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Academic vision: Experiments, Arts, Society, Technology

Under the umbrella of the new Future Living Institute, our two buildings will be home to ground-breaking research, technology and innovation – underpinned by around 60 degree programmes across eight UCL faculties. Integrating research and education, theory and practice, UCL East is connecting Experiments, Arts, Society and Technology (EAST), creating new skills and practices and breaking down barriers between disciplines and communities.

Our 11 academic entities are breaking down traditional barriers between teaching and research. Based across Pool Street West and Marshgate, they will embody UCL’s commitment to discover, co-create and share knowledge to solve the biggest global challenges facing future living.

They will work across areas as diverse as manufacturing, advanced propulsion, robotics, artificial intelligence, mobility, disability, planetary sustainability, wellbeing, urbanisation, finance, business, art and culture.

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Advanced Propulsion Lab

The APL will be a global centre of excellence dedicated to supporting global reductions in the environmental impacts of transport

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Culture Lab

The Culture Lab draws together research, learning, public engagement and enterprise to generate new skills and practices related to social sciences, humanities and the arts

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Experiential Learning and Research Hub

East London has long been an industrial heartland and in our new campus we will break new ground with the Experiential Learning and Research Hub

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Global Business School for Health

The GBSH will equip leading professionals with the necessary skills to meet the challenges faced by healthcare systems today

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Global Disability Innovation Hub

At the GDI Hub, we want to change the way we think about disability through co-design, collaboration, and innovation at the global level

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Institute of Finance and Technology

Believing that finance should be placed at the service of society, the IFT will shift the way we think about, lead, and deliver 21st century finance

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Institute of Making

The IoM will be a multidisciplinary research club for those who want to understand the world through exploration, collaboration, making and remaking

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Manufacturing Futures Lab

The MFL will support new research focused on knowledge-based manufacturing to deliver the sustainable products and processes of the future

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Nature-Smart Centre

The centre will focus on better understanding our dependencies on natural systems and how we can operate within safe and sustainable ecological limits

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Robotics and Autonomous Systems

In any likely future, robots and autonomous systems will play a key role. UCL will be at the forefront of innovation in this area

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Urban and Built Environment Co-Labs

The Co-Labs will be building collaborations, research and pedagogies to enhance understanding of the built environment

Overarching vision

The shared vision for the campus is that:

  • We will connect Experiments, Arts, Society and Technology (EAST), integrating research and education, theory and practice – with cross-disciplinarity, innovation and public engagement.
  • We are reinventing the concept of a university – creating new skills and practices and breaking down barriers between disciplines so our students can tackle problems from different perspectives, both local and global.
  • We will co-create solutions to the biggest global challenges facing future living. We will work across areas as diverse as manufacturing, advanced propulsion, robotics, artificial intelligence, mobility, disability, planetary sustainability, wellbeing, urbanisation, finance, business, art and culture.
  • Uniting theory and practice, our facilities will support the breadth of experiential learning and innovation. From design and media studios to fabrication workshops and object-based learning spaces, we will foster collaboration and promote learning by doing. Our wet and dry labs will give students and academics the latest tools to conduct experiments, whether chemical and archaeological, or mechanical and computational. We will even have our very own experimental microbrewery.
  • Our smart, connected campus will deliver health and wellbeing benefits to people and planet, integrating technology and building infrastructure with data monitoring and the Internet of Things – indoors and out.
  • We will welcome the public, government and industry with open and accessible buildings, as well as taking our research, education and innovation out of our campus and into local communities and society.
  • Performances, exhibitions, workshops and lectures will contribute to a lively, participatory learning atmosphere, while our cafés, cinema and landscaped surroundings will help make UCL East a destination in its own right.
Pool Street West

It will comprise: 

  • A centre for Robotics & Autonomous Systems, part of a wider set of Experimental Engineering Labs covering a wide range of unique and innovative fields of study. The Centre will develop new robots looking at how they can be designed for their environments - in buildings, in the air, and in water - as well as how future urban environments might be designed for robots.
  • The Global Disability Innovation Hub, London's new global research centre, will move from its current home at Here East to Pool Street West. It brings together the top minds in disability, design and innovation. Through collaboration and partnership, academics, innovators, corporates and the local community will explore disability from a new perspective to improve the lives of disabled people worldwide. 
  • The Culture Lab will offer teaching, research and engagement spaces, underpinned by new programmes in making, media, conservation and heritage, and public history. Facilities at Pool Street West will include a new foundation studio for the Slade School, and a London Memory Workshop supporting the study of UCL's east London collections as well as oral histories of the area.
  • The Nature-Smart Centre will be a research and teaching centre, using the Park as a 'living lab' to focus on three key themes: enhancing biodiversity of cities; understanding the interplay between ecological and human health; and using citizen science to engage people with the natural environment.
  • The Urban Room will be a major public and community space, hosted by academics from across UCL, for debating the past, present and future of London. It will work closely with the London Memory Workshop and will provide opportunities for the application of knowledge towards the improvement of city dwellers worldwide.
    Marshgate

    Academic activities to be accommodated in Marshgate include:

    • The Culture Lab, which will offer teaching, research and engagement spaces, underpinned by new educational programmes in making, media, conservation & heritage, and public history. Activities and facilities at Marshgate will include a media lab, an object-based learning laboratory, and a suite of conservation facilities.
    • The Experiential Learning and Research Hub will support new and existing engineering programmes, and research new ways to educate and train engineers of the future.
    • The Advanced Propulsion Lab will be a global centre of excellence dedicated to the decarbonisation of the transport sector.
    • The Manufacturing Futures Lab will support new research focused on knowledge-based manufacturing to deliver the sustainable products and processes of the future. 
    • The Institute of Making is a multidisciplinary research club for those interested in the made world: from makers of molecules to makers of buildings, synthetic skin to spacecraft, soup to diamonds, socks to cities.
    • Urban and Built Environment Co-Labs will catalyse innovation through research, education, enterprise and public engagement bridging architecture, design, economics, engineering, project management and urbanism. Collaborations with partners, taking advantage of emerging technologies, design-based and participatory methods, drive positive change in the built environment sector through transdisciplinary ethical practice focused on global challenges.
    • The Institute of Finance and Technology will provide leadership and training for future financial and business leaders, enabling close collaboration between research, financial innovation, industry, and government. It has been founded on the belief that finance should be placed at the service of society. Professionals of the present and future will be able to experiment, exchange ideas and develop the skills and mindset to succeed in a fast-paced world. 
    • The Global Business School for Health will equip leading professionals with the necessary skills to meet the challenges faced by healthcare systems today.

     

    Academic themes

    The faculties involved in Phase 1 have worked together to identify four themes, which bring together and integrate the various academic activities: 

    • Making: We're focusing on "learning by doing": hands-on teaching and research around making, imaging and manufacturing. We'll have flexible project spaces, workshops and specialised teaching laboratories.
    • Originating: We'll be a hub for innovation activities, focusing on the intersection between humans, their social interactions and technology - ranging from robotics and cultural technology to future manufacturing and global cities. We're creating new courses for students in these areas and establishing new incubation facilities for start-ups.
    • Connecting: We're reinventing the way UCL connects with the public, creating shared academic and public spaces which are inviting and approachable. We're providing access to learning and to research findings through indoor and outdoor spaces for festivals, performances, collections and exhibitions.
    • Living: We're integrating the Olympic Park into the learning experience as a 'living laboratory', engaging people with their natural environment, and creating the space to debate the past, present and future of London. We'll have residences for students, promoting a new approach to holistic university life.