Ben Emmens



My name is Ben Emmens; I work with people – individuals and organisations – to bring about positive social change.

I’ve been doing this since I was a teenager! 

It began with outdoor pursuits and youth work, and grew through teaching experience at secondary, further and higher education levels, and further still through voluntary work in communities. I’ve spent the last 25 years in various management and leadership roles, where my focus has been on designing, developing and delivering services, and “capacity development” for aid agencies and international development organisations all over the world. 

I also write; my last book – ‘Conscious Collaboration‘ – was published by Palgrave Macmillan in September 2016.

Right now I get to combine my experience as an entrepreneur, leader and innovator through a social business called the Conscious Project.


These days, most of my work is through the Conscious Project and begins as a thinking partnership with an individual, a group of individuals, or a team. From that connection, and the conversations and reflections we share together, clarity and a way forward often emerges, and then my work may evolve into a specific assignment. Sometimes I just get a phone call or an email asking whether I can help, and that’s ok too!

I work in the UK and internationally, with voluntary and not-for-profit organisations, with government, with Universities and Business Schools, with small businesses and with multi-national corporations. Most of my current work is with national and international non-government organisations (NGOs and INGOs). That means delivering results with limited resources and usually in the context of change and ambiguity. Often I find myself working in complex, chaotic and insecure contexts, dealing with layers of social and cultural complexity. 

Over the last 25 years I have worked in almost 60 countries across the Americas, Europe, Asia, Africa and Oceania. I’ve worked in retail, hospitality, agriculture, sports management and marketing, academia, architecture and design, international development, and in various functions including marketing and business development, project management, operations management (human resources management, organisation development, IT, facilities management, quality management) and programme management. 

It’s hard to fit the type of work I do into a neat category, but as a guide here are a few of the areas I specialise in:

  • >  facilitating thinking;
  • >  facilitating strategic planning or review processes;
  • >  facilitating change or a design / innovation challenge;
  • >  developing leadership skills and behaviours;
  • >  coaching and mentoring;
  • >  the design and delivery of adult and/or postgraduate learning (MA / MSc / MBA)
  • >  applying learning;
  • >  consulting on organisational strategy and implementation, with a focus on innovation, sustainability and social responsibility;
  • >  consulting on a wide range of human capital, people management and organisational development issues.

Please get in touch if you’d like to talk about how we might work together, or how I can help you. If you’d like to find out more about the social business I jointly lead then come over and visit the ‘conscious project‘. If you’d like to find out more about my book – Conscious Collaboration – then visit

I am currently based in the UK; I can work almost anywhere in the world!


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