Except Integrated Sustainability

People

Except is a collaborative enterprise, consisting of talented and motivated sustainability experts in over 20 disciplines.

We’re immensely proud of our unique team, realizing that without our diversity, experience and dedication, we could never work on such a variety of pioneering projects.

Because of our global reach we have representation in various countries, including the United States, the Netherlands and Mexico. Most of our experts speak multiple languages and are available on an individual basis.

Utrecht

Tom Bosschaert

Director

Tom is the founder and director of Except, and the visionary force behind its development. Starting Except at the age of 19 in 1999, his vision was to find systemic solutions for our societal challenges by combining science, business, design and communication. His vision shows that we can flourish globally when we integrate environmental, societal, economical and technical aspects at the same time. In the past decades Tom developed  over 500 projects pioneering projects for cities, buildings, business, policy, and industry. 

Tom has been increasingly recognized as a leader in sustainability thinking, the circular economy and systemic innovation. In 2014 he was elected number 38 of most influential sustainability  professionals in the Netherlands by  the national newspaper Trouw, and ranked  number 21 on the Dutch Sustainable Real Estate awards.  In 2017 his initiative, the   UCo center for sustainable entrepreneurship  in Utrecht    opened, bringing together over 150 sustainability pioneers in the first energy neutral, circular and  healthy listed heritage building in Europe.

Tom develops the Symbiosis in Development (SiD) methodology that lies at the core of Except’s operations. SiD combines systems thinking, complexity analysis, iterative design thinking and co-creation in multi-disciplinary teams. With SiD Tom leads transdisciplinary teams  to develop pioneering solutions that breach the frontier of what's possible. These include solutions for the circular economy, natural capital, smart urban redevelopment, bio-based economy, and resilience research and development.

Project highlights
As director and designer, he's driven Except's bio-based architectural and urban designs, such as the Merredin Algae plant, Shanghai vertical agriculture tower systems and the urban redevelopment of large and small cities around the world. This includes  their energy systems, ecosystem services, resource metabolisms, business models and the health and happiness of their people. In 2016 he launched the concept of Catalytic buildings. He spearheads developments ranging from software for supply chain optimization to sustainable agriculture systems such as Polydome.

Studies
After his Master in Industrial Design Engineering from Delft, Tom studied Architecture in Australia at the University of Western Australia, and obtained his Masters in Architecture & Urban Planning from Yale University. Tom has worked and lectured in Australia, Canada, China, the Netherlands, Belgium, Italy,  and the United States. He teaches as a guest-lecturer in various universities and publishes articles regularly.

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Jacob Verhaart

Head of Science; Industrial Ecologist

Jacob is Except's resident genius scientist. As an industrial ecologist, Jacob knows everything about energy and material flows, urban metabolism, impact and life cycle assessment, and the circular economy. As an engineer, Jacob has particular love for building systems and sustainable building practices.  Jacob always always wants to know everything there is to know about a subject. When he was little, his favorite word was “why?”.

That condition never got better. He is fascinated by nature, architecture and technology. He would like to get to know as much as there is to know about sustainability and translate that into concrete solutions for improving the world.

Jacob has a humanist’s understanding of social policy coupled with an engineers’ appreciation of practicality. In the last four years he helped to increase the understanding of the interaction of office workers with their thermal environment, in his role as a researcher at the TU Eindhoven in the department of Building Physics and Services. Comfort through user involvement is essential to make buildings better and more sustainable. Technology is there to help people in making doing the right thing easier.

This practical side is also visible when Jacob designs and builds furniture. The best furniture is esthetically pleasing, is useful and makes life easier. Additional advantage is that woodworking and building is a relaxing activity, and therefore it’s no surprise that a large portion of Jacobs house is filled with his own creations.

Jacob has a PhD in building physics from Eindhoven University, a Master’s degree in Industrial Ecology from Delft and Leiden Universities, and a Bachelor’s in Aerospace Engineering.

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Antonia Sore

Architect

Antonia is an architect with many different passions and several years of experience in sustainable architecture and urban planning. She enjoys creating interactive architecture that focuses on people and the natural environment, making them involved actors instead of just passive users. Pursuing integrated sustainable designs, she challenges herself to always look from different perspectives in order to find solutions that embody economical, ecological and social sustainability.

Born and raised in 1700 year old Split on the Dalmatian coast, she has developed a sensitivity towards cultural and natural heritage since childhood. At the age of 19 Antonia moved to Italy where she graduated in Bachelor and Master degree in Architecture at the University of Florence. During her studies she has developed an interest in Urban Sociology and ever since is passionate in research about the interaction between the built environment and people’s behaviour.

Antonia joined Except initially as an intern during her 2nd level Post-Graduate Course “Sustainable Design of the built environment” and was part of the 1st Except Academy, a learning platform for interns. As an member she continues to support the academy team, eager to further strengthen her skills and help others do the same.

As an architect she believes that design is not only about the form and aesthetics but rather about the added value it generates for the environment and the society. She wants to contribute to re-building cities where people are engaged and active part of the change. In everything she does she always asks herself: why are we doing what we do and how are we contributing to the environment we live in.

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Luca Gennari

Environmental Engineering Consultant

Luca is an expert in  Environmental Building Engineering, who, after years of study and research brings his expertise and knowledge to Except.

 As a child it was Lego that inspired Luca to build. After some years of studying, research and work, it was nature that became his biggest source of inspiration. Luca strives to  achieve energy optimization and reduction of environmental impact, while maximizing human living comfort. With that ambition in mind, he directed his education and the first years of his professional career towards green buildings. After a Bachelor in Environmental Engineering in Italy, he worked for a consultancy company that supplied building energy modeling software. Passionate about the achievements of the Danish government, he decided to leave his country to study a Master in Building Engineering at the Technical University of Denmark, where he undertook the Energy Saving study line. This allowed him to work for the Solar Decathlon 2014 and for the International Center for Indoor Environment and Energy.

 After one year of working as a researcher in Denmark, Luca felt the need to move forwards, he wanted to work on more tangible projects, together with others, on making the construction system more sustainable. The combination of smart building components and efficient services offers a promising way forwards. At Except, he has the possibility to understand the connections between  those factors, as well as the opportunity to  analyze buildings as a living organism, and the urban fabric as its ecosystem.  He is now part of the 2nd Except Academy and works as a freelance consultant.

Born and raised in Italy, he has developed a sensitivity towards cultural and natural heritage which he combines with engineering knowledge. He believes that innovation is just the state of the art of tradition; one does not preclude the other, they are rather complementary. 

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Brian Baldassarre

Designer and Researcher

Brian is a designer and researcher. His area of expertise within Except is to analyze and synthesize information connecting business, technology and humans in order to develop new sustainable products, services, experiences and value propositions. His background combines technical design skills with creative thinking and a business mindset. He holds a BSc in Product Design at Politecnico di Milano University and an MSc in Design Strategy at Delft University of Technology with a specialization in Technology for Sustainable Development.

When he was three years old, Brian went to the mountains for the first time and discovered nature. He decided to become a paleontologist, explore the world and look for fossil dinosaurs trapped inside rocks. At the age of sixteen, he left his home in Rome, living, studying and working across eight different countries including Italy, The United States, Spain, Honduras, The Netherlands, India, Colombia and South Africa. He likes doodling with a black pen, writing down his thoughts, reading about the lives of real people who did something noteworthy, playing the acoustic guitar, rock climbing and, above all, exploring, seeing faraway places and talking to diverse people in order to get to know the world.

Brian believes that the designer should be an active agent of change in the transition towards sustainable development. He has worked on various international development projects for small social businesses and large NGOs in Latin America and in Asia. He also worked as a strategic consultant within sustainable service and business innovation projects for company clients. As a researcher at the Product Innovation Management Department of Delft University of Technology he has investigated which factors underlie successful implementation of design projects in emerging markets. He explored how sustainability objectives can be used as a catalyst for business model innovation, combining principles from Design Thinking and Sustainable Entrepreneurship.

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Monica Visniuc

Industrial Ecologist

As an Industrial Ecologist, Monica applies a systematic approach to deliver solutions for sustainability problems. This implies integrating engineering, environmental and social science perspectives for identifying, designing and evaluating solutions to sustainable development.   

As an engineer, she is passionate about researching and applying the latest practices and technologies about sustainable agriculture, while understanding the ecosystem services and the relationship between organisms and their environment.

 While pursuing one of her passion in life – traveling, she observed first hand the need for sustainable development and the inequalities that the world is facing, especially in developing countries. Therefore she continued her environmental education, and studied Industrial Ecology (IE), the scientific field of sustainability, and dedicated her career to building more sustainable societies.

 Using the IE approach, the  behaviour  of complex integrated human/natural systems is mapped and understood, and the sustainability issues are examined from multiple perspectives: societal, environmental, economic and technological.

 In Except Monica discovered a dynamic team sharing her passion and dedication for sustainability, that uses an innovative approach in accelerating the frontier to sustainability.   At Except, she is creating tools aimed at improving the operation of multinational corporations, performs energy and material flow analyses, and creates strategies for complex challenges.

 She applies the same passion for sustainability in her personal life, where during her volunteer work with WWF she brings awareness for local communities on how to live a more sustainable life. She also works closely with educational institutions in providing knowledge through events and presentations for the next generations of sustainable minds.

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New Haven

Basel