It will be presented to a project that comes under the theme of sustainable design and innovation in the built environment from among the entrants at the Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition. The new award is a joint initiative of the Irish Architecture Foundation and Department of Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs.
The foundation is a not-for-profit organisation whose activities include a national “architects in schools” initiative working with transition-year students in subjects such as technology, science, art, and design and communication graphics. Architecture specialists visit schools to give young people first-hand experience of how buildings are designed — a process in which sustainable design and innovation play a growing role.
“The quality and sustainability of our built environment in the future will be in the hands of the young people of today. They are the future citizens, clients, policymakers and participants in shaping the built environment,” said the foundation’s director, Nathalie Weadick.
It is hoped the special award will help further raise awareness of the importance of architecture, design, and science, technology, engineering, and maths in second-level schools.
The winning project will be chosen from among 550 lined up for the Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition, which runs from next Thursday to Saturday.
As well as the judges who will be meeting all the students, around 50,000 visitors attend the RDS in Dublin each year to see the projects and various other attractions. The organisers have lined up side shows that include robots, space technology, mentalists and various other demonstrations and proponents of modern science and technology.
On Thursday afternoon, former Manchester United and England defender Rio Ferdinand will be among the line-up for an event designed to inspire young people from all walks of life to consider science and technology careers. His Rio Ferdinand Foundation aims to encourage teenagers to tap into their talents and reach their potential through education and employment.
Other participants include Williams Formula 1 Racing IT director Graeme Hackland and past young scientist winners and participants, among them 2007 winner Abdusalam Abubakar, and Duffily Bag founder Emily Duffy.