Center for Integrated Design

November 14, 2017

UW IDL in China: Building International Partnerships to Design and Construct Low Carbon Cities

Associate Professor Christopher Meek and Research Associate Professor Heather Burpee from the UW Integrated Design Lab (IDL) recently traveled to China as part of a University-wide effort to work closer with Chinese counterparts in building a low-carbon urban future.

Meek traveled to Shanghai to present at China’s first Zero Net Carbon (ZNC) professional training workshop, co-hosted by Architecture 2030 and the China Exploration and Design Association Architecture Branch. Organized by the Tongji Architectural Design Group Co. LTD, the event was the first of its kind to support planners, architects, building industry professionals, and future trainers across China to implement ZNC design and construction. Meek provided training on daylighting and integrated lighting design, drawing upon case studies of the IDL’s technical assistance work across the Pacific Northwest.

In Chengdu (Sichuan Province), Burpee joined Washington Lt. Governor Cyrus Habib, UW Vice Provost for Research Mary Lidstrom, Clean Energy Institute (CEI) Director Dan Schwartz and other UW faculty and staff to meet with representatives from Tsinghua University’s Energy Internet Research Institute (EIRI) and provincial leaders. CEI and EIRI signed a collaborative agreement, and EI committed to fund two seed projects, focused on low emission transportation and the multi-scale engineering of clean energy systems. This work is part of the “2+2 MOU” that Washington state, Sichuan Province, UW, and Tsinghua University signed in 2015 to support collaborative research on clean energy and sustainable cities.

The UW IDL works closely with Tsinghua University’s Building Energy Research Center (THU BERC) to co-research building energy use and specific factors influencing consumption. Our collaborative research aims to provide an evidence-base for decision-makers and building professionals on what impacts a building’s energy use and how, in order to identify and implement targeted design and construction methods and technologies.