This is a great way to start 2020 … with the recognition of the regenerative sustainability work and influence through Fairsnape, my associates and those I work with and for …
Triodos UK Sustainability Influencers 100
Ranked 49/100 along with awesome influencers, TV personalities and experts on Triodos Sustainable Social Media 100. The listing is to provide inspiration about who to follow on Twitter, and grow connections between everyone who’s interested in sustainability issues in the UK.
…. and one of my recent (co-authored) publications included in …
50 Business & Technology Books from Thinkers360 Thought Leaders!
Sustainability Restorative to RegenerativeOur RESTORE Cost Action publication that records the outputs of the sustainability working group (1). This publication, with contributions from over 20 EU countries is an exploration in progressing a paradigm shift in built environment thinking, from sustainability to restorative sustainability and on to regenerative sustainability. It presents a reference document for future work of the RESTORE Action, for other Cost Actions and for built environment academia and industry organisations.www,eurestore.eu | May, 2018 | Book | Martin Brown
What if we lived in a time when the human imagination flourished and anything felt possible.
It was back in 2008 when I first came across Rob Hopkins through his Transition Handbook. This helped shape a lot of my sustainability thinking at the time, (Time for built environment transition?) and in turn participation in Transition Town activities here in the North West. Writing in 2008, from a future 2030, Rob looked back over transition achievements, to when “in 2011, the Government initiated the concept of the Great Reskilling in the training of construction industry workers” with skills and mindset to address a sustainable future.
Of course that reskilling is still to happen within the built environment sector, and is ever important as we look to circular economy, toxic free and nature based construction techniques and materials. Fast forward to Rob’s latest book, What If …From What Is To What If … What if we had undertaken that construction re-skilling back then?.
What If does have a sprinkling of the climate doom gloom we face (and read in many climate change texts at the present) but the focus is on our capability to reimagine a better future and in asking the question how can we unleash the power of our imagination to create the future we want.
This resonates well with me, and with many of the messages I have used over recent years, in FutuREstorative in 2016 and in the series of #imaginebetter keynotes for Specifi and others through 2018 into 2019. And it is indeed core to the Living Building Challenge call to “imagine if every act of construction made the world a better place”
What If takes us on a deeper exploration of ‘imagination’ in an inspiring and urgent call for us to look deeper, to reconnect, with place, with nature, with ourselves and to reimagine a better future with a renewed sense of possibility.
Within sustainable design we focus on topics such as biophilia, that FutuREstorative described as the secret sauce for sustainability behaviour, to rekindle our believe that we can achieve a restorative future. Yet, spending 90% of our time in buildings we increasingly suffer solastalgia – a distress and yearning for earlier times, of better childhood memories, of a cleaner, more natural environment, that ebbs away our power to imagine a better environment, or reclaiming the one we have lost
Worringly, What If details how we are losing our capacity for imagination through dependency on technology, through loss of biodiversity, disconnection with nature and a degradation of of our environment, pushing us further into a spiral of being unable to imagine, and then achieve, a better future.
What is the impact on our imaginations of freefalling biodiversity and abundance? And, the corollary, is a diminished imagination to blame for the tolerance of such abject (biodiversity) tragedy?
What If revisits the power of our imagination, with stories, research and case studies, in play, as a vital element of our health, as a core element of connectivity with nature, of our ability to ask better questions and then importantly explores what if our imagination and desire for a better future came to pass.
On the dustcover, What If is described as a passionate call to action, to revive and to replenish not only our individual imaginations but a collective imagination, and once achieved there could be no end to what we may accomplish.
If you would like more information, or support in greater clarity, understanding and interpretation of these ‘new normal’ themes please do not hesitate to get in touch. (We provide support to many organisations, including further ‘deep dive’ training, in house awareness sessions, support for bids and pitching to clients or just a chat with your team)
However, importantly we provide kick off and ongoing support for projects. As I mention in the presentations every project should commence with a Biophilic Design workshop. Speak to us about organising and facilitating your next project’s kick off.
I was delighted to be invited to present in Italy (REGENERATION Edition 2 in Dro, Trentino) and Scotland (SEDA Green Drinks in Ayr) recently on insights from FutuREstorative, updates from the LBC Cuerdon Valley Park project and in the case of many at SEDA, introduce the Living Building Challenge.
The Ayr event fell on John Muir’s Birthday and on the eve of Earth Day 2016, so this made a fitting and related introduction, and I guess constituted my annual EarthDay presentation, (something I have done at numerous events annually since 2009 – 2009 presentation is on slideshare here)
“Let’s all become radical environmentalists” commented Patagonia chief executive Rose Marcario “As individual consumers, the single best thing we can do for the planet is to keep our stuff in use longer. This simple act of extending the life of our (stuff) through proper care and repair reduces the need to buy more over time, thereby avoiding the CO2 emissions, waste output and water usage required to build it.”
This remains in my mind, one of the more useful of circular economy thinking approaches
Patagonia’s Worm Well bus will be setting up temporary workstations at venues across the UK to repair garments, free of charge.
The UK leg is part of a wider five-country mission across Europe to extend the life of outdoor enthusiasts’ clothing. It starts on 15 April in the UK and Germany before moving on to other European countries.
It would be great to see this extended into other areas, more built environment related areas, for example, FM organisations holding free equipment repair workshops in buildings they operate, construction and consultancy organisations returning to their buildings and providing free sustainability advice and repair service … The opportunities based on circular economy business models are huge.
Put simply, if it’s broke, fix it! Dont replace it
Publication of FutuREstorative (set for Jul 2016) edges closer with the books product page going live on the RIBA Bookshop.
FutuREstorative: Working Towards a New Sustainability
This book aims to further the debate on new sustainability thinking in the built environment, by bringing together a selection of short contributions from thought leaders in the UK and the rest of the world with an overarching narrative from Martin Brown.
Although progress in sustainable solutions has been made over the past decade, the trend is still one of a woefully wasteful construction industry. This book aims to show that being ‘less bad’ is no longer good enough.
The book also spotlights digital sharing and collaboration through social media and BIM as new tools in the ‘sustainability toolbox’ which provide unique and powerful opportunities to rapidly advance sustainability thinking, development and action.
The Fairsnape iSite blog now in its 10th year with just under 1000 posts has been providing news, comment and challenges to the built environment sector and beyond. It is always great to get recognition, and am delighted that this blog is a Green category Best Blogger nominee for the 7th Annual 2016 JDR Industry Blogger Awards!
Voting is now open on the JDR website (from Monday, February 29th and closes April 15th)