Makhosazana (Khosi) Mthethwa is an architect who is passionate about developments that seek to create connections between society, with nature and the rest of the environment. Walls & Roofs sat down with Khosi to talk about this increasingly important specialisation.  

Q: Tell us about your journey in architecture. 

A: I studied at the University of Cape Town from 2008 and completed my masters’ degree in architecture cum laude in 2013. For the past 13 years, I have been working with sustainable buildings as a green building design consultant and professional architect in leading groups in South Africa, with the following awards and accreditations: 

  1. Green Building Council of South Africa (GBCSA) Green Rising Star Industry Award recipient in 2022. 
  2. Green Star accredited professional: New buildings. 
  3. Green Star accredited professional: Net-zero. 
  4. Green Star accredited professional: Interior fit-out. 
  5. WELL Buildings accredited professional. 
  6. EcoDestricts accredited professional. 

      Q: What excites you most about your job/profession? 

      A: In this profession you must be interactive with different members of the team and build camaraderie with different professionals in the industry. Design teams I work with typically follow an integrated design approach, which is a collaborative process that focusses on the design, construction, operation and occupancy of a building over its complete lifecycle. 

      I enjoy working with tools like WELL Buildings, which have some focus of biophilia principles – which cultivates a sense of custodianship over the natural environment and its systems, therefore being important to sustainability and regenerative design agendas. 

      I also have a passion for knowledge sharing and academia as a means of my continuous personal growth, as well as to support education within the industry and learning institutions.   

      Q: What do you wish you’d known earlier? 

      A: The industry is very fast paced, and most programmes are relatively tight. Ensuring that sustainability principles are considered from very early on in a design process is important for all design team members and contractors. This is particularly important when looking to building net-zero energy developments.  

      Q: What three words would people use to describe you?  

      A: I’m an energetic and creative specialist architectural designer with a drive to achieve high-performance, climate-responsive built environments. 

      Q: What is your message to other women in the industry?  

      A: One of my biggest drivers is continual learning. A curious mind is a creative mind, so keep learning. With this you’ll be able to continue being relevant in this fast-changing industry and you’ll be an innovative thought leader. In the boardroom and on the construction site, speak up and be confident in yourself – people want to hear your thoughts and solutions. You have a lot to offer. 

      Support other women in the industry, whether it’s through referrals or advice. Let us empower each other. Remember to work smart and have a good work-life balance and above all, be kind to yourself and others. 

      “There is so much to learn out there – different design approaches, innovative solutions and different ways or tools to measure success in sustainable architecture design.” – Khosi Mthethwa 

      If you enjoyed this article, sign up for our newsletter
      Subscribe to our free magazine on or join other discussions like these on, and

      Your blueprint for success - Don't miss out on expert advice and industry updates.


      Subscribe to our weekly newsletter

      Stay in the loop! Knowledge is power.

      We aim to inspire, educate and entertain with our newsletters that address your building needs.