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Diary Notice - UCL and University of East London (UEL) team up to launch “Building Sustainable Communities” programme

Publication date: Oct 20, 2006 2:07:09 PM

Researchers from UCL and UEL are joining forces with a host of other organisations to launch Building Sustainable Communities, a new venture aimed at delivering sustainable urban development, at a one-day conference in central London on 21st November.

Event: “Building Sustainable Communities” conference

Date: Tuesday 21 November 2006, 10am to 5pm

Location: Royal Institute of British Architects, 66 Portland Place, London, W1B 1AD

The two-year programme, funded by the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE), will create a network of professionals, practitioners and academics who will work together on projects to bring evidence-based, participative processes and new knowledge to bear on the delivery of sustainable communities.

In addition to academics from UCL and UEL, speaking at the programme launch will be representatives from Urban Splash, Land Securities plc, Igloo Regeneration Partnership, Tesco, Wates Group and East Thames.

High-profile figures from HEFCE, CABE (Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment) and CIRIA (Construction Industry Research and Information Association) will also give presentations, and Nick Raynsford MP (formerly Minister of State for Housing and Planning at the DETR) will give a keynote address.

Programme Director David Cobb, UCL Business PLC, said: “The launch event is designed to offer representative, but high-profile, organisations already active in the community a chance to share with delegates their aspirations for its future development and the challenges, as they see it, facing this programme.” A large audience of architects, project developers, house builders, investors, housing associations, academics, constructors, planners, local authorities and communities is expected to attend.

Lead academic on the programme, Professor Alan Penn, UCL Bartlett School of Architecture, said: “For a given population dense cities are better for the environment than sparser settlement patterns, however density needs to be well designed if we are to make the most of it for those who live there. Learning from history about how to do these things well – how to generate the ‘urban buzz’ of a thriving culture and economy – is one thing, but applying that knowledge to create truly sustainable communities of the future is another. That is what we are aiming to do here.”

Notes for Editors

1. For more information on the programme please contact UCL Media Relations on: +44 (0)20 7679 9726.

2. This event is invitation only but media representatives are welcome. Please call Tim Benzie on: +44 (0)870 730 8686 to arrange a press pass.

About the partnership

The ‘Building Sustainable Communities’ partnership consists of UCL, contributing research expertise in a range of the key disciplines; UEL, with its extensive regional networks in the Thames Gateway and Olympic development area; and a cohort of other academic institutions with complementary expertise including KnowledgeEast partners and others from around the UK and internationally. The partnership has engaged a group of over 70 stakeholder/user organisations spanning the full range of the urban lifecycle from finance to management in use, including designers, implementers, regulators and umbrella groups.

About UEL

The University of East London (UEL) is a global learning community, with 20,000 students from over 120 countries world-wide. Our vision is to achieve recognition, both nationally and internationally, as a successful and inclusive regional university proud of our diversity, committed to new modes of learning which focus on students and enhance their employability, and renowned for our contribution to social, cultural and economic development, especially through our research and scholarship. We have a strong track-record in widening participation and working with industry.

About UCL

Founded in 1826, UCL was the first English university established after Oxford and Cambridge, the first to admit students regardless of race, class, religion or gender, and the first to provide systematic teaching of law, architecture and medicine. In the government’s most recent Research Assessment Exercise, 59 UCL departments achieved top ratings of 5* and 5, indicating research quality of international excellence. UCL is the fourth-ranked UK university in the 2005 league table of the top 500 world universities produced by the Shanghai Jiao Tong University. UCL alumni include Mahatma Gandhi (Laws 1889, Indian political and spiritual leader); Jonathan Dimbleby (Philosophy 1969, writer and television presenter); Junichiro Koizumi(Economics 1969, Prime Minister of Japan); Lord Woolf (Laws 1954 – former Lord Chief Justice of England & Wales); Alexander Graham Bell (Phonetics 1860s – inventor of the telephone); and members of the band Coldplay.