You are here

GARNIER

Sebastien

GARNIER

Ad-Hoc Expert

Generic Skills

B.1. Understanding of integrated and sustainable urban development: 
The provision of sufficient adequate and affordable housing for different target groups is a core element of sustainable urban development in itself. It is also closely linked to several others like health, education, mobility, social integration and resource efficiency. During more than ten years I helped social housing providers to deliver their sustainable urban development goals mainly by strengthening the regulatory environment and financial conditions for social housing and by working closely with authorities and tenant organizations. As Manager European Affairs for the Dutch social housing federation in Brussels, I also monitored the interaction between European regulations and social housing and connected to decision-makers to inform them about possible beneficial or harmful consequences of new policies. This helped to enhance the possibilities for social housing organizations to invest in new affordable and adequate dwellings for different target groups; improve the energy performance of buildings, perform urban (re)development, work on social cohesion; and keep neighbourhoods safe and clean together with their residents. As consultant at AxHA I provide support and advice to different clients: cities, housing providers, associtations, NGO’s, financial institutions, research institutes in the field of affordable and adequate housing by focusing on institutional development, governance, capacity building, research, finance, policy-making.
B1. Assessment: 
1: The candidate demonstrates experience in sustainable urban development. He has more than 10 years of experience in social housing (e.g. regulatory framework, energy performance, social cohesion) and urban development.
B.2. Understanding of exchange and learning processes at transnational level: 
I have a long experience in facilitating the exchange of knowledge and experience between organizations from different countries. First, by working for the Dutch embassy in Argentina and later by organizing and receiving visits for delegations from different trade associations and countries, by setting up thematic working groups among housing providers; by organizing study visits; by coordinating the drafting of practical sectoral guides, including best practices; and by animating and moderating online exchange fora on specific themes related to housing delivery. For instance, I was actively involved in the organization of the first International Social Housing Festival that drew thousands of professionals to the many events spread throughout Amsterdam during nine days; I chaired the group that developed the UNPRI Impact Investment Market Map for Affordable Housing. I am also lecturer for the course on Social Housing Development Projects at the Institute for Housing and Urban Development Studies at the Erasmus University (Rotterdam, NL) which is held every year for international professionals from all continents.
B2. Assessment: 
1: The applicant demonstrates experience in exchange and learning activities at transnational level. He was involved in the organization of International Social Housing Festival, the development of UNPRI Impact Investment Market Map for Affordable Housing (e.g. setting up thematic working groups) and annual lectures on Social Housing Development Projects at the Institute for Housing and Urban Development Studies at the Erasmus University.
B.3. Proficiency in English: 
Academic background - studying economic and law courses in English at the University of Utrecht (NL) and FLACSO (ARG) Continuous use of English in different professional settings for many years, both oral and written. Able to lead discussions, moderate panels, present abstract ideas in English.
B3. Assessment: 
1: The applicant is fluent in English language, apart from few minor grammar mistakes in the application form.

Expertise for the design and delivery of transnational exchange and learning activities:

C.3.1. Ability to communicate complex concepts to non-English speakers: 
My past experiences and current projects require regular presentations to non-native speakers, on average on a weekly basis. This can take many different forms such as panel participant, moderator, speeches, PPT presentations, webinars, short video messages, etc. I feel very comfortable with different communication channels and can avoid using technical jargon to explain abstract concepts or ideas. The fact that I worked with communications professionals and spoke-persons strengthened my ability to provide messages that are clear and to-the-point. Presenting for very different audiences – ranging from experts in housing finance in Africa to a delegation of German MP’s, has taught me to adapt the communication to the needs and background of participants. Finally, working on regulatory issues, brought me the importance of building an effective communication – even on technicalities - around a logical and human narrative with examples from the ground.
C3.1 Assessment: 
1: The applicant demonstrates ability to communicate complex concepts to non-English speakers as a panel participant, moderator, lector as well as PPT, webinars and short video messages presenter.
C.3.2. Ability to draw out, support the verbalization and documentation of knowledge and practice from participants: 
I organized many brainstorm sessions to develop a national federation’s strategic positioning in different regulatory issues. Furthermore, I am trained to use ideation methods to support the enhancement and enrichment process of projects and ideas during a series of meetings between experts. Not only does this require in-depth preparations - logistical and content-wise - but also certain a resolute style of chairmanship that leads to clear decision-making and minutes towards a productive outcome of such iterative co-creation processes.
C3.2 Assessment: 
1: The applicant demonstrated ability to produce outputs to support exchange of experiences and knowledge at transnational level. He referred to brainstorm sessions and use of ideation methods.
C.3.3. Ability to capture learning for participants to take away: 
When writing reports of meetings and conference to capture the most essential (and sometimes hidden) message or learning-point that the audience had to bring home. As a moderator, the capacity to summarize and drive the discussion from different angles is also an ability I learned. For instance during the workshop I organized and led on the value of Impact Finance for Social Housing in 2017. Another example is the short report of a conference’s outcomes I wrote a week ago (Retrofit Europe conference in Eindhoven, NL) for the Triple A Reno project’s newsletter.
C3.3 Assessment: 
1: The applicant provided two relevant examples of documents produced to capture the knowledge and experiences exchanged at transnational level (e.g summary of a workshop on social housing; report of a conference outcomes).
C.3.4. Ability to produce concise reports that incorporate good practices and policy messages: 
Wrote many articles on European regulation, finance, best practices for websites and sector magazines: Aedes, Housing Europe, EU Futurium, and urban policy websites such as Agenda Stad en Ruimte en Wonen (NL). Active on twitter where I share insights from the social and affordable housing sector on a daily basis. (1.300 followers)
C3.4 Assessment: 
0: The applicant did not provide relevant examples of reports incorporating good practices and policy messages. He indicates to be an author of articles.
Assessment: 
The applicant is not validated for C due to C1 and C2. He is only validated for C3 (meeting 2 out of 4 criteria). Overall, the applicant does not meet the criteria for Expertise for the design and delivery of transnational exchange and learning activities. Contributed to strengthen the role of social housing in several EU policies. E.g. in the European Social Pillar, Energy efficiency, State aid, EFSI, ESIF, reports of the European Parliament. Intermediated to help social housing organization access EU funding (ERDF) and open up the sector to loans from the European Investment Bank Founding partner of the first International Social Housing Festival Involved in one of the largest emission of Social Bonds (€ 2.2 Bn) for Affordable Housing by helping the issuer promote the bond among investors and by drafting the social report. Rapporteur of the EU Housing Partnership on State Aid (2015-2017), as such drafted and coordinated the Guidance paper on State support for affordable Housing, one of the deliverables of the Action Plan of the Housing Partnership of the EU Urban Agenda. Special advisor of the President of Housing Europe (2014-2017) Chair of the UNPRI (www.unpri.org) Impact Investment Market Map for Affordable Housing (2018) Manager European Public Affairs in Brussels for Aedes, the Dutch federation of social housing providers (2011-2017) Lectured at the Social Housing Development Projects for the Institute for Urban and Housing Development Studies, Erasmus University, Rotterdam, NL (2018)

Thematic expertise:

Theme / Policy: 
Sustainable Housing
D.1. Deep knowledge on the selected theme and related policy challenges, including up to date practice, research, etc.: 
- Managing Director, AxHA Consultancy, which provides advice to public and private organizations (local authorities, housing federations, financial institutions) to enhance the delivery of social, affordable and accessible housing in Europe. - European Affairs Manager, for Aedes the Dutch federation of social housing: Monitoring EU policies impacting social housing, advising the management and board. Devise positioning and lobbying actions at EU level on energy policies, economic governance, finance, competition law; Connecting strategic EU lobby objectives with national and local housing needs issues; Maintain a network of key decision-makers and stakeholders in the housing sector at European level ; Provide internal and external communication about EU policies and regulations - Policy advisor in the Finance team of the Dutch federation of social housing, representing around 350 not-for-profit organizations that manage 2.4 million dwellings. Responsible for 1) capacity building in the field of finance, governance, risk management, state aid regulation, tendering/commissioning. 2) Lobbying and public affairs to optimize the regulatory conditions for social housing providers (e.g. scope of activities, financial supervision, state aid, tax regulation) - Senior advisor at the Economic Department of the Dutch Embassy in Argentina: worked on the institutional setting to drive micro-finance for housing development.
D1 Assessment: 
1: The applicant demonstrates experience on the topic of Sustainable Housing as a Managing Director, consultant, public officer and advisor on social, affordable and accessible housing.
D.2. Ability to produce thematic inputs to feed in the learning process of in projects in which you have been involved: 
Wrote many position papers and internal papers on housing-related subjects since 2008 to housing providers, local authorities, ministries and European institutions. Prepared many site visits for professional groups and networks to social housing projects where I was also involved in the preparation of the background information sent in preparation to the participants Access to a wide network of housing professionals in Europe Organized many trainings and workshops for housing professionals and policy officers on many different themes: e.g. financing of social housing, EU state aid regulation, urban re-development and housing, institutional development and regulation, impact investment possibilities for social housing, risk management in organizations and projects, etc.
D2 Assessment: 
1: The applicant demonstrates experience the the production of thematic inputs to feed in the learning process. He has developed position papers and internal papers.
D.3. Ability to produce concise reports that incorporate learning from exchange & learning activities, put forward good practice: 
---
D3 Assessment: 
0: The applicant has provided less than two valid examples of reports incorporating good practices and policy messages for an audience of city practitioners and policy-makers.
D.4. Understanding of how to maximize the use of project results for benefits in capitalization, policy design, awarenes: 
At the finalization of projects or event, ensured that learning points would be shared among the rest of the sector - when working at the national federation - through summary reports or articles (with interviews with participants and speakers). In other cases training and exchange activities in workshops were continued by creating thematic communities. Conclusions of learning activities, can also be integrated in policy recommendations and position papers that are then shared and discussed with key stakeholders by a delegation of participants.
D4 Assessment: 
1: The applicant demonstrates understanding of projects outputs produced for capitalization purposes (e.g. through summary reports, articles, interviews, trainings, workshops, creation of thematic communities, policy recommendations).
Summary Thematic expertise: 
More than ten years of experience in the social housing sector at local, national and European level dealing with social, financial, and energy issues and housing policies. Worked on many issues including: macro-economic analysis of housing markets, tendering procedures, risk management, state aid regulation, energy efficiency performance, regulations and governance, fiscal measures, social inequalities and impact investments. Involved in public affairs at national and European level to optimize the (regulatory, financial and economic) conditions for social/public/cooperative housing providers to deliver sufficient housing that is affordable and adequate in socially, economically and environmentally sustainable communities. Worked with housing providers, cities, ministries, NGO's, think tanks, academics to enhance the efficient supply of social housing through workshops, trainings, practical guides, thematic communities and policy recommendations. Published many articles on governance, financial and EU aspects related to social housing.
Assessment: 
The applicant is validated for D under the thematic area of Sustainable Housing , as he meets 3 out of 4 criteria. The calls with referees also confirmed that he is very experienced in the selected topic.

Expertise support to local authorities and other stakeholders in designing & delivering integrated and participatory policies

E.1. Knowledge on participatory methods and tools for co-production and implementation of local polices : 
Coordinate and chair of ideation process sessions with groups of managers and policy makers in social housing sector. The objective of such sessions are to work together on the enrichment ideas to obtain well-defined and more effective projects or policies.
E.1 Assessment: 
0: The applicant did not provide examples of projects in which he has have been involved, indicating his role in designing and delivering participatory methods and tools for co-production and implementation of local policies
E.2. Knowledge on integrated approach for the design, delivering, monitoring and evaluation of urban strategies/policies: 
Drafted and coordinated the Social Report for the Affordable Housing bond (EUR 2 bn) issued by a major Dutch bank, that included social, economic, energy and environmental indicators at local level linked to the global SDG's. Main contributor to the yearly sectoral benchmarking overview with the financial position and social output of more than 300 housing providers.
E.2 Assessment: 
1: The applicant has provided one relevant example of a project where he applied monitoring tools (e.g. under Social Report for the Affordable Housing).
E.3. Awareness of the main policy and funding schemes for sustainable urban development at EU and national level: 
Worked since 2008 on EU policies for social housing, including advocacy work and dissemination work on making EU funding available for newbuild and (energy) renovations of social and affordable housing and ancillary urban investments. Well-informed about different EU sources of funding: ERDF, UIA, EFSI, EIB loans, JESSICA, ELENA, H2020, etc.
E.3 Assessment: 
1: The applicant demonstrates awareness of policy and funding schemes for sustainable urban development at EU and national level (e.g. through advocacy and dissemination work of different sources of funding: ERDF, UIA, EFSI, EIB, JESSICA, ELENA, H2020).
E.4. Ability to understand specific local situations and adapt tools and content to different local realities: 
Worked with cities and provinces in the design of housing policies and projects trying to adapt the local objectives with EU requirements in the field of state aid, public procurement, EU funding. E.g. contributed to writing of UIA proposal and ERDF fund for energy renovations.
E.4 Assessment: 
0: The applicant has not provided relevant specific examples of projects in which he has been involved, indicating his role in adapting tools and content at local level. He refers to his contribution to a UIA proposal and ERDF fund for energy renovations.
Assessment: 
The applicant only meets 2 out of 4 criteria under E, so the candidate is not validated for E. Since 2008 my work focuses on EU policies for social housing, including advocacy work and dissemination work on making EU funding available for newbuild and (energy) renovations of social and affordable housing and ancillary urban investments. Well-informed about different EU sources of funding: ERDF, UIA, EFSI, EIB loans, JESSICA and H2020. Direct experience with drafting many projects proposals and sharing expertise in granted projects. Worked with cities and provinces in the design of housing policies and projects trying to adapt the local objectives with EU requirements in the field of state aid, public procurement, EU funding. E.g. contributed to writing of UIA proposal and ERDF fund for energy renovations.

Informations

Residence location:
Belgium
Languages:
Dutch - Mother tongue, French - Mother tongue
Foreign Languages level: 
Foreign languages: 
,
Foreign Languages level: 
Foreign languages: 
Email:
sebastien.garnier@axha.eu

Area of expertise