ROSS HARDING (AUS)
PRINCIPAL, FINDING INFINITY
Ross is a passionate, enthusiastic & creative engineer with a purpose. After living and working as a consultant in Sydney, Melbourne, London, Stockholm, Mexico & Berlin, he has helped to push the limits environmentally on some of the world's most advanced projects.
Finding Infinity, his firm, provides advice and cost/benefit analysis on architectural projects ranging from houses to citywide masterplans & ski resorts. His primary focus is on the financial viability and inevitability of self sufficient cities. Ross & his team work together with developers to demonstrate that we no longer need to make a negative impact on the environment to make a profit. Internationally recognised architecture firms include Foster + Partners, Ateliers Jean Nouvel, Adjaye Associates & Grimshaw Architects.
Acknowledging that the barriers to transform cities to become self-sufficient are as much about people as they are technology & finance, Ross started to focus on creative communications. Since then, Ross and his team have worked on creative initiatives ranging from solar powered events with Vivienne Westwood in London to film making with Design Hotels in Germany. Ross recently spoke at TEDxHamburg about the inevitability of self sufficient cities.
BREAK-OUT: 'SELF SUFFICIENT CITIES: A NEW NORMAL' (2019)
Our cities are rapidly changing. Over half of the world’s population currently live in cities, and by 2050 this will increase to two thirds of population. The united nations have announced that we need to halve carbon emission by 2030, and with exponential growth, this transformation will need to be driven by cities.
It’s inevitable that our cities are on the pathway to become self sufficient in terms of energy, water and waste. Change does not need to be difficult. This workshop explores 10 different solutions that have already been successfully implemented in multiple cities across the world. Known solutions prove that financial viability and technical feasibility are possible, the path to self sufficiency is profitable, and will pay for itself within ten years.
So what’s really holding us back? The diversion of responsibility across public sector, private sector and society. This is not one person’s or organisations’ responsibility. It is everyone’s problem to solve. How do we transition society into adopting and promoting these new systems and services? We make the solutions cultural.
‘A new normal’ calls on all designers and change makers across a wide range of industries to use culture drivers to fast track this change. The goal is to create an emotional connection between people and technology to accelerate the transition.
In the workshop we will pressure test how these solutions might actually play out in real life, by investigating key partnerships, value exchanges and service models, that can integrate with existing ways of life.
This workshop is one part in a series of events that aim to promote, influence and ultimately implement self sufficient cities around the globe. The relationships and connections made during the workshop will continue to accelerate the change. The time is now to rethink how our cities function, live and breathe.