Leeds Sustainability Institute

Open Knowledge Exchange and Sharing

Author: Liz Schofield (page 1 of 8)

All RISE for the next generation of green building pioneers


pp (107)

The winners of awards which celebrated research, innovation, sustainability and enterprise in the built environment have been announced by Leeds Beckett University.

Over a hundred industry and academic professionals gathered at the Park Plaza hotel in Leeds for the inaugural RISE awards (#RISEawards). Organised by the Leeds Sustainability Institute and the Centre for Knowledge Exchange at Leeds Beckett University and sponsored by Saint-Gobain UK, the awards celebrated the most pioneering sustainability research and development in the industry.

Presented by Professor Chris Gorse, Director of the Leeds Sustainability Institute at Leeds Beckett, the awards brought industry and academic bodies together for the first time, to reward innovation across eight different categories representing the four key strands of the RISE Awards; Research, Innovation, Sustainability and Enterprise. In a change from the usual application process, entrants were encouraged to use their creativity and create a one to two page visual poster outlining their project, product or initiative.

Speaking about the awards, Professor Chris Gorse, Director of the Leeds Sustainability Institute at Leeds Beckett University, said: “The construction industry faces a huge challenge to become more energy efficient and sustainable, reducing the built environment’s contribution to climate change.

The RISE initiative has brought together leading construction partners, all with a keen desire to take the construction sector forward, forging a more sustainable and innovate industry.  The level of creativity demonstrated in the entries to ensure products and buildings are successful in the field was exceptional. Those commended and whom have achieved a RISE award have set a high benchmark on which we can build.

“The strength and diversity of approaches to sustainable design and construction means there is much to build on.   We have set our journey to become, not only a Centre for Knowledge Exchange at Leeds Beckett, but one of excellence where the potential that can be achieved through industry and academic engagement is recognised.  Being part of the celebrations that recognise those pushing at the boundaries was an honour.”

Winners and those highly commended on the night were from a range of businesses; from architects to contractors to product designers and construction consultancies. Those who triumphed included Arc Building Solutions in the Field Research category for their innovative Eaves Insulator product, Leeds Environmental Design Associates in the Design, Innovation and Creativity category and BAM Construction who walked away with the behavioural change gong for their project addressing the energy performance gap on their builds. Innovative local developer CITU also picked up yet another award to add to their ever expanding trophy cabinet for their Little Kelham project, this time in the Sustainable Development category. Special awards were also given out on the night to Rockpanel, Yeme Architects and Saint-Gobain. Congratulations to all the winners (a full list can be found below)

The awards were a huge success and a fitting grand finale to the Sustainable Ecological Engineering Design (SEEDS) conference held at Leeds Beckett.  This international conference explored how buildings and spaces are designed to reduce negative impacts on the environment, with keynote speakers, workshops and presentations focusing on how to address the balance between the built and the natural environment.

pp (114)


Tom Cox, Research and Development Manager at Saint-Gobain UK added: “Saint-Gobain UK was delighted to support the first ever SEEDS Conference and RISE awards with its vision to support and promote productive academic and industry research partnerships. Our team had an excellent evening which was a fitting celebration to two highly enjoyable days of learning, debate and discussion. We will continue to work closely with the forward-thinking team at Leeds Sustainability Institute in the future.”


AWARD 1 – Field & Laboratory Research

ARC Building Solutions

Highly commended
Mott MacDonald

AWARD 2 – Product & Element Interface

Bauman Lyons Architects

Highly commended

AWARD 3 – New Technologies


Highly commended
C-Probe Systems Limited

AWARD 4 – Design, Innovation & Creativity


Highly commended

AWARD 5 – Sustainable Development & Energy


Highly commended
Green Building Store

AWARD 6 – Heritage Award for Restoration & Retrofit

Green Building Store

Highly commended
C-Probe Systems Limited

Highly commended
Studio Polpo

AWARD 7 – Behavioural Change

BAM Construction

Highly commended

Highly commended
Morgan Sindall

AWARD 8 -Enterprise

Mott MacDonald

Highly commended
ARC Building Solutions

Special RISE Awards

1. Chair’s Award for Most Innovative & Sustainable Approach to Restoration

Yeme Architects

Highly commended
Studio Polpo

2. CKE Special Award


Highly commended
Collett and Sons

3. Arts, Environment & Technology Special Award

Wakefield & District Housing

Highly commended
Rex Procter & Partners (Energy Services)

4. Leeds Sustainability Institute Award


Highly commended
A-one+ Integrated Highway Services

SEEDS Academic Award for Best Poster

Beverley Clifton Morris and Liverpool John Moores University

Highly commended
A-one+ Integrated Highway Services

SEEDS Academic Award for Best Technical Poster

Mott MacDonald

Highly commended
Martin Fletcher, Felix Thomas and Adrian Appleyard

SEEDS Conference Awards

1. CIOB Award for Best Academic Paper

Richard Jack, Dennis Loveday, David Allinson and Kevin Lomas

Highly commended
Joe Williams, Doctor Mike Lawrence and Professor Pete Walker

Highly commended
Fiona Fylan, Chris Gorse and David Glew

2. CIOB Award for Best Technical Paper

Guillaume Lethé

Highly commended
Francesco Pomponi, Poorang A.E. Piroozfar and Eric R.P. Farr

Highly commended
Dave Farmer, Chris Gorse, Dominic Miles-Shenton, Matthew Brooke-Peat and Calum Cuttle

3. LSI Award for Most Pragmatic Approach to Sustainability

Jody Harris, Andy Dougill and Alice Owen

Highly commended
Rachel Huxley

Highly commended
Ian Adrian Fletcher

4. LSI Award for Contribution to the Field

Fisayo Caleb Sangogboye, Olaf Droegehorn and Jari Porras

Highly commended
Iqbal Ahmed, Alexandra Klimova, Eric Rondeau and Andrei Rybin

Highly commended
Paul Chatterton

5. LSI Award for Paper Addressing a Developing Need

Oriel Kenny, Isobelle Logan, Andrew Swan and Jono West

Highly commended
Chuma Sineke and John Smallwood

Highly commended
Anthony J. Smith, Martin Pritchard and Alan Edmondson

6. LSI Award for Paper Addressing a Social Need

Martin Pritchard, Alan Edmondson, Tom Craven and Theresa Mkandawire

Highly commended
Richard Cozzens

Highly commended
Kevin Thomas and Ian Dickinson

7. SEEDS Award for Contribution to the Built Environment

Sara Lilley, Gill Davidson, Barry J. Gledson and Zaid Alwan

Highly commended
Fidelis Emuze

Highly commended
James Parker

8.SEEDS Award for Contribution to the Natural Environment

Agnieszka Knera, James Parker and Alan Poxon

Highly commended
Nicola Caravaggio and Martina Iorio

Highly commended
Hasan Hamouda, Nadine Abu-Shaaban and Eman Al-Swaity

9. Chair’s Award

Christopher Allen and Katharina Crafford

Highly commended
Erica Marshall, Julia Steinberger, Tim Foxon and Valerie Dupont

Highly commended
Benjamin A J Martin, Dawa Masih, Benson Lau, Paolo Beccarelli and John Chilton

From little SEEDS… celebrating research and development with our International Conference and grand finale RISE awards

Sustainable, Ecological, Engineering Design for Society Conference

Rosebowl, Leeds Beckett University
17th & 18th September 2015

The Leeds Sustainability Institute at Leeds Beckett University are proud to be hosting this inaugural conference which aims to foster ideas, through research and proven practice, on how to reduce negative impacts on the environment while providing for the health of society. Our two day event will address the interdependence of people, the built and natural environments, and explore the interdisciplinary and international themes required to assemble the knowledge required for positive change.

The built environment has a greater impact on natural resources and produces more waste than any other industry. However, beyond the green rhetoric, research is being applied on the ground to address the balance between the built and natural environment. The aim of the International SEEDS Conference is to foster ideas, through research and proven practice, on how to reduce negative impacts on the environment while providing for the health of society. The professions and fields of research required to ensure buildings meet user demands and provide healthy enclosures are many and diverse. The SEEDS conference addresses the interdependence of people, the built and natural environments, and recognises the interdisciplinary and international themes required to assemble the knowledge required for positive change.

The Conference will bring together experts from around the world to focus on the impact of the built environment, the changes that are taking place in the industry, and the benefits and consequences of change that are being predicted and measured. The focus of discussion and debate will be on understanding how buildings and spaces are designed and nurtured to obtain the optimal outcome. As well as addressing technical issues, measuring energy efficiency and modelling energy performance, emphasis will be placed on the health and wellbeing of the users of spaces occupied. This holistic approach will draw together the research themes of energy, building performance and physics while placing health, wellbeing and ecology at the heart of the Conference.


Keynote Speakers
  • Tom Cox – R & D Manager, Saint-Gobain
  • Professor Simon Robinson – Leeds Beckett University
  • Mike Ormesher – Technical Director Northern Europe, KNAUF
  • Professor Eric Rondeau –  The University of Lorraine, France
  • Professor Malcolm Bell – Leeds Beckett University
  • Professor Paul Chatterton – The University of Leeds
  • Professor Chris Gorse – Leeds Beckett University
  • Professor Alice Owen – The University of Leeds


Click here to book your place!

Your booking will include two days attendance at the conference as well as two evening dinners including attendance at Friday night’s Grand Finale, the inaugural RISE Awards (further information here)

Introducing our conference finale… 


Friday 18th September, Park Plaza Hotel, Leeds

Click here for more info

10th June 2015 – A Busy, Inspiring, Built Environment Day

This Wednesday, 10th June, is going to a busy built environment learning and sharing day: Check out these great events:

If you are in Leeds, Yorkshire or the North of England:

UK_collaborative_logoOur Living Building Challenge UK Collaboration Materials Workshop explores the materials petal, at Squire Patton Boggs, Leeds from 2.30 – 5

Introduction to the Materials Petal (LBC Presentation) Martin Brown
Materials Handbook Working Session
Experiences of tracking Red List Materials (Alex Whitcroft)

Contact LSI GreenVision e.a.schofield@leedsbeckett.ac.uk  for more information.



If you are on the internet


CGlkNIhUAAEei4eBrightest Greenest Buildings: The free-to-attend carbon neutral virtual exhibition dedicated to Europe’s most successful and greenest building projects and green building solutions opens on June 10th. We will have a presence – thats the UK Living Building Challenge UK, Fairsnape, #FutuREstorative and LSI Green Vision, along with many other great green building advocates and supporters.

There is an inspiring and free seminar Schedule of Events running through out the day, not to be missed!



If you are on twitter:

WORLD-FM-DAY-LOGO_2015_translations2-1World FM Day On June 10, @IFMA will host two Twitter chats that pose hot-topic questions addressing aspects of this year’s World FM Day theme, “Building Resilience for the Future,” using the hashtag #WorldFMDay.

8-9 a.m. CDT: Chat on resilience (risk mitigation, business continuity, agility/change management)
2-3 p.m. CDT: Chat on the future of FM (succession planning, tech/industry innovations, etc.) (There are also a myriad of other WorldFMDay events taking place on the 10th)

Brightest Greenest Buildings Europe 2015

Once again The UK Living Building Challenge Collaborative and Leeds Beckett University’s Green Vision & Leeds Sustainability Institute  will be exhibiting at this free to attend virtual exhibition dedicated to Europe’s most successful and greenest building projects and green building solutions. Brightest! Greenest! Buildings EUROPE 2015 is a virtual exhibition, organised by an international project team to promote the greenest building projects and associated solutions in Europe. With an extremely low carbon footprint,  this exhibition and conference will reach over 50 countries in the European market in a highly efficient & energy saving manner.

In a shift of direction from last year’s conference, then entitled ExpoC21, Brightest! Greenest! Buildings Europe 2015 will run over several months with an evolving focus and a diverse monthly Events Programme featuring topical presentations from international experts and advocates. The expo will officially launch on 10 June 2015 & it’s first set of presentations will include contributions from Delta Development Group, C.F. Møller, The Carbon Trust, MIPIM’s Innovation Forum and many more! This launch event will also see the soft lauch of Base EU Cities following it’s successful programme on smart cities it has implemented throughout the UK. The event itself will also feature a wide range of different exhibitors featuring investors, project developers, designers, green building consultants and rating tool assessors and other services as well as technologies, products, and materials providers. Last year over 1500 people attended across two days and this year the organizers expect to welcome 10000 people over several months. Speaking about last year’s exhibition, Green Vision chair Martin Brown says,

“Visiting the stands was actually easier and more enjoyable than a real show, being able to chat and pick up brochures, watch videos and read posters with ease. I had numerous business card exchanges and agreements to get in touch after the show to discuss possible collaboration on Living Building Challenge, sustainability, green schools and social media, including a future discussion to be had on possible funding. I would have considered it a very good day at any real life show.” Martin’s full review of last year’s show can be read here

Further information about the event, including the team behind it, the promotional plan as well as last year’s highlights can be found on the website. In the meantime here is a sneaky peak of our stand at the event, do register online at http://www.brightestgreenestbuildings.eu/, create your avatar & come and visit us on the 10th!



Healthy Buildings to Healthy Minds – joining the dots at Green Vision

Imagine buildings that foster net-positive health and happiness. Buildings that can actually make us healthier and feel better from working or living in them – sounds great doesn’t it? Well that was the theme of last month’s Green Vision “Health & Happiness” seminar where we welcomed around 20 industry professionals to Squire Patton Boggs in Leeds to explore some of the new thinking correlating building design with health.

First to speak was Green Vision chair, Martin Brown, who gave an overview of the Living Building Challenge (LBC) performance standard and the LBC UK collaborative who have been hosting workshops for over a year now outlining the requirements of the standard and the seven tranches (known as petals) by which a building can be assessed against. The Living Building Challenge is the built environment’s most rigorous performance standard & calls for the creation of building projects at all scales that operate as cleanly, beautifully and efficiently as nature’s architecture. There are 7 ‘petals’ within the standard; place, water, beauty, materials, energy, equity & health and happiness. Find out more about the Living Building Challenge UK collaborative here and contact us if you wish to get involved.

We also welcomed Victoria Lockhart , Wellbeing & Sustainability expert at Arup Associates who introduced the International Wellbuilding standard of which Arup is the first organisation outside of the USA to support.  The WELL Building Standard®, administered by the International WELL Building Institute™ is an evidenced based system for measuring, certifying and monitoring the performance of building features that impact health and wellbeing. The standard is third-party certified by Green Business Certification Inc. (GBCI), which administers the LEED certification program and the LEED professional credentialing program. As with the Living Building Challenge, the standard provides a structured framework against which projects can optimise their impacts on human health, with performance requirements defined across seven categories: air, water, nourishment, light, fitness, comfort, and mind.

WellBuildingimage sourced from Arup Associates here

Finally, in a slight change of tone for the seminar, but of no less importance, we welcomed Elliot Cohen, Lecturer at Leeds Beckett University to talk about mindfulness. There are many different descriptions of mindfulness out there but perhaps the best one comes from bemindful.co.uk who describe it as

“an integrative, mind–body-based approach that can help you manage your thoughts and feelings, and change the way you relate to experiences. The practise of Mindfulness helps/teaches us to pay attention to the present moment without judgement, using techniques like meditation, breathing, and yoga. Training helps us become more aware of our thoughts, feelings, and body sensations so that instead of being overwhelmed by them, we’re better able to manage them. Practising mindfulness can give more insight into emotions, boost attention and concentration, and improve relationships.”

Anyone can practice mindfulness as Elliot ably demonstrated with a series of short breathing exercises with the assembled. Why is mindfulness important to building design? Well, people are critical to good building design & studies have shown that mindfulness can be one of key drivers for fostering behavioural change & collaboration in teams. Not to mention the obvious health benefits of helping us to destress,  regain focus, be more effective and look at challenges more objectively – who wouldn’t want that?

Check out our short storify of the event below. Anyone who is interested in viewing the slides for this event, please send an email to ckeevents@leedsbeckett.ac.uk and we will send you the link.


Leeds Sustainability Institute (LSI) welcomes the Paris Institute of Technology


A group of Executive Masters students from the Ecole Nationale des Ponts et Chausees, the Paris Institute of Technology, were engaged in a four day study visit from 27th to 30th April at Leeds Beckett University. The purpose of the visit was to learn about the research and work of the CeBE team working within the Leeds Sustainability Institute and also explore some of the local area.

The Dean of the Arts, Environment & Technology faculty, where the Institute sits, Professor Mohammad Dastbaz gave a welcoming address to the students who then embarked on a packed schedule of presentations, visits and activities. The students were treated to presentations on LSI research into building behaviour, thermal bridging, and closing the performance gap. In addition, Mark Warner, Sustainability Manager at Leeds Beckett University, gave an insight into the environmental improvements in the university estates and Anthony Smith presented his research on solving civil engineering problems using biomicrobial solutions.


The group were also treated to some activities outside of the classroom,visiting the Little Kelham development in Sheffield and the Energy House at Salford University.


Dr Lindsay Smales also took the group on a walking tour of Leeds & the heritage town of Saltaire.


The LSI has a long standing relationship with the Paris Institute of Technology  which continues to be highly productive & collaborative, fostering a robust exchange of ideas, knowledge & best practice on sustainable research, practices and technology.




DEng – Study for a Doctorate of Engineering while you work

LSI 2015

The Doctorate of Engineering (DEng) is a programme of research based on the advanced study of engineering or applied sciences and professional practice in engineering, It is intended for candidates with relevant professional experience and supported by structured learning. The aim of the course is to blend the practical experience within the working environment with a part-time research degree. The key themes of the DEng are Energy, Sustainability and Building Performance.

Current Student Profiles

Stephen Wise, Technical Development Manager, Knauf Insulation.

Stephen has worked for the business for 13 years and held his current post for 6 years. His responsibilities include managing the Knauf’s research portfolio in the UK and working on CEN and British Standards Committees on subjects including product standards and in-situ testing. He also has been heavily involved in the government’s industry engagement process for the last 4 revisions of Part L. He was the chair of the Construction Products Association Technical Committee for several years standing down in 2014 and is currently chair of The Thermal Insulation Manufacturers and Suppliers Association. He has worked closely with Leeds Beckett University since 2009 notably on the development of solutions to Party Wall Bypass. Since starting his D.Eng he doesn’t have any spare time but if he did he would probably spend it working on the refurbishment of a 150 year old house in the Pennines and for pleasure he likes to walk in the hills.

Mark Burrows, BSc(Hons) MSc CEnv CEng CMVP FEI FLSI, Energy Solutions Specialist, Siemans Industry UK & I

Mark is currently undertaking a D.Eng research degree in the field of industrial energy data analytics. His research centres on analysing and understanding the barriers to the uptake of energy data analytics, as a tool for energy reduction within industrial manufacturing businesses within the UK. Day to day, Mark is an energy management specialist with varied experience in the management and delivery of energy, carbon and wider sustainability services to both public, but mainly, large-scale industrial energy users. He leads on the conception, delivery and review of energy management services for Siemens. This includes the design, management and verification of energy performance contracts. Mark is a Fellow of the Energy Institute, Fellow of the Leeds Sustainability Institute, a Chartered Engineer, Chartered Environmentalist and Certified Measurement and Verification Professional.


Expected Duration

4 years minimum

How to Apply

Interested parties should email Anne Stafford a.stafford@leedsbeckett.ac.uk in the first instance

Ant & Tech – LSI Biomimicry expert featured in Sunday People

Following on from Green Vision’s excellent learning from nature twilight seminar in February, we are pleased to see that Leeds Sustainability Institute’s  Rich MacCowan , one of our speakers for that event, has recently been featured in the Sunday people talking about Biomimicry and the principles behind it. As well as being the LSI lead for Biomimicry, Biophilia and Systems-thinking Richard formed the team behind Biomimicry UK in 2012 to take the research on nature-based design and finding a place for it in industry. The full article has been reproduced below;

The way busy worker ants defend their nests is being studied by scientists – to help busy human workers defend their emails.

In our hectic world of 24-hour living and instant information, it would be easy to think nature has nothing left to teach us. But top scientists know we still have plenty to learn from animals and plants. An exciting branch of science called Biomimicry uses nature to answer problems of modern life.

Ants, for example, are experts at keeping predators at bay because they are organised and share their workload across the colony. It is a principle that may work against unwanted email junk messages, which make up about 90% of emails and spread viruses. Ant colonies work like the human immune system, in which each cell is designed to fight off one or two different bugs, rather than being weighed down with every tool needed to battle all infections.

Biologist Deborah Gordon, at Stanford University in California, said: “Ants often make mistakes, and yet over evolutionary time it works out well enough that a colony can keep out all the bad guys. Because the chances are, when any particular ant of another colony comes along there will be an ant that recognises it.”

She said the same logic could be applied online. Emails are currently screened against blocklists, which stop messages from known spammers getting through. But the culprits are often skilled at staying one step ahead, and Dr Gordon says a smarter, more flexible system could be developed by studying ants. She said: “Spam filtering has evolved into a war with hackers. Once they figure out how the spam is being identified it is pretty easy to change things around so as not to be identified. What we are suggesting is a system where each part just reacts to the particular spam that it encounters.”

Ants are so amazing that even in zero gravity, when 600 were sent to the International Space Station, they stuck to their tasks and stayed organised as a colony. Teams of robots using such tactics could revolutionise search projects in dangerous environments, added Dr Gordon.

And it’s not just ants. Biomimicry has already changed all our lives and will continue to do so. The skin of sharks has inspired swimming costumes which cut drag and helped top performers such as Michael Phelps to smash records. And the shock-absorbing skull of the woodpecker, which drills trees up to 12,000 times a day with its beak, led a designer to create a super strong cardboard cycle helmet. A beetle’s ability to trap moisture from the air spurred scientists to try and grow trees in a desert. Meanwhile a fish is helping improve natural light in offices, pine cones have inspired a revolutionary clothes material and burdock plants’ hooks led to the development of Velcro. Birds’ hollow bones may improve jet plane design, while the reflective quality of butterfly wings are lengthening the life of batteries in electronic books.

Richard MacCowan, director and co-founder of Biomimicry UK, said: “It’s not just about sustainability. “It’s about what you can achieve that’s more beneficial, better for the environment, has better social impact. I t’s about tangible results, that’s why we’re starting to see improvement.”



Ever wondered how the built environment can contribute to our health & happiness?

Imagine buildings that foster net-positive health and happiness. Buildings that can actually make us healthier and feel better from working or living in them. This evening seminar, aligned with our Living Building Challenge afternoon session, will focus on the emerging importance of health and happiness within the built environment.

We are seeing built environment sustainability mature, at design, construction and facilities management stages, moving away from an approach that focuses solely on technology, energy and water performance to embrace health, happiness and even mindfulness.

This not to be missed event will feature the following speakers:

Introduction to Net Positive Health and Happiness Thinking 

Martin Brown, Chair Green Vision and LBC UK, fairsnape

Mindfulness – Training in Tranquility and Cultivating Creativity  

Dr Elliot Cohen, Senior Lecturer in Psychology,

Leeds Beckett University

An introduction to the Well Building Standard 

Victoria Lockhart, Arup Associates, Wellbeing and Sustainability Specialist, LEED AP ID+C, BREEAM AP, WELL AP

Wednesday 13th May 2015

17:30 to 19:30

Squire Patton Boggs (UK) LLP, 2 Park Lane, Leeds



Earth Day 2015 – Beyond Sustainability


Martin Brown is the Leeds Beckett Green Vision Ambassador, a Living Building Challenge Ambassador and through Fairsnape an innovative, leading consultant and advocate for built environment sustainability.

We are seeing the emergence of new sustainability thinking, one that is challenging our understanding of sustainability, one that uses expressions such as net positive, regenerative and restorative sustainability.

Patagonia company founder Yvonne Chounaird thinks we should not even use the term sustainability until we give the same or more back to nature than we take. 

At this free public EarthDay presentation Martin will provide an overview of EarthDay, from its origins back in the 70’s to its present day global celebration of the Earth, along with a backdrop for a new sustainability, focusing on how buildings and the built environment can deliver a restorative sustainability, starting to heal the future and to correct some of the sector’s past environmental damage.

We are limited to 70 places on this event so secure you place now at this FREE event by email to ckeevents@leedsbeckett.ac.uk


Older posts