New Directorship Team to lead the Centre for Technologies for Sustainable Built Environments (TSBE)

After three years Professor Janet Barlow has stepped down from the directorship of the Centre for Technologies for Sustainable Built Environments (TSBE) at the University of Reading. A new management team has been appointed:

  • Professor Li Shao (below left) is the designated TSBE Centre Director with direct responsibility for the Engineering Doctorate Programme.
  • Professor John Connaughton (below centre) takes responsibility for leveraging TSBE's strong industry links to ensure the full potential for follow-on research funding is fully exploited.
  • Professor Tim Dixon (below right) takes responsibility for external promotion and interdisciplinary capacity building.

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The TSBE Centre is an Industrial Doctorate (EngD) Training Centre funded by the UK Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC). There are currently 33 doctoral researchers who are co-funded by an industry partner to address a real-world research problem in the area of sustainability as it relates to the built environment. Nine have already graduated with the much sought after EngD qualification.

The TSBE Centre draws much of its supervisory expertise from the School of Construction Management and Engineering (SCME) within which it is based. In the most recent 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF) assessment, 83% of the School's research was rated as world-leading (4*) or internationally excellent (3*), with the School ranked 6th in the UK in research power, and 3rd in the UK in terms of research impact. The TSBE Centre builds on the proud tradition of the broader School in world-leading research and training focused on solving real-world problems.

The recent change in leadership will be taking the TSBE Centre to the next stage of its evolution. There are some exciting developments at the University of Reading which will provide the TSBE Centre with new opportunities. These include:

The foundation of a new School of Architecture in 2015, with the appointment of Professor Lorraine Farrelly.

The establishment of a new HEFCE-funded Institute of Environmental Analytics at the University of Reading in partnership with the University of Oxford and the University of Surrey. The Institute provides a strong focus on big data and smart and sustainable cities.

The closer integration of the University's SustBE (Sustainability in the Built Environment) network with the activities of the TSBE Centre, particularly through the hosting of joint events and the development of inter-disciplinary research proposals.

Professor Li Shao (Director of the TSBE Centre) said: "The TSBE Centre is committed to a vision of research-based innovation. We believe that the complex and evolving problems of sustainability require interdisciplinary solutions, and close collaboration with industry is vital if our research is to have an impact on practice. But it is also important to emphasise that we see industry as an equal partner in the co-production of new knowledge."

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