The aim of this flagship project is to develop a methodology for understanding and guiding change in tertiary and vocational programs that educate built environment professionals, while aligning these changes with professional development for academics and industry practitioners for designing and building low carbon cities. The project meets the aims of the 10YFP by building on an underlying foundation of sustainable consumption and production

Implemented in

  • Asia / Pacific
  • Latin America / Caribbean

Led by

Partners

  • ProSPER.Net, University of Peradeniya (Sri Lanka),
  • NIASA (National Institute of Advanced Studies in Architecture (India
  • Asian Institute of Technology (Bangkok),

Sustainability themes
Climate Change, Agriculture and fishery

Sectors of activity
Buildings and construction, Energy, Environmental Services, Agricultural and Fishery

Type of initiative
Capacity Building & Implementation, Education & Awareness Raising, Research, Analysis, Assessment

Type of lead actor
Scientific and Technical

Budget
5000000 US$

Start date
22/03/2017

Objectives

A recent World Bank (2012) report, Inclusive green growth: the pathway to sustainable development argues strongly for coupling economic growth and sustainability objectives. It states that greening growth is ‘necessary, efficient and affordable’. The context for this pursuit of sustainable development is continuing rapid urbanisation and city building globally. A key requirement in this context is a workforce with appropriate skills.
[G]reen innovation like innovation in general, depends on people who are able to generate and apply knowledge in the workplace and society at large. Required innovation skills include basic skills (reading, writing) technical skills (science, engineering), generic skills (problem solving, multicultural openness, leadership), managerial and entrepreneurial skills, creativity and design skills. The green economy requires greater emphasis on design and multidisciplinary team work, strategic leadership and adaptability, and knowledge of the sciences (ibid 75).
However, there is a skills deficit problem because education and training systems are not producing graduates with the right skills.
Many of the skill shortages already reported in connection with green growth strategies appear to result from generic failings in education and training. And they reflect long-standing issues such as the lack of functioning universities and research centers, the mismatch between students’ choices of discipline and the needed skills, the lack of incentives for employers to invest in developing the transferable skills of their workforces, the lack of access for the disadvantaged to time and finance for training, and the stickiness of relative pay rates (ibid 100).
This skills deficit also applies to built environment professionals that lead continuing rapid urbanisation and city building. Their output is measured largely by building and construction activity levels. Little attention is paid to the accompanying use of resources and impact on climate change. To maximize building related impacts of climate change and associated greenhouse emission levels, some professional development opportunities exist, but they are fragmented. There is untapped opportunity to use professional development as a strategic opportunity at both undergraduate/postgraduate levels in universities and in the built environment professions to maximize understanding of the impacts of the built environment.
The principal objective of this project is to institutionalize

Activities

This flagship project contributes to work streams as follows:
Work stream 1: Establish and promote enabling frameworks to implement SBC policies
- Foster and share research, tools, financial and other approaches related to SBC
- Maintain and engage in global dialogue to develop and promote common language and tools related to SBC
- Foster enabling frameworks for SBC
Work stream 2: Support and promote sustainable housing
- Piloting sustainable housing approaches in the affordable and social housing markets
- Support synergies with relevant programmes
Work stream 3: Enhance sustainability in the building supply chain
- Identify and share core analytical tools, conceptual work and improved knowledge base for supporting decision making towards resource efficiency in building supply chain
- Promote policies to integrate resource efficiency in the building supply chain
- Engage upstream stakeholders and supply chains towards resource efficiency
Work stream 4: Reduce climate impact and strengthen climate resilience of the building and construction sector
- Identify and share core analytical tools, conceptual work and improved knowledge base for supporting decision making towards a more climate resilient and low emission building and construction sector
- Promote resilient and low emission SBC planning and piloting
Cross cutting theme: Knowledge sharing, outreach and awareness raising
- Promote awareness raising efforts and promote understanding of sustainable buildings and construction across the stakeholders and general public,
- Support organization of international conferences and platforms for disseminating activities and results
- Support building of peer groups based on region specific conditions to share lessons and experiences with building codes, solutions, geographically bound infrastructure
- Promote interdisciplinary exchanges between institutions of higher education for architecture, urban planning, engineering etc. informing the development and application of SBC policies and foster integration of sustainability consideration in relevant curricula supported by concrete case studies

The main work streams are aligned to the SBC programme workstream activities, flagship project activities with subsequent indicators, shown in the table below.

Impact and Results

Project beneficiaries are primarily students (current and future professionals in the built environment industry), academics and industry. Students benefit because they are not subjected to the same pedagogies of teaching and learning that has set us on our current unsustainable path.
Academics benefit because they are able to get support for their teaching from industry and the flagship programme. Academics’ knowledge and resource base improve as they are subjected to professional development opportunities themselves. They also get the opportunity to work with industry, learning from the industry and supporting professional development of industry.
Industry benefits because they get value add for their time through sharing knowledge and expertise that they would not otherwise get. They are in a position to shape young professionals that have foundational knowledge on the theoretical frameworks of sustainability and even practical or best practice examples of upto date knowledge. Industry do not need to retrain students to meet the needs of the work force.