Kristen Kish

Chef and TV personality, US

Having started her career at Barbara Lynch’s Menton in Boston, Kristen Kish – encouraged by Lynch to increase the visibility of females in the industry – entered and won the US series of Top Chef. She then headed back to Menton where she spent the next year honing her skills. Now, Kish is ready for the limelight once again, as the co-host of TV series 36 Hours. Inspired by a column, in The New York Times, it sees Kish explore food and culture in destinations around the world. Her favourite dish? ‘A roasted Iberian pork shoulder with a simple pepper and tomato sauce in Barcelona,’ she says. 

Photography: Austin and Cassie Huck

Shunpei and Shino Fujioka

Architects and hoteliers, Japan

After witnessing the rapid decline of traditional Machiya houses in Nara, Kansai, architect Shunpei Fujioka and his sister Shino made it their mission to preserve the city’s history and transform a series of the homes into holiday rental apartments. Fujioka and his father, also an architect, delicately renovated the townhouses, updating the interiors to include skylights and sleek new kitchens. Now comprising five houses, the project serves as a charming example of how to make these century-old homes relevant today. www.machiyado.com

Photography: Corey Fuller

Jesse Jorg

Urban creative, Netherlands

As the Amsterdam-based founder of We the City, Jesse Jorg has conceived a diverse collection of urban community projects, including Benches Collective, a social initiative that encourages locals to set up shop outside their homes and offer anything from a cup of coffee to a haircut; Buurtcamping, which transformed the city’s Oosterpark into a three-day campsite; and De Ceuvel, the regeneration of an abandoned shipyard into an urban oasis that houses offices and workshops. ‘My goal is to kick-start movement,’ explains Jorg. ‘Where city dwellers themselves, as opposed to the market or the government, take the lead in “making” their city.’ For his latest project, the Knowledge Mile, a once neglected strip is being turned by a series of educational institutions into a creative environment. www.wethecity.nl

Photography: Mirka Laura Severa

Douglas McMaster

Chef and owner, Silo, UK

‘Imagine a world without waste’ is the mantra that chef Douglas McMaster has staked his career on, after emerging as a champion of sustainability with his debut Brighton restaurant, Silo Influenced by the nose-to-tail culture of London’s St John restaurant and the zero-waste movement evangelist Joost Bakker, McMaster combines a strict ethical approach with culinary creativity to produce artful dishes. Every aspect of Silo is geared towards eradicating waste, from simple measures such as recycling leftover bakery yeast to make beer, to installing a unique composting machine to make fertiliser. On his vision, McMaster is forthcoming: ‘Silo is a restaurant of the future because it is an extreme example of necessary change, and others will follow with a conscientious attitude.’ www.silobrighton.com

Photography: Michiel Meewis