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Building our Future event success

Earlier this month, Professor Richard Bull, Deputy Dean of the School of Architecture, Design, and the Built Environment was pleased to host the Building Our Future forum event at our Mansfield University Hub.

Lecture theatre with visitors seated and watching panel of speakers

The event explored the issues and challenges surrounding the sector in accomplishing net-zero targets in the construction sector by 2050. An absence of skills, knowledge and expertise threaten to derail plans to retrofit the current building stock and achieve our carbon reduction ambitions. The opportunity of low carbon skills to level up is crucial given the socio-economic challenges facing Nottinghamshire. Given this context, how can we build a better future?

The opening keynote was provided by Mayor Andy Abrahams of Mansfield District Council who highlighted the importance of this agenda for Mansfield and North Nottinghamshire. Then we welcomed presentations of innovative examples of retrofit across the region before we discussed how the relevant stakeholders: policy makers, education providers and business can work together to collectively address the local skills gap through low carbon construction and retrofit.

Speakers and organisations included:

  • Andy Abrahams, Elected Mayor of Mansfield
  • Jason Readfearn from Focus Consultants
  • Paul Charlton, MDC Design Services
  • Angie Lillistone, Head of Carbon Reduction Projects and Policy at Nottingham City Council
  • Professor Lucelia Rodrigues, Chair in Sustainable and Resilient Cities at the University of Nottingham
  • Jorge Santana, Low Carbon Energy Project Manager at Midlands Net Zero Hub
  • Sandra Stevens from Construction Industry Training Board (CITB)
  • David Walker, Principal Lecturer at Nottingham Trent University
  • Phil Clark, Vision West Nottinghamshire College

Nottingham Trent University’s School of Architecture, Design and Built Environment, in partnership with Vision West Notts College, has pioneered a response to this. We are committed to investing in sector-leading courses, research and knowledge exchange in Mansfield to address both the low carbon agenda and the skills gap in Nottinghamshire. In addition, the School of Architecture, Design and the Built Environment announced £1.5m funding to create a new Centre of Excellence for Net Zero Carbon Construction and Retrofit, which will focus on research, skills, and consultancy in this area and launch later this year. Sign up for further updates about the Centre.

“I was so thrilled with the turnout and quality of engagement for this event. Mansfield is my hometown so I’m really excited to see Mansfield being at the forefront of this debate and ensuring that we seize the employment opportunities that the transition to net zero will bring” Professor Richard Bull, Deputy Dean.

This event was organised in collaboration with NTU Institute for Knowledge Exchange Practice and Vision West Notts College, the event was sponsored by the Arc Partnership.

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