AUTHOR

Karl Dickinson

71 POSTS
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Enthusiastic about real change that impacts real lives. Believer in the power of the individual; it can make all the difference. I enjoy connecting with people who have the wildest ideas and the enthusiasm to bring them to life.

Malmö: City of Construction Circularity

Sweden’s premier southwestern city Malmö is not only a crowning glory in Scandinavian architecture, nature, and quality of life, but also in sustainability. The city is gaining notoriety as a bastion in new construction practices. The municipality’s Sustainability Strategist Anna Bernstad tells us what makes Malmö a trailblazer in...

Community Sociologist Jeni Cross: Building Better Retrofitting Behaviours

A toxic mix of bad habits and infrastructure that prevents change is holding sustainability back. This is as true for retrofitting as anything. Community sociologist Doctor Jeni Cross has dedicated 20 years to researching the relationship between human behaviour and the systems that surround us. She tells CityChangers.org what...

CityChanger Dominik Campanella: Accelerating Circularity with Data

Digitisation of the construction sector is an important step. It will simplify and streamline material reuse and carbon emission reduction. But this takes brains, cooperation between computing and construction, and a personal determination to create a circular economy regardless of how hard the journey gets. That’s Dominik Campanella down...

“Listen Before You Speak” – The Secret to Impactful Policymaking: Miquel Vidal-Bover

What makes someone choose policymaking as a career path? In the case of polyglot Miquel Vidal-Bover, it comes from seeing a city’s pressing issues first-hand and knowing where his skills can be best applied. Young Leader Miquel Vidal-Bover has an impressive resume. He has already conducted research into segregation in...

Renovating Makes Cents: How to Retrofit on a Budget

Realistically, for a shot at halting climate change, we need to make buildings more efficient, big time, with widespread retrofit rollouts in the next few years! Regardless of good intentions, that’s not easy without disposable cash. So, how can we possibly improve older buildings if money is tight? We...

Unplanned Urbanism and the Feminist City: Sharee Hochman

What makes a CityChanger? Young Leader Sharee Hochman proves that it’s not an academic background or a position in city administration, but personal qualities like compassion coupled with good ideas and a desire to make a difference is what it truly takes. Here Sharee shares with us an inspirational...

Modern Methods of Construction: Common Challenges and Solutions

If the question is ‘how do we build enough to house our growing populations?’, some espouse modern methods of construction as the answer. Although MMC promises cleaner construction and improved comfort for residents, uptake is still relatively understated. We caught up with Trina Chakravarti to understand what’s holding back...

Urban Planning – “It’s Not Hard Science”

With so many interest groups all wanting representation in the decisions that form our living cities, it isn’t easy getting it right. There will be those who are unrepresented, those involved but who do not feel heard, and others still who always get their way and are suspicious of...

Recycling Construction and Demolition Waste with SeRaMCo

Is there a market for recycled concrete? This was such a sizeable question that the EU part-funded a multi-million-Euro project to find out. Leading SeRaMCo, Christian Glock set out to ascertain how construction and demolition waste can be put to good use. We caught up with him to talk...

CityChanger Trina Chakravarti: Champion of Modern Methods of Construction

Traditional construction practices are emission-heavy. Switching to modern methods of construction (MMC) can help mitigate our impact on climate change, but what does that look like exactly? We turned to CityChanger Trina Chakravarti, Project Director for Building Better and MMC advocate, to find out. The UK is in the midst...

How to Motivate the Transition to Community Energy

Community energy is an agent of decarbonisation. Transition in the sector is gaining momentum. How can we motivate people to get involved and maintain that trajectory? We asked Éva Goudouneix, Community Development Manager with Repowering London, how she approaches her work with London’s locals. Stakeholder Engagement - Advice from the...

Turn a New Leaf: How to Change Behaviour

Initiating a high-impact project is one thing, but what good is it if no one participates? Convincing others to get onboard is about more than just handing them a list of benefits; it’s about changing often deeply ingrained behaviours. But where to start? Commitment to sustainable concepts relies on an...

Reviving Thriving Communities Through Meanwhile Housing

We’re in the midst of a housing crisis: too few affordable homes for our growing population. Quick wins are usually synonymous with shoddy quality, but meanwhile housing bucks that trend. We spoke with Lorna Walker and Rebekah Foote of Modomo to find out how temporary residential projects can reinvigorate...

Recycling Concrete: Can We Really Reuse Construction and Demolition Waste?

Concrete. As a staple of construction, it’s everywhere in our cities. What happens when a building has served its purpose? Could we recover, recycle, and rebuild with construction and demolition waste material? Would that reduce construction’s harmful environmental impact? We wanted to know the possibilities and challenges concrete poses,...

Notable City Skellefteå: The Sky’s the Limit… in Wood

One city in Sweden has been getting a lot of attention. The 20-storey plyscraper Sara kulturhus is one example of how notable city Skellefteå is pioneering the realms of wooden construction, but there’s a lot more going on. Significant inward investment has turned this modest-sized municipality from declining urban...

CityChanger Lior Steinberg: A Different Kind of Human

Why are we obsessed with success and fearful of failure? Often, it’s the unexpected trials and tribulations that provide the most valuable learning opportunities. Lior Steinberg is a rarity: with so many irons in the fire, he happily admits when something doesn’t go quite right. Thankfully, he’s not afraid...

What Not to Do: How to Avoid Common Retrofitting Mistakes

Are you keen to retrofit? That’s what we like to hear. But hold your horses! Do you know what you’re doing? We mean, really know. Being ill-prepared may result in not-so-efficient changes, wasting more time, money, and energy than is necessary. So, whether you’re planning a project or running...

CityChanger Michaela Maresch: Lessons in Modular Construction

Modular construction is emerging as a quick and reliable way to build new houses. Although these usually conform to a template, rolled out in their hundreds, Michaela Maresch had the guts to rethink the genre. As co-founder of COMMOD HOUSE in Graz, Austria, this CityChanger has developed bespoke, transportable,...