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MArch II students explore solutions to the effects of climate change on the Isles of Scilly

10 December 2019

MArch II students in discussion about climate change solutions

Student’s from MArch II unit 1.5° visited the Isles of Scilly in October to explore the effects of sea level rise on the community in Hugh Town.

Following a site visit, the students have been working on a Primer Project, exploring closed-loop, systems-based solutions to everyday issues they identified to be affecting the island’s residents.

The students initially worked as a group to explore and understand life on the islands; identifying many of the issues faced by the community as a result of their isolation, seasonal economy and vulnerability to the effects of climate change. By exploring the island’s eco systems, infrastructure and industries, they were able to identify underutilised resources and waste streams that could be reimagined with a new function and value to address island needs. By learning from nature and understanding the principles of biomimicry, the students were able to propose solutions that ensured the maximum value of the resources was retained in regenerative loops, without any leaks or wastage.

‘The purpose of this brief was to encourage the students to challenge the conventional, and often wasteful, linear solutions humans create and to learn from natural eco systems, where the concept of waste doesn’t exist. A key reference text for our Primer Project was Michael Pawlyn’s ‘Biomicry in Architecture’ so we were delighted to have Michael in to review our students work at their end of term reviews this week. We're really looking forward to seeing how our students carry forward this systems thinking approach to their architectural Thesis projects next term.’ Matt and Elly, Arbor Architects

The unit is part of Cardiff University’s Architectural Studies programme (MArch), a two-year programme that takes graduates to an advanced level of architectural design and provides a fully accredited route to becoming a professional architect in the UK. To find out more about the Master of Architecture (MArch) please visit the Cardiff University website

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