The Building Performance Centre at Edinburgh Napier University led by
Professor Sean Smith was the first to research `robust details' for sound
insulation during 2001-2004. This resulted in a government consultation,
new regulatory approach, higher quality of life for home occupants,
multi-stakeholder engagement and knowledge exchange via a Design Handbook
with 4,700 subscribers. Since 2008, over 300,000 robust detail homes have
been built, noise complaints have fallen four-fold, site compliance rates
have shifted from 35% to 99%, Smith leads a European 32-country robust
design group and 16 patented products are manufactured in the UK.
This study presents the impact of research by Plymouth's Environmental
Building Group (EBG) and Centre for Earthen Architecture (CEA) on industry
and regulatory bodies. These interconnected groups research the
manufacture, construction, preservation and performance (thermal, hygral
and acoustic) of new and old buildings of diverse construction, including
earth, straw-bale and hemp-lime. EBG/CEA research has impacted the energy
consumption of 690+ homeowners (21st Century Living; DECC/Eden) and
contributed to national standards for construction and conservation
(BRE/DEBA/English Heritage). Industry partnerships/projects include: Zero
Carbon House, Kevin McCabe Ltd; Carfrae Sustainable Design; Hukseflux;
Cornish Lime Company.
Since its formation in 2005, the Interaction Research Studio (IRS or `the
Studio') has developed
distinctive practice-based research into new interactional possibilities
afforded by digital
technologies. Over the course of eight externally-funded projects the
Studio has worked on during
this time, it has made methodological and conceptual
contributions in the course of producing
exemplary research products.
Research undertaken on energy policy and sustainability by Prof. Mitchell
and the Energy Policy Group (EPG) within Geography at Exeter, has had a
major influence on the development and reform of UK, EU and global energy
policy. This research has informed policy advice to the UK government on
the fundamental re-setting of electricity market reforms and underpinned a
number of major policy reports e.g., the 2008 `EU's Target for Renewable
Energy' report; the 2010 `Future of Britain's Electricity Networks'
report; the 2011 `Electricity Market Reform' report; the 2012 `Draft
Energy Bill'; and the 2012 DECC Energy Security Strategy Report. Research
by the EPG has also led to numerous engagements with key stakeholders in
the energy industry that have influenced policies, procedures and
practices, and been used to inform public debate on energy
Research on the environmental safety and toxicity of nanomaterials in fishes has had a global
impact across both government and industry contributing to:
(i) Consensus building on biological effects allowing regulatory agencies/governments to
make proper decisions on the hazard of nanomaterials to farmed fish and wildlife.
(ii) Critical evaluation of the internationally agreed process of toxicity testing to determine
whether the current legislative test methods are fit for purpose and acceptable to the
(iii) Identification of national/international research priorities and policies via work with the
OECD and the US Government.
(iv) Influencing government policy to support training and information for industry.
In 2008-2009 the UK was subject to legal infraction proceedings at the
European Court of Justice
(ECJ) for allegedly failing to implement the European Union's Urban
Directive (UWWTD). Research by the Institute of Estuarine and Coastal
Studies, Hull (IECS) for
the Environment Agency (EA)/Defra provided evidence to the UK Government
for its defence
against these allegations. The research consisted of:
- literature/data reviews and collection and analysis of critical
evidence from the Humber.
- co-ordinating workshops and convening an expert panel of sufficient
opinion to counteract the European Court of Justice allegations.
In December 2009 the European Court of Justice ruled in favour of the UK.
Our research therefore
helped to save very significant, unnecessary capital investment in
nutrient removal technology for
sewage treatment nationally and in the Yorkshire and Humber region
especially. The UK
government thus avoided the possibility of major European Commission fines
of up to €703,000
per day, or €256m per annum, for infraction of the Urban Water-water
Treatment Directive .
This case study focuses on the development and usage of self-help
material designed to aid people in feeling and performing better. It has
achieved impact through raising awareness via mass media and professional
outlets. Research informed self-help materials are available for open
access via media links, academic organisations, service organisations
(NHS), commercial organisations (London Marathon), national governing
bodies (Research Councils), and professional bodies (British Association
of Sport and Exercise Sciences). An on-line project, run in conjunction
with BBC Lab
UK, developed and tested self-help interventions with 75,000 users
each receiving personalised feedback from former Olympian Michael Johnson.
The impacts of this study by the Mackintosh Environmental Architecture
Research Unit (MEARU) with two other research units arise from auditing
and analysing domestic laundering (100 homes surveyed), and positing
solutions to mitigating `fuel poverty' (energy cost >10% disposable
income) and improving health-linked aspects of indoor air quality —
identifying direct and indirect energy usage attributable to laundering,
and the detrimental environmental consequences of added humidity. Impacts
since completion in 2012 relate to public engagement — meetings with a key
regulatory body, dissemination events and a successful publicity campaign
at regional, national and international level, marking the launch of a
Over the past 13 years the University of Bath has been leading research
into low-impact bio-based construction materials, including the
construction and testing of two full-scale prototype buildings: BaleHaus
(2009) and HemPod (2010) built on campus. The research has directly
promoted: the development and wider market acceptance of award winning low
carbon construction products (ModCell® and Hemcrete®);
successful delivery of award winning buildings; and the wider sector
uptake of these technologies, including in a new school building in Bath.
The work has directly benefited industry partners working to meet UK
Government policy requirements to deliver low carbon infrastructure and
benefited society through the delivery of affordable sustainable
The types of impact highlighted in this case study are: improved
effectiveness of workplace practices in relation to health and safety
management, time management and collaborative working; development of
resources to enhance professional practice; stimulation of practitioner
debate on the impact of new legislation on criminal liability for poor
management of health and safety; and improvement in turnover of SMEs
through ICT adoption. The mechanisms by which the impact was achieved were
KTPs, membership of relevant industry panels and organisation of relevant
workshops, CPD events and similar events aimed at practitioners.