EARLIER THIS YEAR, the Max Lock Centre completed its Global Challenges Research Fund-sponsored study exploring the experience of the COVID-19 pandemic from an international urban planning, design and environmental science perspective. A team of researchers, graduates from our postgraduate international planning and urban design programmes, carried out city-based case studies across the globe, from Port Moresby (Papua New Guinea) and Manila (Philippines), though New Delhi and Bangalore (both India) in Asia, to L’Aquila (Italy) and Greenwich (UK) in Europe and Tegucigalpa (Honduras) and Buenos Aires (Argentina) in the Americas.
Efforts to extend the School’s expertise in environmental, urban and housing design to the South East Asian context resulted in an MLC-led bid to study energy efficiency in housing construction and occupation in urbanising Indonesia, with academic partners from Indonesia, the Netherlands and Singapore. The Centre also engaged with other colleagues from the Emerging Territories Research Group in advising the London Borough of Hounslow with the development of their Future Cities Neighbourhood 2030 Strategy and Action Plan, drawing on its earlier study of retrofitting strategies for the central London district of Soho.
The Centre has lost one of its founders, the late Dr Mike Theis, who sadly died after a short illness at the age of 95. Active until almost the end, Mike was a continuous inspiration to all those who worked with him including the dozens of young professionals he supported and mentored during the many decades he spent in the field directing operations in surveys and associated urban and regional planning studies across Nigeria.