March 2012 - Waterwise Annual Conference
Nick is a guest panel speaker in 'engaging community users' at the annual Waterwise conference along with senior policy makers and practitioners in national water supply and conservation; including the Water Minister Richard Benyon, Chief Scientific Advisor to the UK Government Sir John Beddington and Donna McKitterick, Head of Strategy and Development, Global Action Plan. He will be discussing research and practical pilots that explore how participatory design methods and tools such as Future Village and Community21 engage users in undertaking 'bottom-up' action for sustainable development and resilience - including water efficiency.
March 2012 - Green Architecture Day
Nick is presenting recent projects including the Future Village and Community21 projects on the 17th of March at the Green Architecture Day.
March 2012 - The PUMA Sustainable Challenge entries are in
The final submissions for the challenge set by global retail giant and sports lifestyle manufacturer PUMA will be submitted on the 8th for judging. Directed by Jonathan and undertaken across the Faculty of Arts Brighton the project will lead to internships with company to develop their sustainable products.
Jan 2012 - 'On Our Doorsteps' Award
Nick, with staff and students from 3D Design and Materials Practice have won funding to undertake and disseminate their project that engages 'local design activism' with partners across the region. The project is a mini-festival of innovative co-design methodologies that explore 'localism' in design and provide mutual benefits.
Jan 2012 - LEAF funding award
Nick has won funding with Community21 through Department of Energy and Climate Change to work with community's local energy development via the LEAF fund (Local Energy Assessment Fund).
Sept 2011 - Rural Commission
Nick is presenting the recent research work on Future Village at the National Rural Commission in Bath
June 2011 - Future Village community pilot, envisioning workshop and plan for 2061
Directed by Nick Gant and Zoe Ganderton from Action in Rural Sussex, in collaboration with The County Records Office and funded by the Gulbenkian Foundation, this envisioning workshop, involves 'hard to reach' sectors of the community in co-designing models for development for Heathfield in 2061 / 50 years ahead. This feeds into proposing a template approach to neighbourhood planning and tests tools for co-design and participation of 'hard-to-reach' groups and intergenerational discourse in community planning and design.
May 2011 - Community 21 presented at Broadband Summit
Community 21 was presented at a Broadband Summit organised and chaired by the Minister for Policing Rt Hon Nick Herbert MP on the 26th of May. The summit focused on enabling communities through the roll out of comprehensive broadband access and included a presentation from The Secretary of State for Culture and Media, Jeremy Hunt and contributions from Chief Executives from BT and Cable and Wireless. The web tool devised by Nick Gant, Teresa Gittins from Action in Rural Sussex is a mechanism that compliments initiatives and legislation forthcoming and present in the localism bill and facilitates the engagement of communities in driving their own, sustainable planning and development whilst integrating with regional service providers.
March 2011 - Community 21 pilot communities launch
The evaluated pilot phase of the project has begun in 8 communities across East Sussex, West Sussex and Kent and the University’s business development team and Action in Rural Sussex aim to roll out the operation nationally with the support of organisations such as the Community Council Network and the potentially the newly formed South Downs National Park forming an interconnected community network or ‘multi-local’ society, each supported by an integrated social enterprise model.
(See activity so far at Community21.org)
April 2011 - Den Building Pilot completed
The lottery funded Den building Pilot completed with a range of social engagement methodologies and stratergies developed and co-design recreational spaces.
March 2011 - Faculty Research Award for 'Sole Searching'
Tanya Dean and Nick Gant have received a £5000 pump prime research award to undertake key aspects of the Sole Searching project with AHRC and Industrial applications in the pipeline to support a major public engagement exhibition in 2012 that will form new data around 'by-product' material narratives, meanings and values applied to industrial contexts.
September 2010 - Rural Futures Conference / Ministerial Meeting
Nick presented the Community21 project at The Rural Futures, AiRS conference and to the Minister for Environment and Climate Change, Charles Hendry.
August 2010 - Lottery Award
From September, Nick and colleagues Jim Wilson and James McAdam will be piloting the 'Den-Building' project as part of a £50,000 community spaces lottery award. This first pilot will explore the notion of communal, creative and sustainable space fabrication as a methodology for education, ecology, skill development, community engagement and of course play as a facilitator to all these.
June 2010 - Puma Vision HQ
Jonathan has been invited to consult to PUMA on ways in which sustainability can become more embedded, at a design level, within this leading global brand.
January 2010 - 'Toolbox / Community21' paper
Nick and co-investigators of the 'Toolbox for 21st Century Village' project have been invited to write a paper for Gateways - The International Journal of Community Research and Engagement. The paper will explore the research context for the project and its unique methodological mechanism as an online social networking and sustainability facilitation tool.
January 2010 - Department of Environment and Climate Change Bid / 'Sustainable Community Spaces' project
Nick is a lead member of a bidding group to the Department of Environment and Climate Change - Low Carbon Communities Challenge as a member of the Ouse Valley Partnership representing the Community21 project and one of the exemplar villages which is focusing onsustainable community spaces. (Bid value £400k).
December 2009 - Research Poster Prize
Jonathan Chapman won the University of Brighton's Research Poster Competition for his continuing work with the influential concept of Emotionally Durable Design - the £1000 prize will be added to project funds.
December 2009 - 'Sole Searching' Project Launched
Tanya Dean and Nick Gant are currently writing a bid to fund the 'Sole Searching' project which explores the creation of ten pairs of shoes as a means to articulate ten stories of contemporary material culture. The project uses the shoes, each of which is formed from a new by-product material generated by the user, as an inclusive communication tool to explicate complex issues of materiality and meaning and wider issues of sustainability, ethics and economics. The project will result in a book, website and exhibition as well as exposing and mapping a hidden network of inter-linked material practices and cultures as well as exploring the strategic embodiment of meaning in recycled, by-product and waste materials.
December 2009 - 'The Thought That Counts' workshop
The first workshop of 'The Thought That Counts' Project co-directed by Nick Gant and Hamish Makgill which explores the researching the creation, distribution and valuation of virtual gifts and digital artifacts - saw the gathering of a group of leading, multi-disciplinary designers and artists who began work on the creation of innovative approaches to gifting in the digital realm. The group included Alex Rich, William Warren, Lin Cheung, Jurg Lehni, Lutz Issler, Sophie Smallhorn, James McAdam, Martin Andersen and Barnaby Barford who joined Nick and Hamish in outlining the creative potential and research scope of the pioneering 'virtual gifts' which will be distributed via a research gathering, web-portal as part of a low-carbon gift economy and a world-wide, virtual laboratory of contributors. Next workshop Feb 10 - project launch planned October 2010.
October 2009 - 'Toolbox' / Community21' workshop
The first formal steering group meeting of the 'Toolbox for the 21st Century Village' (aka Community21) project which is a collaborative action research project between the University and the Rural Community Council (Airs). The project steering group is led by Nick Gant (IF:Lab), Teresa Gittins (AIRS), Peter Day and Gary Brookes (UOB) and Nick Wates (Community Planning.net) and will result in an online content management system and engagement programme that facilitates sustainable development in communities across the country. Using a pioneering social networking and informatics system the facility will enable individual communities to envisage themselves and their sustainable planning as part of an integrated, inter-linked network of 'Multi-Local Communities' (Ezio Manzini 2007). Meetings are regular with the project planned for pilot 'roll-out' in early summer 2010. The project has support and gained interest from a arrange of governance and community agencies; having been presented to Hilary Benn (Secretary of State for the Environment, Farming and Rural Affairs) and at the South East Rural Community Councils Conference 2009 and the Community and Universities Conference 2009.
September 2009 - 'Task Green' Consultancy
Nick has been consulting for Task Green Ltd on the development and promotion of their product which utilizes the industrial recycling of plastics and wood fibres in the construction of screening suitable for flood defenses and sound and safety screening. Nick designed their website and promotional material and is developing opportunities for product development and local flood defence trials.
July 2009 - 'The Thought That Counts' funding
Nick Gant and Hamish Makgill have received capital activation finding and research support funding (£25k) to develop a pilot for 'The Thought That Counts' virtual gifting and digital artifact project. This research, economic and social engagement project will gather data on value systems of virtual creative content and provide an income resource to evolve the project as a low carbon enterprise.
Community 21 - Toolbox for Sustainable Communities at University of Brighton, College of Arts and Humanities
Sustainable design discourse, discussions and debate at 100% Design annual show, ‘100% Sustainable?’
Event was a mix of interactive exhibits, live debates and creative industry workshop sessions with contributions from leading designers.
Product life workshop in which participants responded directly to research gathered at the previous year's ‘100% Sustainable?’ event.
Designers, Visionaries & Other Stories - Book at University of Brighton, College of Arts and Humanities
100% Sustainable? 2006 at University of Brighton, College of Arts and Humanities
Design & Emotion Society at University of Brighton, College of Arts and Humanities
Modern Life is Rubbish at University of Brighton, College of Arts and Humanities
GreenHouse - Interior Architecture at University of Brighton, College of Arts and Humanities
Outline at University of Brighton, College of Arts and Humanities
Plastics Design at University of Brighton, College of Arts and Humanities
Emotionally Durable Design at University of Brighton, College of Arts and Humanities
Bright*-space at University of Brighton, College of Arts and Humanities
Marriage of Materials at University of Brighton, College of Arts and Humanities