Who we are

Natalie Headshot

Dr Natalie Edwards


Nat holds a PhD in gender, media and cultural theory - developing through her doctoral research an enduring interest in narrative and the construction and evolution of meaning in culture.

Since moving into commercial semiotics and cultural insight, she has collaborated with clients on brands spanning categories from food, personal care and pharma to TV and media, telecommunications and financial services. An accomplished semiotician, she helps companies both large and small tell more effective stories about themselves.

Sián Pearce

Siân Pearce


Siân brings to Canopy over ten years of experience in corporate communications, having worked in sustainability and CSR communication roles across the energy and aviation sectors.

She has conducted global semiotic analyses across a broad range of sectors and specialises in semiotics-led brand positioning for emerging global markets.

Siân holds an MA in sustainability and human security and an MSc in demography and health from LSHTM.

Eve Simnett

Eve Simnett

Senior Analyst

Eve has a background in qualitative research and film production, and holds a BA in Cultural Sociology.

She brings to Canopy a keen interest in and knowledge of global youth subcultures, and an enthusiasm for the deconstruction (and re-construction) of global brand identities.

Sam Ward Headshot Black And White

Dr Sam Ward

Project Director

Sam specialises in closely-focused analysis aimed at uncovering the underlying meanings and opportunities in brand designs and across cultures.

He has a PhD in Media Studies from the University of Nottingham and has taught widely on the intersection of brand strategy and new technologies.

Claire Thomas Headshot

Claire Thomas

Senior Analyst

Claire's interest in research techniques including semiotics and ethnography began when studying for her first degree at the LSE, where she specialised in Social Anthropology.

She went on to do a post grad in marketing at Kingston University to explore how research could be used in a commercial context. From here, she began a career in qualitative research, successfully running her own company (Mosquito) for several years, and most recently working at RDSi as a director.

Ally Castle

Ally Castle


Ally is a creative strategist, specialising in content and communication in broadcasting.

A former Senior Planner for BBC Entertainment, BBC Comedy and BBC Three, Ally uses many techniques – including audience insight, content analysis, storytelling tools and workshop facilitation – to develop frameworks in which creativity and editorial judgement can flourish.

She has a passion for supporting others in the innovation process.