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NUS School of Design and Environment

The SDE Bulletin

October 2013



News & Highlights

World Economic Forum: Innovations crucial for world’s future


Innovation is an important driver for economic and societal growth, especially growth that is inclusive, sustainable and resilient. However, challenges lie in how the conditions for such innovation can be created for societal and economic advancement. Questions to address include the best ways to more effectively foster innovation and commercialisation of new insights and discoveries; the right balance between basic and applied research; support for interdisciplinary and global partnerships; and rethinking the role of government and other stakeholders to provide a more conducive environment.

These were some of the issues raised when NUS President Professor Tan Chorh Chuan moderated the session on “Building Innovation Ecosystems” at the Annual Meeting of the New Champions 2013. Otherwise known as the Summer Davos of the World Economic Forum (WEF), the event held at Dalian, China from 11 to 13 September this year focused on “Meeting the Innovation Imperative”. Read more

SDE Clinches Third Prize at 3rd Vertical Cities Asia International Design Competition


Amidst rapid urbanisation in Asia, how do we ensure sustainable food production? Students hailing from 10 universities in Asia, Europe and the United States contended with this issue during this year’s Vertical Cities Asia International Design Competition.

Tongji University clinched the top prize, followed by ETH Zurich. SDE Department of Architecture students came in third for the entry titled “The Collective City.” Organised by SDE, the annual competition is sponsored by international philanthropic organisation World Future Foundation Ltd (WFF) and the Beijing Vantone Citylogic Investment Corporation. Read more

Design Incubation Centre Book Launch

Egg-shaped devices that enhance communication, a fresh spin on day-to-day houseware and avant-garde eco-car designs were some of the innovative designs captured in a new book titled Design Incubator: A Prototype for New Design Practice. This is the first time the NUS Design Incubation Centre (DIC) has detailed its research, process and philosophy on design and the future of design practices in print.

The sleekly produced publication was launched by Professor Heng Chye Kiang, Dean of the School of Design and Environment at NUS and Mr Patrick Chia, Director of DIC, on 30 April. Read more

Staff Achievements

Prof Heng Chye Kiang
Prof Heng was appointed as a committee member National Innovation Challenge on Land and Liveability. The L&L NIC is an integrated R&D programme which aims to create new space cost-effectively and optimise the use of space to sustain Singapore’s long-term growth and resilience. He was appointed to sit on the R&D Committee and the Optimising Use of Space Workgroup. The term of the appointment is three years.

A/Prof Chandra Sekhar
A/Prof Sekhar has been awarded the ASHRAE Exceptional Service Award. The presentation took place at the ASHRAE Society’s Annual Conference in Denver, Colorado, during the Plenary Session on Saturday, 22 Jun 2013. This award recognizes members who have served the Society faithfully and with exemplary effort, far in excess (45 service points) of that required for the Distinguished Service Award (15 service points). The individual must have been a full grade Member for a minimum of ten years and be a past recipient of the Distinguished Service Award.

Dr Malone-Lee Lai Choo
Dr Malone was invited to speak at the Plenary Session of the Roundtables Towards Cross-Disciplinary Network on Sustainability Education at Higher Education Level, organised by the Graduate Program in Sustainability Science –Global Leadership Initiative (GPSS-GLI) and Asian Program for Incubation of Environmental Leaders (APIEL) at the University of Tokyo. The roundtables are held in conjunction with the International Symposium on ‘Fostering Future Leaders for Sustainable Society’ held from 9 to 10 Jan 2013 at the University of Tokyo.

Student Achievements

Chen Shunann (Master of Architecture)
Quek See Hong (Master of Architecture)
Leon Yzelman (Master of Architecture)
Lynette Liew (Master of Architecture)
Terence Chua (Master of Architecture)

Five students from the Department of Architecture were awarded the Jury Prize for Best Urban Amenities in the 2013 Ed Bacon Student Design Competition held on 21 Feb 2013. The competition has been held annually since 2006, by the Philadelphia Centre for Architecture.

Wong Zhi Ying BSc (PFM), Year 4
Lionel Gerard Chong Zhi Wei BSc (PFM), Year 4
Hendy Sofian BSc (PFM), Year 4
Poh Chai Ling BSc (PFM), Year 4
Lai Chin Wee BA (Architecture), Year 2
Louis Lim BA Architecture, Year 3

At the recent BCA‐CDL Green Sparks Competition held at the BCA Academy on 15 Mar 2013, students from the SDE Departments of Architecture and Building beat 22 other teams from five local tertiary institutions to clinch the top prize of $10,000 cash and a plaque. The team, named The Greenworks, submitted "The Greenswitz", which impressed the judges with its unique approach that cleverly balanced both passive and active architecture considerations with practical and reusable structural elements. Another team, ‘SDE Sparklers’ was awarded the third prize while two other NUS teams, from SDE and Department of Civil Engineering received merit prizes.

Roger Yeo Wei Ming, BA (Industrial Design) Alumni, Class of 2011

Roger’s design, ReAble, a mobility aid built to help the elderly live active and independent lives, has received a ‘Special Mention’ citation at the international BraunPrize 2012. Roger designed ReAble for his grandmother as his final year design thesis project. The walking frame has an enhanced grip and a twist-lock feature that folds the frame for portability. The final judging session took place at the BraunPrize Forum in Sep 2012.

The Giving Spotlight

SDE Greater Good Series – Shaping our Future through Energy Efficiency

From left to right: Professor Matheos Santamouris, Dr. John Keung, Mr Lee Chuan Seng and Associate Professor Lee Siew Eang

Chaired by Mr Lee Chuan Seng, the Emeritus Chairman of Beca Asia, the inaugural SDE Greater Good Series (GGS) forum explored the lessons, trends and research in energy efficiency and its role in shaping our future.

The speakers were Dr. John Keung, CEO of Building and Construction Authority, Professor Matheos Santamouris, Professor of Energy Physics at the University of Athens and a visiting professor at SDE’s Department of Building, and Dr. Lee Siew Eang, Associate Professor at SDE’s Department of Building.

The SDE GGS features talks by leading minds on design, development and management of the built environment which will improve quality of life and lead to greater good for the society at large. The series is made possible thanks to a generous gift from Newsman Realty Pte Ltd.

BEMA sets up bursary to help needy students

Dr. Teo Ho Pin (middle) presented the cheque of a generous gift from the BEMA to the Head of the Department of Building Associate Professor Willie Tan (left) and the Head of Department of Real Estate Professor Deng Yongheng (right)

Dr. Teo Ho Pin (SDE ’85), Mayor of the North West District and President of NUS’ Building and Estate Management Alumni (BEMA), recently rallied his fellow alumni to establish the BEMA Bursary to help needy students at SDE’s Department of Building and Department of Real Estate. Read more

Shell gift continues to nurture environmental leadership

Mr Lee Tzu Yang (right) presented the Shell Best Dissertation Award to Ms Melissa Low (left)

“Environmental sustainability is a shared responsibility” – This is what Mr Lee Tzu Yang, Chairman of Shell Companies in Singapore and former NUS’ trustee believes. He presented the Shell Best Dissertation Award to Ms Melissa Low for her dissertation “Past and Contemporary Proposals on Differentiation and Equity: Shaping the 2015 Climate Agreement” at the Master of Science (Environmental Management) Welcome and Award Ceremony recently. Read more

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