In her key note speech, Dr Alice Moncaster set out the purposes of the day as: to identify the current state of the art in both research and practice; to identify key areas for new research; to encourage active knowledge sharing between academia and industry; and to develop future academia-industry collaborations.
Dr Moncaster, Catherine De Wolf, and Dr Francesco Pomponi led with presentations on some of the current cutting edge research within the CUBES group at Cambridge. This was followed by three speakers invited to describe the drivers and challenges to embodied carbon industry practice; Eleni Soulti explained the current approach of the BRE, Natalia Ford described the support offered by the UKGBC, and Dr Craig Jones updated participants on the Bath Inventory of Carbon and Energy (ICE) database.
The second half of the symposium saw all participants engage in detailed focus groups on six key areas, each facilitated by a member of the CUBES team. Concerted engagement by all participants revealed some important shared concerns, and each group worked collaboratively using their collective knowledge and expertise to develop innovative approaches to the challenges ahead.
Professor Jacqueline Glass from the University of Loughborough closed the symposium with an extremely impressive insight into what we had achieved together over the course of a few hours, and a call to arms. The day ended with a wonderful dinner in the elegant surroundings of Newnham College.
Our sincerest thanks to all who shared so willingly and cooperatively their experiences and ideas: to our additional focus group facilitators, Hannah Baker, Tim Forman, Chris Seeley and Katie Symons; to our excellent photographer Roberta Mutschler; to Jacqui, and all our speakers; and to the wonderful conference and catering staff at Newnham. Thanks also to the Newnham Senior Members Research Fund, who provided full funding to Dr Moncaster to run this event.
We hope that all our guests went away, not just with new contacts and pleasant memories, but also with renewed intention to work together for rapid and effective change towards a truly sustainable built environment.