Category: BlogPage 1 of 6

Regenerative Design: a process not a thing

As I continue my exploration of regenerative design in engineering, correspondents have said it would be helpful to gather examples of regenerative design. Templates that we can look…

When government bans protest against our projects, engineers must put down their tools

The cornerstone of our democracy is the right to protest. At the moment the government is pushing through amendments to the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill that…

Reflections on transformational innovation

These are my reflective notes as I work through chapter two of Daniel Wahl’s ‘Designing Regenerative Cultures‘. My aim in this reading is to find clues as to…

Our responsibility: reduce carbon on projects by 7% a year starting now

Hold this figure in mind: 7%. In 2019 the UN Environmental Programme (UNEP) published a report concluding that in order to limit global heating to 1.5 degrees, we…

Sometimes I think it needs to get really bad before people will care about energy

In the bakery where I often go to write in the mornings they are having heating fitted. The cafe is in a warehouse and it gets cold in…

The Boy Who Cried Climate Emergency

We all know the story of the boy who cried wolf. He didn’t really mean it. In the end, everyone stopped believing him. Wolf didn’t mean anything. But…

Why is the moon so big / when we spot mistakes

I just dreamed up this example to explain why our mistakes show up at system boundaries. Have you ever noticed that the moon looks much bigger when it…

Hello Planet Earth (goodbye Planet Money)

Sunday morning we cycled through Bristol and up to Leigh Woods. We took the ‘high route’, choosing to climb up through the wealthy streets Clifton. Everywhere oozes money…

Updates from a regenerative system

Our nearby allotments are my local source of food and regenerative inspiration. Sharing my thoughts from this weekend’s visit when I was helping with apple pressing. While Bristol…

Facilitation tools for engineers (and other humans)

This post is still under construction. In this post I am linking together the best of my material on facilitation tools for engineers (and other humans). To facilitate…

Pumpkin world

Daddy, how do I have interesting conversations with people?

Dad heart melt moment. My daughter asked, “how do I have interesting conversations with people?”I said, well, a good place to start is finding out what people are…

Sustainability is no-longer enough

Today I am sharing more of the thinking that went into my vision question for Hazel Hill Wood: what if we became a centre for regenerative practice? It…

Setting a vision question rather than a vision statement

It is my role as Chair of Hazel Hill Trust to be the ‘vision holder’ for the project. There are lots of ways you can interpret what this…

Analogue Skills for Design at the University of Bath

Today at the University of Bath I am running a workshop on Analogue Skills for Design. This workshop fuses material from my conceptual design teaching with my observations…

Act it out – embody your ideas

‘Act it Out’ is my favourite technique for shifting creative thinking from the mind to the body. This post is another in my series on Turning the Kalideascope,…

What happened when I tried to use an old iPod

Once upon a time the offer of 1000 songs in your pocket – the slogan for the iPod – was so enticing. But in 2014 Apple discontinued the…

Notes from a systems design workshop at Hazel Hill

On Saturday at the Hazel Hill Autumn Conservation weekend I ran a systems design workshop as a wet-weather activity. Here are my notes and observations from the session….

Act, advise, advocate in the climate crisis

On the surface I feel like it is business as usual in the construction and engineering industry. Like a polluting ferryboat travelling full speed ahead towards the storm…

Changing the key system to generate new ideas

Changing the key system is a technique I teach to help people develop new ideas when their thinking has become stuck. It’s one of my techniques for ‘turning…

What if you could present only using questions?

What if you could present only using questions? Why might you want to? Well, do you want your answer to listen or to think? What is the most…

What the fuel crisis reveals about the government’s approach to climate breakdown

I’m sharing today my notes on the fuel crisis and what it reveals about how the government is acting in the wider context of climate breakdown. Defending fossil…

Allotment notes: bindweed and fertiliser

I have been spending more time at the allotment as a stimulation for thinking about regenerative design. Notes from yesterday’s visit.

What does regenerative design mean for engineers?

As I wrote in my last post, this summer I have been thinking about regenerative design, and what it means for engineers.  In the context of climate breakdown,…

Towards Regenerative Conceptual Design

I have had the great fortune of having spent three weeks in France, a good portion of it cycling. Touring is a great way to leave behind your…

Find the disputable brief in your project

The disputable brief is a term I’ve coined to describe the bits of the brief that make your project worthwhile and different. It is easy to write a…

From great to transformative: training and workshops that stick

How do you run a great workshop or training day that really makes a difference to the way people work? The keys are ownership and reflection.  In my…

Analogue Challenge 001: look for the time

On other people’s wrists, on clock towers, outside the jewellers, inside shops, at the station, on the scrolling news, from the position of the sun. Ask someone or…

Four reflective modes for engineers and other humans

I once worked for a client who said his ambition for his firm was that it should become a learning organisation. That thought stuck with me. What if,…

Analogue Skill 009: Sketch what you see

Take out a piece of paper and draw a sketch of what you can see. You will notice more than you ever would by taking a photograph. Sketching…