BEST Research Institute forges Anglo-Scottish links
12 April 2011
Alan Seath, a Director of the Lomond Group, recently visited the School of the Built Environment to participate in a Q&A discussion with students on the MSc Sustainable Built Environment, via the online virtual Wimba classroom. The postgraduate course is a new programme that uses online delivery to students based in the workplace.
The Q&A discussion was part of the 'Leadership for a Sustainable Built Environment' module which focuses on the leadership challenges of moving the sustainability agenda forward in the construction sector.
Alan is highly engaged with the sustainability agenda in Scotland. He leads the Fife Construction Forum as chairman and works closely with the Fife Council Education Service and local colleges as well as Skills Development Scotland on developing skills/education/business partnership to promote career opportunities in the construction industry. He is a member of the Scottish Government Private Stakeholder Group looking at new planning reforms and a member of the Parliamentary Cross Party Working Group on Construction.
After the visit Alan commented: “This was a very worthwhile and personally rewarding exercise which benefitted students, lecturers and the industry alike. The level of questioning is what I expected from Master Degree and PhD Students some very thought provoking. This type of academic exercise is an important part of the learning process for students (the construction industry’s future) as they hear from practitioners.”
Alan has been seeking to partner with colleges and universities, and following success north of the border, he is now interested in forging links with institutions in England. Dr David Bryde, Reader in Management and Programme Leader for the MSc Sustainable Built Environment, commented: “The idea of an Anglo-Scottish partnership is an excellent one and is something worth exploring further.”
Alan and David are currently investigating ways to develop such a partnership. One initiative is by the Fife Housing Innovation Fair & Exhibition (a housing association driven project) which has the purpose of promoting the housing innovation element within the industry. The proposal is to develop up to 9 blocks (25 units) to showcase a range of Modern Methods of Construction (MMC) systems, with the aim being to assess the ability and viability of the house systems as part of future mainstream affordable housing projects. Alan has suggested that the School, via the BEST Research Institute, could be involved in assessing the sustainability of selected MMC systems and talks regarding this are ongoing.
Pictured: Alan Seath and Dr David Bryde