The Architecture Days 2020 – Alison Brooks as keynote speaker – the event has been cancelled

Alison Brooks.
Alison Brooks. Picture: Mark Hadden.

The Architecture Days 2020 have been cancelled due to the coronavirus!


The annual architectural seminar would have been held in Turku on 8 May 2020. The main seminar and evening reception would have taken place at Logomo in Turku city centre.

The theme of the seminar – Futurespect – invites exploration of the future of architecture from the perspectives of digital tools, changes in housing trends and sustainable development.

Alison Brooks – one of the leading architects of her generation

Alison Brooks graduated as an architect from the University of Waterloo in her native Canada, and has headed her practice Alison Brooks Architects in London since 1996. Her work has attracted international acclaim for its quality and ingenious detailing.

Alison Brooks’ architectural approach emerges from broad research into the social, cultural and physical characteristics of the place. Her goal is to create architecture with unique identity that expresses a specific response to the environment and landscape.  Brooks’ practice has developed an international reputation especially for its pioneering wood architecture.  The main projects of Alison Brooks Architects include Ely Court (London), which was a finalist for the Mies van der Rohe Award; the development of the University of Northampton campus; and the Smile (London), a 34-metre-long tubular pavilion that explored the potential of CLT panels.

Brooks is the only British architect to have won all three of the UK’s most prestigious awards for architecture: the RIBA Stirling Prize, Manser Medal and Stephen Lawrence Prize. In 2014, The Sunday Times included Brooks on its Britain’s 500 Most Influential list.

Brooks is a member of the Good Growth by Design panel appointed by the Mayor of London and has served in the RIBA Awards group, where she was juror for the 2011 Stirling Prize and 2010 Lubetkin Prize. Alison Brooks has also taught at the Architectural Association School of Architecture and served as External Examiner at the universities of Bath and Lincoln and Bartlett School of Architecture. Brooks lectures actively around the world on architecture and urbanism.

Arto Kiviniemi – a pioneer in building information modelling

Arto Kiviniemi.

Since the 1990s, Arto Kiviniemi has been a pioneer and leading expert in building information modelling. After graduating from Helsinki School of Technology, Kiviniemi completed his doctorate at the Stanford University’s Department of Civil and Environmental in California, US. In 2018, he retired as professor at the University of Liverpool.

Kiviniemi led Tekes’ Vera (Information Networking in the Construction Process) programme, as a result of which Finland was among the first countries to introduce of building information modelling as a practice. In the 2010s, Kiviniemi initiated the UK’s first Master’s programme in building information modelling at the University of Salford. He has participated in several advisory groups for the UK government in introducing statutory building information modelling regulations in public procurement in 2016. Kiviniemi continues to serve as an expert advisor for the Centre of Digital Build Britain and in the development of information modelling regulations in Poland.

Internationally Kiviniemi’s main activities have been related to the buildingSMART International, where he has served Chairman of the International Council and Executive Committee and the International Technical Management Committee, and more recently as a member of the International Technical Advisory Group. During his career, Kiviniemi has received several international and national awards, the most recent ones being the UK Open BIM Award and European BIM Summit Award in 2019. Kiviniemi is still a sought-after lecturer, having presented over 180 keynote and invited lectures in international seminars and conferences around the world.

Sofie Pelsmakers – an expert of sustainable architecture

Sofie Pelsmakers.
Sofie Pelsmakers.

The Belgian-born RIBA architect Sofie Pelsmakers has built her strong experience through practice and by teaching at universities in the UK and Denmark (University of East London, the Bartlett and Sheffield School of Architecture; Aarhus School of Architecture). She is currently serving as Assistant Professor (tenure track) of Sustainable Architecture & Housing Design at the University of Tampere, where she also chairs ASUTUT – Sustainable Housing Design research group.

Her passion is for architectural teaching, practice and research that makes a difference and responds to current societal and environmental challenges. In her view, architects and teachers play a crucial role in responding to the climate emergency. She is particularly interested in how buildings and spaces work in reality, and how architecture exists and changes over time. She contributes to several research projects within her expertise.

She has over 15 years of experience in designing, building and teaching sustainable architecture. Her specialty is low energy, affordable housing design and housing retrofit. Her goal is to bridge the information gap between research and its applications in architectural practice.

Pelsmakers is a prolific writer and her publications include Environmental Design Pocketbook (2012), People, Energy, Buildings – Architecture for a Changing World (forthcoming 2021) and Climate Emergency Curriculum for Architecture Students (forthcoming 2021). Pelsmakers’ several professional merits include: Bartlett PhD Alumni Role model (2017), RIBA Role Model (2015) ja 1 of 20 women influencing sustainability in architecture (Architects Journal, 2013). She has also won commendations for her book Environmental Design Pocketbook (RIBA, President’s medal for practice-based research, 2012 and UKGBC Rising Star Award, 2013).