Staff from Architecture, Interior Architecture, Product Design, MA Sustainable Design and MA Architectural Urban Design came together this week for the first meeting about how we as a school want to address Architectural (and Design) Education Declares. The manifesto may have come from architecture students, but we wanted to debate how Brighton students and staff will work together to make it meaningful to our communities. Furthermore how we frame the future agenda to ensure it is inclusive to our whole school. With the huge amount of knowledge and passion that is already is very much the School of Architecture and Design there were lots of ideas and challenges to discuss.
With both the Global Climate Strike to support the school strike protests and the Labour Party Conference happening in Brighton in the first week of term there was much to think about.
There was a very strong commitment to empowering both our new and existing students, so they can engage in a meaningful way with these important debates. As staff we agreed we should be guiding not imposing and helping students make informed decisions with a real sense of agency. The first week of term will be just the start of many activities, discussions and changes to the curriculum.
The group will take the name ‘The Future We Want’ as it references Rio +20, and so is both global and regional, and inclusive of all disciplines. Our core values will be the UN Sustainable Development Goals initially and then we will decide where we are responding to which ones and when.
As a staff body we have a wealth of knowledge and commitment to making change happen so with students as partners we will be putting pressure on the University Executive Board to sign the University & College sector’s collective response to the Global Goals.
We have the energy and experience to lead this and so with the Big Build happening over the next three years the hoardings outside Mithras House will be where a physical record of our ‘journey’ (past, present & future) will be visually recorded for all to see. So watch this space.