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This report describes the issues and themes raised during a series of three workshops, which explored the relationship between the design of the built environment and human behaviour. Each workshop addressed the three following areas: energy, water and waste; health and wellbeing; and performance and productivity. The report is published by the Royal Academy of Engineering and has been supported by experts from a range of organisations and disciplines.

Urban Innovation Centre- UK City Analytics Conference 2015

By Bridget Elliott on 29th July 2015
Found in: Events
Date and Time: 
Thursday, September 10, 2015 - 09:30 to 16:00

London, UK

A recent journal article considers whether sustainability measures constrain creativity in urban design. The paper argues that sustainability assessment methods do have something to contribute to creativity and innovation in urban design precisely because they encourage engagement with challenging and often complex societal priorities.

Innovate UK (previously known as the Technology Strategy Board) yesterday launched the final report of the Design for Future Climate: Adapting Buildings (D4FC) programme. The report is a culmination of £5M funding and 4 years of work by up to 240 companies on £4.2BN of capital projects across England and Wales. The report analyses the drivers that affect the market for professional building design services to ready buildings for the changing climate. It also develops the business case for adaptation to move from niche research to mainstream.

A recent report published by the UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) provides guidance on science, technology and innovation-related policies and practices that can lead to sustainable urbanisation. The report details how cities that prioritise sustainable growth patterns can improve employment and competitiveness, enhance social cohesion and create a healthy and liveable urban environment.

Drawing together expertise from across the University of Reading (including the new Institute for Environmental Analytics) the School of Construction Management and Engineering has recently launched a new position paper in which it is argued 'big data' and 'smart thinking' both provide powerful potential benefits for cities, but there is a need to recognise the key challenges associated with these concepts.

Date and Time: 
Tuesday, June 23, 2015 - 09:30 to 16:00

Peterborough, UK

In the built environment, disparities exist between policy intentions and actual outcomes. There is a lack of feedback or feed-forward loops for improving the relationship between the making of policy and subsequent understanding of its intended (or unintended) consequences. Research in this special issue identifies the illusions, expectations, processes, use/abuse of evidence and predictions, as well as the capabilities and capacities for delivery and assessment.

Cambridge Architectural Research's report for the Campaign to Protect Rural England shows what energy and carbon savings are possible by upgrading homes. Empirical evidence drawn from interviews with householders in three locations around England is presented, providing examples of the savings achieved by proactive households.

European Commission green infrastructure brief

By Bridget Elliott on 22nd April 2015
Found in: Research and Resources

A recent European Commission brief argues that rooftop gardens in cities could supply cities with more than three quarters of their vegetable requirements. The brief is based on evidence from a case study from Bologna, Italy. In  2010,  Bologna  became  the  first  Italian  city  to  test  rooftop  vegetable  gardens  on  public buildings.

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