Hello, I'm Dan
I work with head, heart and hands with deep experience from 20 years working at the leading edges of creative communications, design, insight and human behaviour, sustainability, eco-innovation, social innovation, cause led campaigning, creative activism, co-design, participation and collaboration culture, values led leadership, purposeful brand and business innovation.
I work with all kinds of organisations (for profit, not for profit, start-ups, ngo’s, community orgs) in a range of ways:
As a creative strategist helping develop products, brands, communications and campaigns fit for purpose in a planetary context: purposeful, regenerative, considered, generous, circular, beautiful, epic.
As a co-designer for radical new collaborations: designing, hosting and holding collaboration spaces/experiments.
As a creative catalyst to inspire brand activism and creating a more beautiful world: via talks, walks and inspiration workshops.
As a writer and speaker.
I can work as part of an existing team, as an external collaborator, adviser, provocateur, catalyst, sherpa for more conscious innovation and creativity. Always open for a chat, cuppa or walk to see how I might be able to help. Case studies and testimonials available.
Flavours I bring
I'm really interested in the practice of care. Learning to look after yourself as an individual, your own health and wellbeing, caring for others around you - civic and community participation, caring for the health of the planet - the more than human world around us - the ultimate operating system for all life.
I believe there is enormous regenerative and creative potential in care, looking out for each other and the world around us, building that into how we go about our work/life.
Care, love, empathy, creativity, generosity, connecting to the more than human world - in my opinion these are the most pressing and positively disruptive innovation practices today.
Good for people, good for planet and without doubt essential to the future for any business that wants to remain relevant.
I’m always asking, ‘how can we make a more beautiful world by experimenting and co-creating with the opportunities we have everyday, as people, organisations, business, brands and communities’.
Out in the world
I speak regularly about the potential of creativity and generosity for social and environmental change including the Do Lectures, Innocent Inspires, Sustainable Brands, Good Life Experience and Murmurations.
My work and thinking has been referenced in the books Unboss/Kolind&Botter, A Smart Guide to Utopia/LeCool, Future Fit/Giles Hutchins and Co-Opportunity/John Grant. I’m a guest lecturer on the Co-Creating the Emerging Future course at Schumacher College, Devon.
A former club DJ, today I'm a bread baking, trailrunning, surf loving, nature freaking, type 1 diabetic dad who believes in the power of the remix, the extraordinary possibilities and opportunities for those willing to imagine what could be and lean into what is unfolding on our watch.
Let’s make a more beautiful world.
THE PROFESSIONAL JOURNEY SECTION
Co-Pilot Wild Labs
Wild Labs is a collaboration unit with an ethical design ethos, based on the values of human dignity and ecological sustainability. Good to people, good to planet. Recent projects include accelerating ocean literacy in UK culture and developing prototypes exploring technology driven solutions to ocean conservation issues with Salesforce. I currently lead the creative strategy, design and collaboration approach to project challenges.
Co-founder Swarm Partnership
March 2013 - September 2017
Co-founded Swarm, a networked consultancy studio, combining creative collaboration, collective intelligence and experiential learning to accelerate the prototyping and hatching of engagement platforms, communication campaigns, product and service innovations and new ventures with a focus on positive social and environmental impacts and systemic issues. The approach catalyses diverse cross sector collaborations together with unusual suspects including artists, activists, technologists, designers, brands, NGO’s, grass roots innovators, social entrepreneurs, funders and foundations. Highlights include campaign accelerators in UK and US to design the global comms launch of the UN’s Global Goals, media product innovation program Open Studios to challenge gender norms for girls in India, Nigeria and Indonesia with Girl Effect, launching engagement platform Nature Intelligence Unit with UK conservation sector to accelerate UK public natural intelligence. Co-designing social mission with high street retailer Boots to focus on next generation health and wellbeing. The co-founders continue to develop, offer and host the core Swarm accelerator product a dynamic, disruptive , highly generative approach for cross sector collaborations tackling complex social and environmental issues, focussed on system innovation and systemic change.
Creative Strategic lead - The Wild Network
March 2013 - ongoing
Creative force working with film-makers Greenlions behind the launch of award winning feature length documentary film Project Wild Thing, exploring British kids disconnection from nature, credited co-producer, led the brand creation, engagement strategy and launch, key instigator of the forming and launch of the Wild Network. Hatched the original concept of Wild Time and the Wild Time App which went on to be licensed to Unilever brand Persil. Led the creation of Wild Time Learning a networked learning concept helping teachers take curriculum learning outdoors. Currently in a co-design experiment with the community of 30,000 exploring how to navigate a hi-tech hi-nature life.
Strategy Director//Head of Naked Planet
AUGUST 2006-JUNE 2010
Pioneering agency Naked Communications, part of the 'brilliant misfits', my role was developing global communications strategy and tactics for clients including Nokia, Nike, Sony and Nokia NSeries. Core focus on partnership innovation, sustainability and building communities through digital and social strategies. Led the development of significant strand of award winning global work, Nokia, Power of We: covering internal engagement, digital, social and retail comms, partnerships and service design. Launched new agency practice, Naked Planet focussed on communications and innovation for good business.
Associate Director, 2cv
December 2002 - June 2006
Providing cultural, human and strategic insight for design, product and marketing teams on global NPD and communication projects for brands including Nike, Virgin Group, BBC, Sony Playstation and Nokia.
Founder - Squarepeg
Boutique music consultancy. Creative activations and placement of cutting edge electronic music within commercial communications. Sold business to my partner who continues to make it flourish 15 years later.
Co-founder - Good for Nothing
December 2011 - Present
Started as a side project experiment to bring together creative talent networks with social change agents, social entrepreneurs and community activists, Good for Nothing catalyses creative generosity in social innovation and civic participation. The project went on to be grant funded through NESTA Innovation in Giving and is now a growing generosity network, activated in 30 city chapters in 8 countries, with a current community of about 5000 participants. Voted by Observer Newspaper as one of 50 New Radicals changing the face of Britain 2014. I continue to guide its development.
EDUCATION & LEARNING
SCHUMACHER COLLEGE, DEVON, UK
Call of the Wild, One year program in environmental education & leadership, deep nature connection, wilderness guiding.
ASHRIDGE EXEC EDUCATION, HULT BUSINESS SCHOOL
MSc Sustainability & Responsibility: Two year part time, dynamic action learning Masters program, encompassing systems thinking, Gaia Theory, living systems, power dynamics, organisational change, sustainable innovation with action inquiry based learning. Thesis focussed on open, distributed networks for change.
BA (HONS) International Marketing Management
"All life is an experiment, the more experiments you make the better."