Mace People

Jennifer Bradfield

Associate Director

Consultancy, Ireland

Jennifer Bradfield has delivered complex major programmes and projects for Mace around the globe. Now she’s returned to her native Ireland to help transform the future of Irish infrastructure by redefining the Irish Water infrastructure programme.

How did you get in to what you do?

I was 12 when I first became interested in construction. My mother was building our home from the ground up and I already liked technical drawing, art, physics, and maths. This all pointed me towards architecture.

I went on to do an undergraduate degree in architecture, but I couldn't quite connect with the industry’s shift towards more computer-based work. This drove me to a Masters degree in Construction Project Management. While studying, I also worked part-time for a small fitout and refurbishment contractor and, together, these influences set me on my career path.

How has your career progresses since joining Mace?

I first encountered Mace while working for a delivery partner on London 2012’s Athletes’ Village. Soon after, I joined Mace as an assistant project manager, heading out to Qatar to work on the Ashghal public works programme. I felt so supported while I was there and so I developed quickly and became a project manager.

Mace then gave me the opportunity to relocate to the United Arab Emirates where I joined the Expo2020 scheme. It was a great move as it was a programme management role that incorporated elements of construction management. It allowed me to develop my skills further and gave me a chance to be more 'hands on'.

After my time in the Middle East, I moved to the UK to work as a Senior Project Manager on the Heathrow Expansion programme and, most recently, I returned to Ireland and joined the Irish Water infrastructure programme.

I'll always be grateful to Mace for giving me the opportunity to work abroad. Its shaped me into the person that I am. I’ve learned so much and I’m really pleased to be able to bring those lessons back to my home country.

What do you enjoy most about your current role at Mace?

I find big infrastructure programmes both exciting and challenging. In all of my roles, I’ve always looked to build knowledge and push myself and I’m getting to do just that working in a new sector and with a new team. I’m also now responsible for bringing less experienced team members on the journey with me, helping them to understand the processes in place and how to best support the client. Working with Mace, I’ve had the opportunity to work all over the world, but it feels especially rewarding to be doing all of this in my home country because I know just how big of an impact infrastructure can have. We’re going to need infrastructure forever and just knowing the massive impact that it has all over the world, and on the future growth of Ireland, is a real driver for me.

What do you hope you will be doing in the next 5-10 years?

I’d definitely like to be a leading influencer within the Irish market; someone that is working collaboratively and challenging the norm to deliver in a better way. If we can get the industry thinking differently, we can influence the change that’s needed to realise the ambition of Project Ireland 2040.

I think Ireland has so much to offer and I don’t think that’s celebrated enough so I’d like to challenge that. There is also a lot of support needed when it comes to encouraging female and diverse talent within our industries, and in particular Ireland, and I’d like to be a part of that change to a more diverse talent pool that welcomes wider and different perspectives.

If you hadn’t got into this line of work what do you think you might be doing?

I'd have liked to do something that involved helping young people develop in whatever path they wish to take. In construction you get a lot of satisfaction from delivering projects that support the communities, but I think I would have also enjoyed working closely with younger generations, mentoring and coaching them with the lessons I have learned in my own career journey.


“We’re going to need infrastructure forever and just knowing the massive impact that it has all over the world, and on the future growth of Ireland, is a real driver for me.”