About Us

Chiang Mai Nayu

The Journey Towards Sustainability

Chiang Mai Nayu was born out of the idea of us wanting to make Chiang Mai an even more pleasant city to live in today and thinking about the next generation and what they will inherit. We chose to live in Chiang Mai because we felt Chiang Mai had some key strengths, such as climate, with a good amount of rain and sun, and the location. Located in the tropics but also in the mountains, so having both warm and sunny weather but also cooler seasons. Due to its location in the globe, we realized that Chiang Mai was very well situated to become a regional hub for growing highly desirable, high quality and high margin produce such as avocado, coffee and cacao. We saw a lot of potential, but we also observed some opportunities being missed. Opportunities related to food quality, air quality, water quality and opportunities related to the “Circular Economy” and “Closing the Loop”, which basically means operating an organization while having respect for nature, the environment and people. But importantly, the Circular Economy also means focusing upon innovation and creating jobs in the local economy through among other things, repurposing waste into products. For example, reducing and recycling waste, using renewable natural resources and creating completely new products that are renewable and biodegradable such as plant-based products. Then we realized, we didn’t actually know the exact situation in Chiang Mai with regards to many important topics such as air and water quality, food safety, long-term living conditions etc and that left us wondering how we might fill in this gap of knowledge. The inspiration for Chiang Mai Nayu arose. ‘Nayu’ means a flourishing and sustainable city in Thai.


2018 & 2019


We initiated the process of understanding what residents thought about the current state of Chiang Mai with regards to the four key dimensions of sustainability and what they would like to see in the medium long term. What they would keep and what they would change. These public workshops were designed to listen to the communities’ concerns and understand the solutions they would like to see with regards to making Chiang Mai a more sustainable and enjoyable city to live in. To reach a larger audience, we created a public survey in Thai and English with the same purpose and launched this survey at the 2019 at the City Life Festival.


2020 & 2021


With the information we collected from the public from the previous two years, we were now able to define the key 'sustainability indicators' under each dimension and begin the process of visually displaying this information online. With the help of an expert, we designed and created the website along with the online dashboard to present the 20 “sustainability indicators” associated with the four key dimensions of sustainability (5 indicators for each dimension). Moving forward, we aim to present the 'trend data' for each of these indicators, so as to inform the public as to how Chiang Mai is progressing with regards to each of these indicators.


2022 & Forward
Chiang Mai Nayu


After several months of research, we are excited to launch our first research brief. The sustainability indicator is Waste, specifically Waste Recycling in Chiang Mai. Firstly, a deep dive both into the current situation in Thailand and Chiang Mai was performed to really understand where we are today. With new understandings of Thailand’s national waste policy, we then described a series of solutions, at both municipal, organization and residence level that can take place to greatly improve waste sorting and recycling in Chiang Mai. A book version of this research and the free PDF document are available from the online dashboard both in Thai and English.


Chiang Mai Nayu was born to fill that gap both in our knowledge and the publics knowledge. To help inform the public as to where Chiang Mai is today, and how Chiang Mai is doing in many diverse but complementary and important areas that impact the standard of living for all the residents. In fact, we have a bold vision, to support Chiang Mai to become one of South East Asia’s most healthy and sustainable cities. To be a living model of a sustainable liveable city, but we realized we couldn’t do this alone. In this journey towards making Chiang Mai become more sustainable, we would need help from the municipality, the universities, the monasteries, the local business and tourism community and of course from all residents. And we wanted to bring institutions, organizations and businesses together to work on the different dimensions of sustainability. And we want to inspire the local community to join us and take action and participate in this journey of sustainability together. We feel it’s not only a worthwhile cause, but our duty as the current adults responsible for looking after Chiang Mai and its natural resources, to inspire the youth to take on this vision and body of work to the next generation.


City Life Fair 2019

Public Survey


With such a bold vision of a future sustainable city, we knew we had work to do to initiate our mission to contribute to the city’s sustainability transformation! During our first two years of existence (2018/19), we focused our attention upon reaching out to the public, including participating at the City Life Fair in 2019. We sought feedback and collected opinions from residents, both Thai and foreign, about their current and future concerns of living in Chiang Mai. After 24th months of engaging with the public we collected a great amount of public feedback. This initial information was crucial to move us into phase two. The next two years (2020/21) were dedicated to studying the information received and identify the top 5 “sustainability indicators” within each of the four key dimensions of sustainability (Nature, Economy, Society and Wellbeing). The end result culminated in the creation of 20 “sustainability indicators” for the online dashboard and the formation of the “blueprint of sustainability” for Chiang Mai City. Now available for free in our website, visible through the online dashboard. Looking into the future this “blueprint of sustainability” requires the trend data to depict where the city is today and how it is progressing towards becoming more sustainable.

The purpose of our mission is to deliver the ‘visualization’ of the ‘trend data’, that being data that is collected over several previous years or even decades to show a trend, a direction in which the city is heading on any particular ‘indicator’. The trend data is collected from the municipality, universities and organizations and then visually displayed on the online dashboard for the public to comprehend. Seeing the dashboard as a whole inter-connected source of information as opposed to separate fields of data is when the meaning of ‘blueprint of sustainability’ emerges. When food safety, is combined with natural farming, clean air and clean water, recycling waste with local jobs, clean air with increased tourism and longevity of the local population. When we start to observe these inter-connected relationships, then the blueprint of what it means to live and operate as a healthy and sustainable city, really starts to emerge. All aligned to the original idea and vision, to assist Chiang Mai in becoming one of South East Asia’s most healthy and sustainable city’s.

The geographical focus is upon the city and district of Chiang Mai.

Chiang Mai Nayu Logo


Soi Ban Ling Ha 9, Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai 50200, Thailand