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Inspiring young place-makers

Launched on 27 April at the national Place Alliance Big Meet 7 at UCL London, Generation Place demonstrates the importance of educating young people about place and the built environment. Nurturing the UK’s future professionals and citizens, the newly formed initiative seeks to inspire the next generation of creative place-makers who will make the kinds of places where people thrive.

Instigated by the architecture centres: Architecture Centre (Bristol), MADE and 22sheds with the support of the Ove Arup Foundation, Generation Place will involve organisations across the UK that specialise in educating young people about place. Building a national network of expertise, the initiative seeks to develop placemaking education across the country by bringing individual programmes, professionals and organisations from across disciplines together to share and encourage best practice.

On launching the initiative, Amy Harrison, Head of Learning & Participation, the Architecture Centre Bristol said: “The next generation are the future design professionals, city decision-makers, and active citizens of our cities. To ensure a liveable and vibrant future for our cities we need to engage these young people in placemaking today.”

Building a national network

Launched at the Place Alliance Big Meet 7, Generation Place forms the cornerstone of the Alliance’s newly formed Education & Place working group. Instigated by Generation Place, the Education & Place working group will take a broad view on how we inspire and nurture the next generation of place-makers and will be chaired (interim) by co-founder of Generation Place, Amy Harrison, Head of Learning & Participation at the Architecture Centre Bristol. The Place Alliance is a national movement campaigning for place quality.

Established in 2014, the Alliance champions collaboration and communication as the way to establish a culture whereby the quality of place becomes an everyday national and local priority. It is hosted by The Bartlett School of Planning at UCL. Valentina Giordano Managing Director, Place Alliance at UCL said;

Place is integral to all our lives and we’re delighted to be launching a new strand of the Place Alliance with a focus on Education, with the aim of inspiring the next generation of creative placemakers.”

By becoming a critial partner with the Place Alliance, Generation Place aims to develop a countrywide network promoting young people’s place-based learning.

Why Generation Place?

Using place as a context for learning, active citizenship and careers progression, Generation Place aims to make placemaking accessible to everyone and to offer opportunities to a diverse range of young people.  Positive impacts of Generation Place projects on young people include: employability and careers insights, inspiring political empowerment and active citizenship, and developing creativity, communication skills and confidence. Read more about the impact of Generation Place projects.

Generation Place projects can take many forms: from week-long summer academies, to careers focussed design challenges, one-to-one mentoring, to city expeditions for schools and community livebuild  projects with young people. Examples of Generation Place projects include Bristol Architecture Centre’s Shape My City, 22sheds Young Urbanists and MADE’s City Builder programmes. Find out more about the diversity of Generation Place projects.

Generation Place is also a response to numerous government mandates for children’s engagement with the built environment. Architecture is recognised by Arts Council England as a visual art and the 2016 Culture White Paper recognises Place and built heritage as an essential part of culture. The Henley Review of Cultural Education includes architecture,place and heritage and the DCMS-initiated Farrell Review highlights the value of children’s engagement with the built environment. Where the government talks, Generation Place delivers – providing on-the-ground, real-life place-making programmes with and for young people nationally.

A Generation Place project participant, aged 19 from Bristol says: “Shape My City (Bristol based Generation Place project) has changed my life and I am grateful for the doors it has helped open for me and others.”  

Source: Generation Place media release

About Generation Place 

Generation Place is instigated by a collective of not-for-profit organisations across the UK that specialise in cultural and place-based learning for young people aged 5-24 in formal and informal settings. Through Generation Place these organisations (Architecture Centre, 22shedsMADEBeamSPUD and PLACED) have pooled over 50 years’ of experience and developed an effective methodology to engage young people with place the built environment.

Generation Place seeks to develop place-making education across the country by connecting practitioners with schools, local authorities, community groups and private sector companies who wish to invest in children and their potential.

Photos: Generation Place

For more information about Generation Place click here

Author: Adrian Voce

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