Written by

Ran Boydell

Visiting Lecturer in Sustainable Development, Heriot-Watt University at PrimeResi

I have taught sustainable development for masters courses at both Edinburgh and Heriot-Watt Universities. At the heart of my teaching is the premise that sustainable is "normal" - that it is an essential part of how societies operate and integral to the history of human civilisation - and that by understanding it in this way we can more readily see how to integrate the principles of sustainable development into every aspect of our lives in the face of the climate and biodiversity emergency. I am particularly interested in what practical actions we can take to create a rapid and radical transition to a sustainable society. Renewable energy is an essential part of this, including building-integrated generation but also storage, heat pumps, electric vehicles, and active grid management, as part of an emerging energy system whereby resource generation is distributed (Distributed Energy Resource system). My focus with buildings is on how we can build cost-competitively to zero-carbon standards now, using natural non-oil-derived materials which help to achieve low embodied carbon as well as high indoor air quality and broader environmental benefits. In architecture, I obtained my Part 1 from the University of Sydney and Part 2 from Edinburgh College of Art. I am registered as an Architect in Australia and am studying (still) for my Part 3 in the UK.