SEED Consulting Services

Permaculture design offers a framework for resilient and regenerative design of urban and rural contexts. A whole systems approach coupled with design thinking of observation, analysis, design and using feedback loops for constant iteration is not only a way to design more regenerative and resilient systems, but also to teach a more holistic and adaptive way of thinking.

We offer the following:

  • Participatory design consultations- co-creating a regenerative design for your project, home, neighbourhood or farm. In order for the design to be sustainable we teach key stakeholders the design methodology and how to maintain. 
  • Programme design- Using permaculture design methodologies as well as Theory U and other participatory and interactive methodologies we work with you to design programmes addressing resilience that are creative and relevant. We use the Theory U framework as a way to give new insights and perspectives. 
  • Design of curriculums focused on resilience- we have 25 years combined experience of curriculum design based on permaculture for different contexts: from South African school children and matric youth to small-holder farmers across Africa. Our curriculums are co-created using a participatory process, ensuring a sense of ownership and relevance. 
  • Tool design- Linked to programme and curriculum design we also support projects with tool design to support their resilience projects. 

Our Approach
We use permaculture design thinking and a range of methodologies focused on participation and co-creation to guide how we work with clients. A whole systems approach and the Theory U framework frames our thinking, design thinking helps us work adaptively and appropriately to context and creative and participatory methodologies ensure that clients are deeply involved and practically learning throughout the design process, thus also ensuring sustainability.

Theory U is a change management tool developed by Otto Scharmer at the Presencing Institute at MIT. In the last few years it has become a widely used tool in facilitation of processes. Rather than going from observation to action planning, Theory U emphasizes deep reflection which helps to connect with a deeper knowing, thus allowing for new insights and perspectives to come to light. By tapping into our inner selves we allow for more transformational learning to take place.



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Elin L. Duby

Elin has worked with permaculture in development and social processes with a focus on transformational learning for change for the last 15 years. She built up and led the Permaculture Research Institute of Kenya. During this time she co-designed several programmes focused on resilience together with partner organizations. She also designed curriculums for permaculture courses, teacher trainings and consultancies. During her 6 years at PRI-Kenya, 1000 East Africans and international students obtained permaculture design certificates and undertook specialised short courses in permaculture.

For the last 3 years Elin has been working as a freelance consultant. She has worked with the USAID TOPS and SCALE programme to develop the Resilience Design curriculum and associated monitoring tool together with a group of internationally renowned permaculture experts such as Warren Brush and Brad Lancaster. She has also co-facilitated Resilience Design trainings across Africa and in Nepal. Elin is particularly passionate about the kind of learning that brings true transformation in thinking and behaviour. She has authored a discussion paper for USAID on Adaptive Thinking and has facilitated various social process workshops using creative and participatory methodologies for transformational change.