Shifting from Sustainability to Regeneration

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* Article: Forum: Shifting from 'sustainability' to regeneration. By Bill Reed. Building Research and Information 35(6):674-680, November 2007. DOI: 10.1080/09613210701475753

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"Sustainability, as currently practised in the built environment, is primarily an exercise in efficiency. In other words, the use of environmental rating systems and other mechanisms allows a reduction in the damage caused by excessive resource use. However, instead of doing less damage to the environment, it is necessary to learn how one can participate with the environment by using the health of ecological systems as a basis for design. The shift from a fragmented to a whole systems model is the significant cultural leap that consumer society needs to make - through framing and understanding living system interrelationships in an integrated way. A place-based approach is one way to achieve this understanding. The design process begins by attempting to understand how the systems of life work in each unique place. The role of designers and stakeholders is to create a whole system of mutually beneficial relationships. By doing so, the potential for green design moves beyond sustaining the environment to one that can regenerate its health - as well as our own."

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