Who we are Meet the team Annabel Johnstone Project Officer Background Studying Environmental Science launched me into the world of transformational energy systems, alongside interdisciplinary study across natural and social sciences, from earth and fluid dynamics to natural economics and theory of power to biodiversity conservation. It was here that I first came to work with scenario analysis and futures mapping, where I applied it to my dissertation exploring the risks and opportunities of a decentralised energy system in the UK. A keen interest in system thinking continued to develop throughout my career on the nexus of development and energy access, climate change action, and entrepreneurship, from valuable operations experiences in start-up energy access and energy tech in East Africa, and from international climate change adaptation consulting. Cutting my teeth in the mini-grid start-up space introduced me to the modern public-private-third sector interdependencies and structures, and was certainly an intro course on the system trap of expecting all systems to react in a similar way to a similar stimulus. Making my own way at the start of my career has led me to engage and build with a wide variety of people and organisations – from high level DFIs to grass-roots NGOs, to academic institutions. I contributed strategy for large-scale programme design, designed and pitched grant winning concepts, directed a pre-investment mini-grid company and advised on several others, and culminated the experience in identifying a viable application for a pilot green bond in Rwanda. I had been following Forum’s work for several years, and have been struck by the grounded sophistication of the approach and project scopes, as well as being impressed by the remarkable mix of experience that makes up the great team here. It’s a unique organisation with great values, and I am thrilled to be getting stuck in! Dream project I’d love to see a smart decentralisation of the existing centralised energy systems, to make more efficient use of renewables and bring a democratisation and regional resilience to the sector. This would call for diversity in renewable deployment and skills development, deployment of infrastructure which suits the socio-environmental context of the demand and brings in a potential adaptation of how and why energy is used. I’m also keen to explore a re-framing of how we define and interact with ‘value’. Whilst so much of our current trading is based on a measure of financial output, it is clear to me that there are aspects of latent value which we are trading on which is being missed out of our current assessments – a healthy environment being a model example. The ability to reframe value, and hence wealth, could be a key to empowering millions to take part in transformative change. What floats my boat outside work Much! I enjoy a deep connection and wonderment with nature, and this wonderment leads to other wonders about space and time and how we exist within it. On a less existential day, music is a big part of my life – I love to sing and go listen to a range of genres live. I am a keen swimmer, and I also like to get creative making clothes and painting and such. Coming back to London, I am making the most of the city; it’s great to take it all in, meet new people and explore.