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IDBE collaboration with the Arup Education Trust (AET): 'The collaboration reflects exactly what the IDBE embodies; the opportunity to learn from and support each other, across disciplines, countries and backgrounds.' Alice Moncaster, IDBE

last modified May 17, 2016 03:15 PM

The Arup Education Trust (AET) owns 30% of Arup’s South African operation.  It exists to enhance the quality of lives of disadvantaged youths through education and skills development.  Recently this enhancement took the shape of a collaboration with the IDBE programme.  Arup has a lengthy association with IDBE, from which several of its staff have graduated.  In November 2015, Hannah Baker, a PhD student at Cambridge who is researching decision-making tools for large scale retrofitting projects, visited South Africa where she ran a workshop for all the tertiary beneficiaries of the AET.  The AET students worked in groups where they role-played project stakeholders considering the potential redevelopment of a gas works site in Johannesburg. 

Collage of images taken at the workshop in Johannesburg with Hannah Baker
Collage of images taken at the workshop in Johannesburg with Hannah Baker

In April 2016, the top performing AET student, Kwena Mabotsa, visited Cambridge where she participated in a residential week with IDBE masters students.  The week was focussed on Heritage, conservation & retrofit. Kwena joined one of the teams tackling the associated studio project for the week – The Museum of London Smithfield competition – and in addition to visiting the Smithfield site, was exposed to a rich variety of lectures on a range of topics, cross cultural interaction and interdisciplinary working.

A rooftop view of London for the IDBE group, courtsey of Alan Baxter's as part of the site visit to Smithfield Market
IDBE group with Alan Baxter staff

Kwena said of her week in Cambridge, 'I had the most exciting and memorable time of my life when I was there.'

Both the IDBE Programme and the AET are intending for the relationship continue.

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