems from McGill University, Montreal, Canada. He was awarded with the Emerald Key in 2015 for his enduring contributions to the sustainability movement at McGill and was recognized as one of Canada’s Top 30 Under 30 Sustainability Champions by the Corporate Knights in 2016.

Outside of school and sustainability, Alan joined the Hua Foundation in Vancouver in 2016 as its Chinatown food security summer coordinator to explore his intercultural heritage. Much of his approach to social innovation now is informed by the conversations he shared around cultural identity and the history of policy-based oppression of Chinese-Canadians in British Columbia, Canada.