Report Release Announcement: Exploring Policy and Regenerative Design

We are happy to announce the release of our latest report, detailing the findings from the third cohort’s six-month exploration into how policy changes can unlock regenerative design. Our report is now available for download, the findings of which offer a starting point for our next cohort investigating the intersection of policy and regenerative design.

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How to Have Ideas: Don’t Just Do Something, Sit There

Photo of Oliver Broadbent delivering the How to have ideas workshop - standing in front of a slide that says where do ideas come from

Last week, we were at the Institution of Structural Engineers delivering our ‘How to Have Ideas’ workshop to graduate engineers from Ridge Consulting.

Creative thinking is often the gap in the formal education and training of engineers. Yet, in the context of the climate emergency and a rapidly changing economy, creative thinking is crucial for developing designs that meet the needs of people and our wider ecology.

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Buying Bags of Kaleidoscopes: reflecting on how far ideas in teaching can travel

Photograph showing the sign outside the Cambridge university department of engineering

Today, Oliver concluded his series of six workshops as part of the Interdisciplinary Design for the Built Environment (IDBE) Masters program in Cambridge. In this final session, participants reviewed the material covered over the last five sessions, spread out over two years, and set objectives for their continued professional growth.

The series of six lectures aimed to integrate collaborative design skills into the Masters program, focusing on both creativity and collaboration.

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The Pattern Book – a new collaborative project in regenerative thinking

Earlier this month, we unveiled the Pattern Book project, an innovative workbook designed to guide professionals in the built environment towards regenerative design principles.  The Pattern Book is the next evolution in the development of the Regenerative Design Lab.

New patterns for the future

The Pattern Book aims to be an emergent, collaborative resource, offering a collection of tools, techniques, and resources under Creative Commons.

“We see in patterns, we recognize patterns, we create patterns. To create a world in which construction brings about thriving rather than destruction, we need new patterns for thinking about how we design and build,”

Oliver Broadbent
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Models and frameworks for regenerative design – cohort 2 report now live

The news is that we have now published our report from the second cohort of the Regenerative Design Lab. Each cohort of the Lab represents an evolution in our shared understanding of regenerative design. The breakthrough in this cohort was to test tools, techniques and language that make regenerative design easier to understand. These methods bring much-needed clarity to the broader conversation about how work in the construction industry can create thriving.

Our reports are written to be shared; the content to be used. So download a copy and please do share with anyone who you think would be interested.

Announcing the Regenerative Design Lab Summer Research Workshop

The Regenerative Design Lab community is growing. In 2022, the first 20 people began their journey through our pilot of the lab. Now over 50 people have completed the lab programme (and some of them have been through twice!).

So now our work as conveners of the Lab is as much about nourishing this existing community of regenerative practitioners as it is about recruiting more. And so to help support and further the work of this group of change-makers, we are holding our second summer research workshop.

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5 questions on regenerative design

With five days to go until the launch of the Regenerative Structural Engineer, here are some questions that we would hope you can answer once you have read it.

  1. What is the difference between regenerative design and sustainability design? Is this just a new version of sustainability or is this substantially different. What does regenerative design mean anyway!?
  2. Why do we need to go beyond being sustainable? Isn’t the path we are on already good enough? What about net-zero design – isn’t that enough?
  3. How can we change the way we design to create a transition a regenerative construction industry? What influence do I have as a structural engineer? Isn’t this someone else’s job?
  4. How do we start to think systemically about the changes we need to make in industry to enable regenerative practice? How do we reinforce the positive changes we seek? How do re-imagine how supply chains?
  5. How do we begin to imagine a regenerative future? What are the ways of thinking we need to adopt? And what are the ways of thinking we need to leave behind.

Intrigued? Pre-order your copy here. Available in print or online.

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Shifting the systemic barriers to regenerative design

The idea that construction should enhance ecosystems and communities rather than depleting them might sound like a given. After all, shouldn’t the world be genuinely better off, more resilient, thriving, and adaptable after we build something? This, in essence, is what a regenerative construction industry is all about.

However, when we start translating this approach to individual projects, we quickly encounter a plethora of barriers: supply chain restrictions, legislative hurdles, planning constraints, contractual structures, questions of long-term ownership, measurement and metrics, to name a few.

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