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06 March 2009
University experts in the fields of low waste and low carbon economies, and sustainable architecture, have travelled the US showcasing the advances being made in these fields in Wales, as part of Wales Week 2009.
With sustainability being this year’s theme and the University at the forefront of research in environmental and sustainable research, Professors Hywel Thomas and Phillip Jones were invited by the Welsh Assembly Government to be keynote speakers during the Week.
The annual event is designed to promote Wales in the US and takes place across the US in New York, Boston, Los Angeles and San Francisco.
‘Green Jobs’ was the theme of Professor Thomas, head of the School of Engineering’s talk at Green 15, at the Rubin Museum of Art in New York, drawing on a recent UN report that tens of millions of Green Jobs could be created by a move to Low-Carbon and Low-Waste economies around the world.
He highlighted the contributions the University is making to the green agenda through projects such as smart electricity grids. He also focussed on Geoenvironmental problems, highlighting the work and successes of the multi-million pound Geoenvironmental Research Park (GRP), which is facilitating research development, technology transfer and economic growth, and touched on the Nuclear Engineering agenda and the unresolved issue of radio active waste disposal.
Head of the Welsh School of Architecture, Professor Phil Jones, followed with a presentation on ‘Building for a Sustainable Future’, during which he described the applications of the School’s world-leading research in the area of sustainable architecture and zero-carbon buildings. During the week, Professor Jones also joined a panel discussion led by the British Consul General Sir Alan Collins at a breakfast meeting – ‘Sustainable Architecture and Environmental Issues’ at the British Consul General’s Residence in New York.
Massachusetts State Senator, Anthony David Galluccio also made a surprise appearance and spoke about his own Welsh heritage, links to the Welsh community and fondness for the country.
This latest trip is part of a wider strategy to increase the University's links with the US and to achieve greater prominence with US public, influencers and institutions. Accompanying the Professors to the US was Strategic Development Director Louise Casella and Director of the Alumni and Development Division, John Robertson, who attended a number of events including the special St David’s Day celebrations in Boston.
During another high-profile visit to the US in 2008, Cardiff signed its first formal agreement with US Ivy League University, the University of Pennsylvania.
The University is also set to feature at the 2009 Smithsonian Folklife Festival, an annual international exposition of living cultural heritage, over the weeks straddling the 4th July holiday.
Produced outdoors on the National Mall of the United States in Washington, D.C., by the Smithsonian Institution's Centre for Folklife and Cultural Heritage, a range of schools will be taking part including the School of Welsh and the Welsh School of Architecture.
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