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Published: 05 July 2016

CES hosts Showcase 2016

A two-day event held by the University’s Centre for Environmental Strategy highlighted its recent ground-breaking research in the field of sustainability.

The CES (Centre for Environmental Strategy) Showcase 2016 took place on 29 and 30 June, and brought together over 100 academics, researchers and industry partners working at the forefront of sustainability research and practice. The organisers were also delighted to welcome the University’s Vice-Chancellor Professor G Q Max Lu, Provost Professor Michael Kearney and Professor Jonathan Seville, Dean of the Faculty of Engineering and Physical Sciences, to the event.

Held to mark the move of CES to a new ‘home’ on campus, the Showcase included an Open Afternoon, the 2016 Roland Clift lecture, and a joint conference for researchers and organisations participating in the two doctoral programmes in sustainability run by the Centre.

Hosted by Professor Richard Murphy, Director of CES, the Open Afternoon was an opportunity for the Centre’s academics to share the highlights of recent research across a range of fields. These included a presentation by Professor of Sustainable Development Tim Jackson on the work of Surrey’s new Centre for the Understanding of Sustainable Prosperity (CUSP); an interactive session led by Professor of Sustainable Consumption and Production Angela Druckman and PhD student Simon Mair, which imagined what a prosperous UK in 2075 might look like; a talk by Erica Russell, doctoral practitioner at CES and Carillion plc, on  procurement and sustainability in the construction sector; and a talk on the EPSRC CLEVER project – which focuses on consumer behaviour around handhold electronic devices – by Dr Jacquetta Lee.

The Roland Clift lecture – a prestigious annual event named after renowned environmentalist Professor Roland Clift who established CES in 1992 – welcomed Jacqueline Cramer, Professor in Sustainable Innovation at Utrecht University. Professor Cramer addressed the challenges of transitioning towards a ‘circular economy’ (an economic and industrial system based on reusing products and raw materials) using the Amsterdam region as a case study. Her main message was that the circular economy provides significant opportunities for economic, environmental and social benefits but in order to grasp these opportunities we all need to take responsibility and work together to make the transition.

For the past 20 years, CES has been home to a series of pioneering doctoral programmes in sustainability which enable organisations to work closely with high calibre doctoral practitioners on co-developed projects, while drawing on the facilities and expertise of CES and the wider university academic community. Highlighting this work on the second day of the Showcase was the Annual Practitioner Doctorate in Sustainability (PDS) and Engineering Doctorate programme in Sustainability and Energy Systems (SEES) Conference. This provided an invaluable opportunity for doctoral practitioners and research engineers to present their research findings, share ideas and network with industry and other academics. The research presented covered a range of collaborative research being done at IKEA, Carillon plc, Rolls Royce, Unilever and Thames Water. Joss Tantram from Terrafiniti gave the keynote lecture on ‘Exploring Rejuvenative Technology and Enterprise’.

PDS Director Dr Jacquetta Lee described the conference as: “A wonderful event exhibiting the breadth and depth of excellent research within the programme and demonstrating the future benefits for industry.”

Professor Richard Murphy concluded, “We were delighted to put on the CES Sustainability Showcase 2016 and really encouraged by the many positive comments received, the most frequent of which was ‘inspiring’.”

Discover our programmes in Environment and Sustainability, including our EngD Practitioner Doctorate in Sustainability.