Jaime Royo-Olid is Urban Development, Sustainable Transport and Digitalisation Senior Officer at the European Union (EU) Delegation to Kenya. With the EU, Jaime has previously managed development cooperation programmes in Cape Verde (2006-2008), Eritrea (2009 to 2012), and in Sri Lanka (2012 to 2018) where he directed the EU’s grant contributions for over 12 000 households who led their own housing reconstruction, implemented with UN-Habitat, Habitat for Humanity and other NGOs. Jaime edited a book on lessons learnt titled ‘Building, owning and belonging’ published by the EU and UN-Habitat in 2018.
While a student, Jaime founded Architecture Sans Frontières(ASF)-Cambridge (2001) that triggered the establishing of the ASF-UK charity (2003). His development career began in 2004 as the first coordinator of ASF-International. He then volunteered with NGO Architecture & Développement with whom he managed a post-tsunami community-driven housing reconstruction project in Tamil Nadu documented as best practice by UNDP India. In 2005, he became research assistant on Sustainable Humane Habitat in Developing Contexts at the University of Cambridge focusing on teaching master students on Indian urbanisation from a very low-cost and bioclimatic perspective.
Royo-Olid holds a BA with Honours (2001), a Diploma in Architecture (2004) and an MPhil in Development Studies (2006) from the University of Cambridge (UK) involving exchanges with MIT’s School of Planning (USA) and CEPT University, Ahmedabad (India). He is a specialist in Human Settlements by the ETSAM, (Spain). He is also a PhD candidate in Development Studies at the University of Cambridge researching on how to overcome the scarcity of affordable adequate housing amidst the financialisation of land markets in metropolitan Odisha, India.