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McAslan relaunches £10,000 student bursary

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Entries are being sought for the re-opened RIBA McAslan Bursary – which has been boosted by £10,000 from the Environment Agency.

The government watchdog last year announced that it would back the 2015 competition, which funds student, graduate or newly-qualified architects and engineers to develop a design research project.

Over the past ten years, the programme has support a number of emerging names including Asif Khan, Adam Khan and the AJ’s 2014 Emerging Women Architect of the Year Julia King. However the scheme wasn’t run in 2013 and 2014.

This year’s projects will be expected to propose a solution to a challenge posed by climate change or weather extremes.

John McAslan, chairman of John McAslan + Partners, said ‘The bursary offers architecture and engineering students and graduates a remarkable opportunity to develop innovative projects. In previous years, the bursary has cultivated positive and real change for the environment and communities involved.’

Julia King, architect and previous bursary winner, said: ‘The bursary, for me personally, enabled that transition from education into practice.

‘It is a unique opportunity to fund action based research rooted in real contexts with guidance and support from a range of top level professionals.’

Asif Khan, director of practice Asif Khan and previous bursary winner, said: ‘While being at the heart of our academic project, the bursary also created a level of professional accountability for our work due to the multiple stakeholders involved, introduced us to controlling budgets, interdisciplinary collaboration and communicating ideas to other professionals.’

This year, entrants can apply for grants of up to £5,000 to support their project, with a deadline of 1 October.

The government’ chief construction adviser, Peter Hansford, will support the bursary scheme as an adviser, while the Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE) will continue as partners.
In previous years, the bursary has been funded by John McAslan + Partners and run by the RIBA and ICE. Earlier themes have covered shelter and refugee housing, energy conservation initiatives and architecture as an educational tool.

Previous winners

  • Roof Garden, Mumbai by Nicola Antaki, Mumbai, India (2012)
  • The Alternative Seating Guide by Sophie Handler, London (2010)
  • Is a Well Really Sustainable? by Yolanda Chakava, Nairobi, Kenya (2010)
  • We Heart the Suburbs by Sarah Considine/Melanie Bax, Southend-on-Sea (2010)
  • Community Infrastructure in Rural Nigeria by Heather Cruickshank, Nigeria (2008)
  • Lessons for Building Back Better by Ripin Kalra, India (2008)
  • One-Year House by Asif Khan and Julia King, Thailand (2008)
  • Vernacular Values by Nikki Linsell, Romania (2007)
  • Tea Dance by Sophie Handler, London (2007)
  • Regeneration of Embankment Life in West Africa by Julia Bouvy, Senegal (2007)
  • Shade Cental by Craig Bamford, India (2006)
  • Les Femmes Dynamiques by Claudia Amico,Senegal (2006)
  • New Horizon Youth Centre by Adam Khan London (2005)
  • People in Space by Pascale Scheurer, London (2005)
  • Shelter Module by Tom Corsellis Global (2005)
  • Grid City by Joann Tang, London (2005)


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