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University expertise helping us build for a greener future – University of Reading

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University expertise helping us build for a greener future

Release Date 28 February 2013

The University of Reading's cutting-edge research and teaching expertise in sustainable design, construction and the built environment will be showcased at the sector's biggest event next month.

Running 5-7 March at the London Excel, Ecobuild brings together 1,500 exhibitors and last year attracted over 57,000 visitors from all over the world. 

During Ecobuild, visitors can see what's on the menu at Reading's Research Café.  Visitors will be invited to choose demonstrations from a selection of research examples and interactive displays that showcase a diverse range of research outputs, including a wind turbine, a Microsoft energy monitor and bat-friendly roofing material.

Over the three days University of Reading experts will also be presenting and chairing sessions on The Business Case for BIM: Economic and Environmental Drivers, the Role of Commercial Property Retrofitting in Low Carbon Urban Transitions and Sustainable urban form - compact city or garden suburb?

The University is bringing together a network of its academics, SustBe, to tackle some of the major issues the world faces relating to sustainability in the built environment. Led by Professor Tim Dixon from the School of Construction Management and Engineering, the network incorporates academics working across a range of themes from including energy systems, city planning and ‘green' behaviour.

Professor Dixon said: "Ecobuild is a great opportunity for us in a number of ways.  By taking our research out to the sector we can demonstrate the myriad of ways our research is having impact, both directly through new materials and technologies, and indirectly through influencing policy and legislation." 

The University of Reading prides itself on producing highly skilled graduates. The first cohort from the University's Technologies for Sustainable Built Environment (TSBE) Industrial Doctorate Centre will graduate this year. This next generation of researchers and engineers will be the face of the University during the event, with current PhD and EngD students from TSBE running the stand.

Professor Dixon added: "Ecobuild also provides a fantastic opportunity for our students, to communicate their research to the wider industry, whilst the seminar and conference programmes enable them to engage with the broader debates surrounding sustainability."

While Reading remains at the forefront of research it prides itself on its commitment to low carbon campuses. The University, one of the world's top 1% of universities, has won a host of ‘green' awards. This week Reading has been ranked in the top 20 green universities in the UK in the Environment Agency's carbon management rankings.

Ecobuild will see high profile speakers such as Rt. Hon. Edward Davey MP (Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change), Jonathan Dimbleby and Joanna Lumley providing a multitude of perspectives on the topic. 

Reading's Professor of Sustainable Construction John Connaughton sits on the Ecobuild Advisory Board and recognises the importance of including academic institutions in events such as Ecobuild.

He said "Ecobuild has been the premier event for sustainability in the built environment for some time, and goes from strength to strength each year.  The presence of universities such as Reading helps ensure that the Ecobuild conference and seminar programme is relevant and cutting-edge."

Reading is one of only six university exhibiting at Ecobuild, stand number S453.


For all media enquiries please contact James Barr, University of Reading Press Officer on 0118 378 7115 or by email on

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Notes for editors:

The University of Reading is ranked among the top 1% of universities in the world (THE World University Rankings 2011-12) and in the best 25 universities in the UK (Times, Guardian).

The University of Reading's School of Construction Management is a world leader in teaching and research about the management, design and economics of engineered technologies, primarily in the construction field. Its global reputation for innovation, focused on real-world problems facing the management of the built environment, attracts academics, students and industry professionals of the highest calibre. It has strong links to industry, professional institutions and governments around the world and attained a top international rating of 5 in the most recent Research Assessment Exercise.

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