Join our team

We’re looking for volunteers to join our Project MAYA team! We have four fixed-term voluntary positions available to work on our SEEDBALL project, each on a ‘work from home’ basis for a minimum of four hours a week.

If you are interested in any of the following positions please apply with a CV and covering letter stating why you would be suitable to Dr. Anna Evely ( Please state the title of the position you are applying for in the subject line.

Campaigns Coordinator (#nomow & ‘Feed the Bees’)

SEEDBALL Marketing Coordinator

Press Officer

SEEDBALL Sales Assistant

New arrivals

Yay! In the last week we launched our brand new SEEDBALL packaging ! We can’t believe how wonderful it feels to finally have our lovely new tins with us. We’ve been working on the re-design for quite a while now (since June last year!) and can’t believe the time has finally come to unveil!

We love how the tins fit snuggly inside your hand, and the fact that they come from the last tin maker in London ‘Toon’ (just look at their fab website), we just love the use of colour, the happy-go-lucky typeface and the stunning pics of wildflowers on the back. AND… we have a barcode! Our beautiful seed balls couldn’t have a better home. 

The new tins are sold online via our website - come say hi!

Launch of new training course on research impact

This week Project MAYA, in collaboration with Dr Mark Reed and Diana Pound (Dialogue Matters), have launched a new training course with support from Living with Environmental Change (LWEC). The training is based on new Knowledge Exchange Guidelines that are being launched by the LWEC partnership at their Annual Assembly in Birmingham. The courses are for anyone who wants to learn how to work collaboratively with those who are likely to use their research to achieve greater impact.

To achieve this, researchers need to invest time, skills and effort in effective knowledge exchange, where learning from those who will use their research is as important as sharing their research findings. This includes facilitating a process of participation, dialogue, and mutual learning with stakeholders and research users from the earliest opportunity and throughout the research process

But few researchers are confident that they know the best way to do this. And now that impact is being measured in the Research Excellence Framework, the knowledge exchange skills needed to achieve impact are becoming increasingly important for promotion.

Two training courses have been designed to equip researchers with the tools and principles they need to run a successful knowledge exchange programme based on the latest research and award-winning practices. Participants will discover the best way to ensure that their research makes a very real difference in the world, whether that means it is picked up in policy and practice or through commercialisation.

A one day course has been designed to give researchers an introduction to working collaboratively with stakeholders, and to help them learn how to integrate knowledge exchange more effectively into their work. A three day course is also being offered, where researchers can learn about good practice stakeholder participation in research, gain skills in facilitation and process design, and explore the benefits and challenges of involving stakeholders in research. Both courses use examples from environmental research and practice, but are relevant to researchers from many fields.

The courses are taught by recognised international leaders in knowledge exchange and stakeholder participation. Dr. Mark Reed and Dr. Anna Evely (of project MAYA) are at the forefront of research to understand the mechanisms through which knowledge exchange and participation operates. They have won awards for the impact of their research on environmental sustainability, and helped develop the Living With Environmental Change partnership’s Knowledge Exchange Guidelines.

Dialogue Matters help people share knowledge and make better decisions about the environment. Well designed and skilfully facilitated stakeholder dialogue is key to this. Set up in 2000, they have an excellent track record and receive consistently positive feedback from sponsoring organisations, stakeholders and trainees alike. Working across the UK and internationally, they have designed over 70 processes (including 100 workshops) and trained nearly 1000 people.

To find out more about the training and to book your place, visit:

Update from Maya Italia

It’s been an exciting year so far for MAYA Italia! Our Roma-based MAYA team have been involved in a number of super collaborations with Landemed – a project looking at the planning and management of urban green spaces and urban eco-systems in Italy.

E’ stato un anno eccitante fin’ora per MAYA Italia! Roma-Il nostro team di MAYA è stato coinvolto in una serie di collaborazioni eccellenti con Landemed – un progetto che si occupa della pianificazione e della gestione sostenibile degli spazi verdi e degli ecosistemi urbani in Italia.

Last month, MAYA Director Nina, and Associate Annachiara (also of Landemed) created the PermaCult mobile – an urban growing system for balconies that incorporates both irrigation and temperature systems:

Il mese scorso, le due socie del progetto MAYA, Nina e Annachiara, hanno creato il mobile PermaCult, un piccolo sistema urbano per la coltivazione di spezie e ortaggi sui balconi che segue i principi della permacultura:

Synergy with waterthe water poured in the funnel flows from the top drawer (here we chose plants well-adapted to arid ecosystems – caper, thyme, and oregano) to the middle one (basil, chives and spring onions) and finally to the bottom and wettest drawer (where we put different kinds of sprouts).

Synergy with animals: the cat (could also have been a dog house or a rabbit hole or a chicken cage..) releases CO2 and methane needed by the plants; in exchange, the plants keep the animal house at a constant temperature.

Other cool stuff: the wheels make the PermaCult mobile easy to move around chasing the sun/shade, while on the top of the mobile there is a glove compartment to keep the garden tools and the ‘introduction to permaculture’ book ;o)

Sinergia con l’acqua: l’acqua versata nell’imbuto fluisce dal cassetto superiore (in questo caso abbiamo scelto piante ben adattate agli ecosistemi aridi, come capperi, timo e origano) a quella di mezzo (basilico, erba cipollina e cipollotti) e infine al cassetto inferiore e più umido, dove sono stati messi diversi tipi di germogli.

Sinergia con gli animali: il gatto (potrebbe anche essere stata una cuccia di cane o di coniglio o una gabbia per polli ..) rilascia CO2 e metano necessari dalle piante, in cambio, le piante mantengono lla casa degli animali a temperatura costante.

Altro elemento utile: le ruote rendono il mobile PermaCult facile da spostare, all’inseguimento del sole o dell’ombra a seconda delle necessità; mentre sulla parte superiore del mobile c’è un vano portaoggetti per mantenere gli attrezzi da giardino e il libro ’Introduzione alla Permacultura’ per farsi ispirare su nuove idee ;o)

The pictures above show the PermaCult mobile being presented at the Festival del Verde e del Paesaggio (literally festival of the Green and of the Landscape) at the Audiotorium Parco della Musica in Rome. A brilliant opportunity to meet landscape planners, horticulturists, gardeners, green lovers and many many others…

Le immagini qui sopra mostrano il mobile PermaCult presentato al Festival del Verde e del Paesaggio all’ Audiotorium Parco della Musica di Roma. Una splendida opportunità per incontrare progettisti del paesaggio, orticoltori, giardinieri, amanti verdi e molti altri ancora…

In other MAYA Italia news, Nina and Antwerp-based Associate Eva-Maria launched the MAYA Eco-Photo Gallery Project – a collection of images taken by MAYA associates covering all aspects of people, place and planet. Check it out – It’s pretty cool! – plus the photo’s are freely available for non-profit/educational purposes. For more info email

Inoltre Nina e la nostra socia di Anversa, EvaMaria, hanno creato il MAYA Eco-Photo Gallery Project, una collezione di immagini raccolte tra tutti i soci MAYA che coprono i vari aspetti delle nostre ricerche, la gente, gli habitat, il pianeta. Buttateci un occhio, ne vale la pena! Per di più le foto sono utilizzabili gratuitamente per scopi educativi. Per maggiori

Ciao for now,

MAYA Italia

Green fair calling

Any plans for the weekend of the 9th and 10th of June? Live in or around London? If your answer is no followed by yes, we totally recommend a visit to Regent’s Park, where the London Green Fair will be taking place! We’ve whittled it down to 5 incredible reasons why we think a trip to the Fair will be the perfect way to spend a summers day:

  1. London is a hive of green activity! From local farmers, living streets, permaculture, green roofs and real nappies…it’s not always easy to keep up! The London Green Fair seeks to bring all this together in one park for one weekend, so we can all hopefully catch a glimpse of just how much cool stuff is out there
  2. One of the best (and most simple) ways to 'do your bit' is to buy locally and sustainably sourced goods. The Fair will be hosting a whole bunch of eco-friendly business, from local food producers (such as The People’s Supermarket) & hand-made crafts (including recycled Wellington boots left over from Glastonbury last year), to ethical fashion and heath products.
  3. Learn more! Want to know more about Rio+20, why biofuels are so frowned upon, how to follow a career in the environment sector, how to grow an urban forest garden, and how to ride a wind-powered bike?! There’s a massive array of workshops, talks and fun stuff to get involved with (plus a children’s eco-zone!)
  4. BOOGIE in the sunshine  There’s tonnes of live music that’s ‘guaranteed to get you jumping’. Can’t say more than that really…
  5. Project MAYA will be there!!! We’ll be in the market stalls selling our latest MAYA product – seed balls! Not only will we be selling our normal seed ball packs (£4.50 each), but we’ll also offer the unique opportunity to buy seed balls, one ball at a time (15p each). We’ll have funky paper bags so you can ‘pick n’ mix’ whatever seed balls you (and your garden) would best like. Even if seed balls isn’t you’re style, we’d still love it if you’d pop along and say hi!!

Hopefully see you there!

Smile: Good ideas are infectious!

The Sustainable Learning project have today released a trailer for their new film on knowledge exchange, ‘Smile: Good Ideas are Infectious!’.  The film discusses our need to better understand how knowledge is generated and shared in order to more effectively attain our goals for environmental sustainability, and shows that smiles – like good ideas – are infectious, even on the streets of London. There’s even a couple of MAYA faces along the way!!

The full film will be shown next week at the conference ‘Planet Under Pressure 2012‘, and it will also be made available online (we’ll post the full film here on our Blogspace).

Happy Smiling! 


For more information on the Sustainable Learning project, see