Hannah Lyons-Tsai

Purpose-led Innovation | Transitions | Eco-systemic Learning


A recent graduate (with distinction) from Central Saint Martin's MA Innovation Management programme.  I am moved to empower organisations and communities to adopt the complexity mindset required to innovate with purpose.  

My practice centres around mapping connections and systems whilst facilitating the building of visions; the seeds of innovation that grow from the 'cracks in the pavement'.  These can be cultivated to grow niche innovations which emerge to shift the current paradigm towards better living. 

As an innovation practitioner, I aim to water these niches by drawing on my complex academic and career experience set that spans the legal and fashion sectors, giving me a unique social, business and marketing perspective. 


“Mastery, has less to do with pushing leverage points than it does with strategically, profoundly, madly, letting go and dancing with the system.” - Donella Meadows, 2009


Career History

Education and Experience

MA Innovation Management, Central Saint Martin's

Distinction grade in this master’s degree which explored innovation management for social purpose, combining business and creativity:

  • Practical projects have centred around collaborative working to co-design solutions for systemic challenges:

    • Designing a circular economy service to tackle food waste

    • Fulfilling a live brief for a packaging company to encourage sustainability through

      behaviour change interventions

  • Co-leader of a team responsible for building external partnerships to deliver our collective

    degree showcase

  • Facilitating project progress of multi-disciplinary teams using project management tools,

    design-thinking and agile frameworks

  • Personal research question: ‘If visions of sustainable transition are the seeds, how can an

    innovation manager create the fertile soil for them to propagate?’; A framework for enabling sustainable visions designed through the lens of Permaculture and regenerative soil practice

BA Fashion Business, London College of Fashion

Graduating with a first-class honours from this part-time degree which examined the business of fashion from practical and cultural perspectives.

Final dissertation: ‘Fashioning Sustainability: A practical business plan for creating an accessible sustainable fashion industry’; rationale and plan for community focused B- Corporation applying Lean Start-Up principles

Freelance marketing, editorial & project co-ordination roles

In the past 6 years, I have been contracted to provide services for multiple partners, including: 

  • Centre for Sustainable Fashion

  • Forevermark 

  • ASOS

  • Po-Zu

  • Fitflop

  • Liberty

Personal projects

Completing a Permaculture internship in Portugal to understand systemic design principles and learn from regenerative food and community practices

Practicing food growing, whilst learning the best practices for more sustainable living

I always volunteer during my spare time and in recent years have:

  • Built a personal network of change-makers, organising pop-ups, film screenings and conferences in the field of sustainability and social justice

  • Volunteered with Institute for the Imagination, facilitating play and workshop activities

  • Fundraised and facilitated community engagement for Labour Behind the Label, organising events in collaboration with Lush Cosmetics

  • Researched for the emerging Transition Lab into charity models and community volunteer placement opportunities

  • Been a shelter volunteer with Caring at Christmas

  • Participated in WaterAid, Kickstarter and Climate-KIC hackathons

Executive and legal assistant career history

​In a 'past-life' I was employed at five legal organisations (across Bristol and Dubai), experience included:

  • 2+ years co-ordinating CSR and internal fundraising activities across the MENA region for Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP

  • Relationship and empathy building with clients, whilst striving to deliver the best outcome for them

  • Negotiating settlements with adverse organisations; advocating for injured parties to be justly compensated for injuries and out-of-pocket expenses

  • On-the-job personal development and vocational qualifications through CILEX

  • High-level administrative, client relationship management, and financial operations support to teams of lawyers