I am the founder and director of the company Wigwam Consulting and Engineering, based in Nantes, France, since 2007. I pilot a 12-person team with diverse backgrounds around projects involving urban consulting, multi-actor and transversal cooperation, collective and creative intelligence, environmental strategy and social innovation, etc. both for private and public clients. I was born in Canada but moved to France 25 years ago. My background helped me to develop a unique and visionary approach to cities which is in huge demand today. I am an urbanist and architect graduated in the Laval University, Qubec and the University of Nantes. I love to continue learning through various trainings from creative problem solving methods to shared governance processes, to behavior change.
Which additional experience/skills can people of Placemaking Europe reach out personally to you for?
For more than 9 years I have been the vice president of a Nantes-based cluster of 400 companies specialized in the built environment, called Novabuild. I am also the president and founder of a 10 year old network gathering women with jobs related to the environment and the city. The purpose of which is to help women build confidence in order to play a greater role in future challenges. In this context, but not only, I gave many conferences in France and Canada, which earned me regional recognition for my ability to clarify complexity and draw links between technical, societal, political, architectural and environmental realms.
Which experience/skills can people of Placemaking Europe reach out to your organisation for?
Wigwam is recognized for its vision and its understanding of human challenges. We are at the forefront of climate and societal change issues, and this with a very down-to-earth and enthusiast approach. At Wigwam we help very diverse groups of people and professionals work together using integrated design methods inspired partly from Canadian processes. In these challenging and troubled times, a clear direction is more than needed - we help bridge the gap and bring about the change which is required to have a resilient city.
Describe one of the projects you are most proud of
We worked for a rural village where the elementary school had to be extended and redesigned. We brought together all stakeholders involved : beyond the city and designers we also invited children, parents, teachers, canteen and school staff and even the truck driver who delivers food into the school. Decision-takers also were around the table to quickly drive things forward. The day when the school was inaugurated the mayor stated that it was the very first time he had experienced real participative democracy - and today the village is often using integrated processes. For the first time we realized that the most important was not to 'design' together but rather to 'plan' together, as it allows to ask the right questions from the beginning. That led me to focus more on clarifying problems, before solving them.