Royal Commission announces first Regenerative Design Fellows

Commission support will enable Michael Pawlyn and Oliver Broadbent to continue their efforts to embed regenerative principles into design

The Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851 has announced the first ever recipients of its new Fellowship in Regenerative Design. The Fellowships have been awarded to Oliver Broadbent of Constructivist Ltd, and Michael Pawlyn of Exploration Architecture.

This two-year Fellowship, worth up to £50,000 per year, is awarded to pioneers in Regenerative Design. The Commission’s support will be used to advance the development of beneficial design and construction techniques and advance research and innovation into built environment adaption techniques to foster a regenerative future.

The Commission is seeking, through the creation of the Regenerative Design Fellowship, to lessen the harm caused by human activities on the living world and to progress design techniques and ideas that repair living systems and enable people and places to flourish.

Oliver Broadbent is the Founder and Director of Constructivist Ltd, a training practice that specializes in design education for engineers in the climate and ecological crises. Oliver was previously recipient of the Sir Misha Black Award for Innovation in Design Education Award from the Commission for his innovative approach to training engineers. Through his Regenerative Design Fellowship, Oliver seeks to pursue the work already underway at Constructivist to turn regenerative design theory into built environment leadership. Passionate about the role that engineers have to play in mitigating and adapting to the climate emergency, Oliver has spent the last decade pioneering design education and supporting engineers to challenge the status quo through better design thinking.

Michael Pawlyn is the Founder of Exploration Architecture, author of Biomimicry in Architecture and co-author of Flourish alongside Sarah Ichioka, and one of the principal designers of the Eden Project in Cornwall. One of the early pioneers of regenerative design principles, he has a long history of promoting ideas around the circular economy and how the modern world can adapt and transition towards one more in tune with the natural environment. Michael’s focus is on biomimicry – taking inspiration from biological systems as a way of investigating human architecture and society.

Through the entirety of their Fellowships with the 1851 Royal Commission, Oliver Broadbent and Michael Pawlyn will receive funding and enrichment in order to pursue the wider goal of centralising regenerative principles as a key idea in the future of design.

John Lavery, Secretary for the Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851, said “Regenerative Design is a vital force for reducing the ecological and environmental damage caused by human activity. The Commission is enthusiastic about its first Fellows in Regenerative Design and we look forward to seeing the successful impact of their work on our built environment and humanity’s approaches to design."