LAUREN HERMANUS

STRATEGIC DIRECTOR

ROLES:

  • Strategy

  • Partnerships

  • Research

  • Theory Development

I am most thrilled by the power of imagination to change the way we solve problems. Our ability to think up new futures for our cities and societies, presents us with blueprints that allows us to act differently today. This is why I am a part of the Massive Small Inception team, connecting with a global network of urbanists to imagine these new futures together.

I am a sustainable development specialist, whose role is to envision, strategise and implement interventions for an inclusive and sustainable society. I continue this work with Massive Small, drawing on my knowledge and experience of complexity thinking and development policy and practice.

From 2007-2011, I was privileged to work under the mentorship of leading complexity thinker, Paul Cilliers. Complexity thinking affords me a sensitivity to connection, context and change in policy, strategy and programme design. It leads me to focus on the stuff in between silos and disciplines, on the dynamic relationships between people, organisations, institutions and systems.

Having worked in the public and private sectors, my projects investigated and modelled new resource-efficient solutions to societal challenges. In my most recent role as the Green Economy Coordinator for Western Cape Government, I built partnerships with the OECD, WWF and the International Institute for Sustainable Development. My experience spans green economy policy and strategy, sustainable expansion of local industry (aquaculture), resource planning, renewable energy, sustainable human settlements and sustainable procurement. I have also worked with listed companies across finance, retail, ICT and mining sectors, to understand and address social, environmental and climate change risk and opportunity.

My interest in small interventions with massive impact has led me to focus my most recent research (Mphil) on energy innovation. Specifically, this work speaks to how renewable energy technologies are creating space for new actors, roles and opportunity within energy systems. And further, how the consequent decentralisation of power is supporting local and economic opportunity.

BA Hons. (Politics, Philosophy, Economics), MA (Complexity and Post-structural Philosophy), MPhil (Development Policy and Practice – currently enrolled)

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