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.

Rotterdam

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, he had the ambition to find more effective solutions for pressing societal challenges. He works from the belief that in order to create the positive change we need, we should consider environmental, societal, economical and technical aspects at the same time. To do this, he researched new approaches to generate change, including systems understanding, new forms of design and leadership through multi-disciplinary cooperation. Using this, he  works to implement resilient, fundamental, and long term measures to improve our society, businesses, cities, and industry. Since then Tom has worked on over 500 projects worldwide to implement this knowledge. He 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  Trouw, and ranked  number 21 on the Dutch Sustainable Real Estate awards. 

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  for organizations, cities, and industries. These include solutions for the circular economy, natural capital, smart urban redevelopment, bio-based economy, and resilience research and development.

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, including their energy systems, ecosystems, resource metabolisms, economy and the heakth and happiness of their people. He spearheads developments ranging from software for supply chain optimization, to sustainable agriculture systems such as Polydome. In addition, Tom is the founder of several  sustainable communities of practice such as the Utrecht Community (UCo, 2016) and the Rotterdam Collective (RoCo, 2010),  both collectives for socially engaged entrepreneurs. He advises national and regional governments as well as multi national corporations on sustainability strategy.

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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Elke Miedema

Architect & Architectural Researcher

Elke Miedema is an ambitious architect and architectural researcher with a passion for the social aspects of architecture. She spent the last 7 years researching how our built environment relates to society’s well-being. 

At Except she continues bridging research, design and practice in actual relevant problems. Finding solutions for the increase of social interaction in health care and public domain.

As a researcher she investigates different perspectives within context. As an architect she takes a stand and translates this in design solutions. Elke challenges herself to find ways to make architecture facilitate social interaction, reduce stress and pain, and increase value for people, for example in the healing process of patients. From this she expands from the field of architecture into the field of environmental psychology, evidence based design and healing environments. 

Elke has a Bachelor in Construction and Building Engineering from the Avans Hogeschool in Tilburg (minor at the Academie van Bouwkunst in Rotterdam) and a Master Degree in Architecture from the TU Delft. She loves to brainstorm on complex issues and to get to the bottom of the case. With this technical bachelor and analytical and creative master, she is able to bridge the knowledge of research and practice into design solutions. Fascinated by forensic psychiatric care, she has also performed reasearch how to build for aggressive, unpredictable psychiatric patients. 

On her days off Elke loves inviting friends over for dinner, surf when it’s sunny or snowboard when it’s cold.  

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Jacob Verhaart

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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Laurina Phillip Muglia

Social Entrepreneur

Laurina believes that talent, knowledge and drive have the power to transform anything. She is excited by the new economy; one that is not defined by geography or nationality, but by unconventional businesses, creativity, technology, exceptional productivity, and social and environmental values. This is what she focuses on to develop at Except.

She believes that this kind of thinking, when applied in the developing world, is one of the keys to both local and global sustainability. New ideas and technologies have the capability to leap-frog old systems and ways of thinking within these societies and present significant step-change opportunities.

Laurina is interested in the practical application of sustainability in any situation, paring early adopters to suitable systems and methods in both developed and developing countries. She is particularly interested in tapping and leveraging the intellect and ambitions within the developing economies that are quickly coming online literally and virtually. She feels that developing new ways to include them into the conversations and implementations of sustainable methods will contribute significantly to addressing the world’s grand challenges and drive developing economies.

Laurina began her working life at a massive Caribbean petroleum refinery saturated with benzene and bureaucracy. Her way out was an MBA into London’s Financial district. Her insistence that HR should be strategic rather than administrative led to new ways of thinking about what created an organization’s best strategic advantage. The culmination of this part of her career was building and developing a young, awarding winning team in a previously failing company that created profits ten times higher than best-in-class in less than two years.

Since then she has developed two businesses: AccomplishedMinds where she interviews entrepreneurs and social entrepreneurs from around the world, connecting the accomplished and fostering the ambitious. She also created Sound Body Science helping, trainers, physicians and Ministries of Health in the Caribbean deal with the crisis point they've reached with obesity related diseases.

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Chris Muglia

Management Associate

Chris has wide ranging interests, ultimately focusing on business, technology and the challenge of sustainability. As a world-savvy business developer, he believes that profit is neutral and a powerful motivator of individual and societal behaviors. He believes that intelligence, science and technology are our most powerful tools, and that they are the key to individual and collective achievement, success and a sustainable and abundant future.

Chris' first job was working as a deckhand on a salvage ship. This led to a degree and a move to Wall Street. The move to Wall Street proved dissonant, so he left and co-founded a business in Mexico. After selling, if you could have found him, he spent the next ten years pared down to a backpack and The Meditations stuffed into a back pocket, working as an officer or captain on research vessels, hospital ships, offshore supply boats, tugs, and square riggers on many of the world’s oceans.

Coming ashore, he merged his knowledge of the maritime industry with Web 1.0, co-founding a project that connected the international shipping industry with the emerging internet businesses. This led to an intense and successful stint as Director of New Ventures for a large civil construction company. He left to co-found Portland Capital, a boutique firm taking on a range of advisory services and investments in the US, Hong Kong, Singapore, Indonesia, and Europe.

From there, he went to the Caribbean, attracted by the opportunity to lead a turn around of a large, region-wide marine construction group and a company villa on the beach in Barbados. There, with the acquisition of new young talent, a focus on integrity, execution, the introduction of Lean thinking, and a lot of hard work, the results were rewarding.

 

 

 

 

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Antonia Sore

Architect

Antonia is an architect with many different passions. Her dream is to create interactive architecture that focuses on people and the natural environment, making them involved actors instead of just passive users. Her main goal is to design towards sustainability and not only energy-efficiency. With that in mind she challenges herself to always look from different perspectives in order to design solutions that embody economical, ecological and social sustainability.

Born and raised in 1700 year old Split on a 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 associate 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

Sustainable Buildings Engineer

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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New Haven

Basel