My WdKA

Living Station

Week 22
  • Living Station Inspiration

Rachel Armstrong – Architecture that repairs itself?

Venice is sinking. To save it, Rachel Armstrong says we need to outgrow architecture made of inert materials and, well, make architecture that grows itself. She proposes a not-quite-alive material that does its own repairs and sequesters carbon, too.

Why you should listen

Rachel Armstrong innovates and designs sustainable solutions for the built and natural environment using advanced new technologies such as, Synthetic Biology – the rational engineering of living systems – and smart chemistry. Her research prompts a reevaluation of how we think about our homes and cities and raises questions about sustainable development of the built environment. She creates open innovation platforms for academia and industry to address environmental challenges such as carbon capture & recycling, smart ‘living’ materials and sustainable design.

Her award winning research underpins her bold approach to the way that she challenges perceptions, presumptions and established principles related to scientific concepts and the building blocks of life and society. She embodies and promotes new transferrable ways of thinking ‘outside of the box’ and enables others to also develop innovative environmental solutions. Her innovative approaches are outlined in her forthcoming TED Book on Living Architecture.

Watch Rachel Armstrong’s TED Fellows talk, “Creating Carbon-Negative Architecture” >>

What others say

“Scientists need to work outside their own areas of expertise to make new technologies that are pertinent to the 21st century and to collaborate, both with other scientific disciplines and the arts and humanities.” — Rachel Armstrong