Jan Fransen (PhD and MA in development studies) is Deputy Director of the IHS, in charge of international education and training. He is a member of the advisory committee of the Africa Research Institute in Leiden and visiting scholar at POLIS University in Albania. He coordinates the course on urban theory in the master programme on Urban Management and Development and co-coordinates a short course on Sustainable Local Economic Development. In a previous position, he worked for the International Labour Organisation (ILO) of the United Nations based in Eastern and Southern Africa. Dr Fransen has over 20 years of experience in research, education and consultancy in the field of local economic development, with a particular interest in small firms, urban employment, capacity building, clustering, innovation systems, global value chains, labour-based technologies, institutional economics, evolutionary economics and complexity theory. Dr Fransen has completed a wide range of consultancy, training and research assignments and has held various positions including team leader, senior technical advisor, principal researcher and trainer. He has carried out assignments for the World Bank, European Commission, United Nations (UNDP, ILO, UN-HABITAT), NGO’s such as Cordaid and several national, regional and local governments world-wide. He has long and short-term working experience in over 20 countries, including Albania, China, Ecuador, Ethiopia, Kenya, Ghana, India, Indonesia, Malawi, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar, Netherlands, Namibia, Romania, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, South Korea, Tanzania, Uganda, Vietnam, Zambia and Zimbabwe.