New York, NY (PRWEB) July 29, 2009 — Spark Design & Architecture Awards is extending its role in the booming Chinese design industry through SparkChina. These new awards will help Chinese creative teams raise their profile globally.
The Spark Awards is open to global entries from design, advertising and media agencies, students and commissioning clients until 15th September (early entry discount applies until 15th August). In addition to the global Spark Awards site at www.sparkawards.com. a new dedicated Chinese language website now provides information to ease design entry submissions at http://www.sparkawards.cn
University of Guelph reports
It will now be possible to genetically differentiate the more than 400,000 species of land plants in the world thanks to DNA barcoding, a revolutionary technique invented at the University of Guelph.
An international team of 52 scientists – including seven from U of G – has concluded a four-year effort to find a standard “plant DNA barcode.” Their findings appear in this week’s Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, one of the world’s most-cited multidisciplinary scientific serials.
The research involved scientists from 10 countries. Significant elements of data gathering and analysis were conducted at the Canadian Centre for DNA Barcoding (CCDB), which is based at U of G’s Biodiversity Institute of Ontario.
Peter Hollingsworth, head of genetics and conservation at the Royal Botanic Garden in Edinburgh who led the international research team, added: “Identification is important. It’s not possible to know if a plant is common or rare, poisonous or edible, being traded legally or illegally etc., unless it can be identified. But identification can be difficult: there are a large number of plant species and some look very similar.”
Other universities involved in the study are: the University of British Columbia, University of Toronto, University of Johannesburg, Korea University, Universidade Estadual de Feira de Santana, Universidad de Costa Rica, Columbus State University, University of Wisconsin, Universidad de los Andes Aberystwyth University, University of Cape Town, Hallym University, Seoul National University, University of Copenhagen, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México and Imperial College London. Agencies that participated in the research include the National Center for Biotechnology Information, the Smithsonian Institution, the Natural History Museum in London, the South African National Biodiversity Institute, the Natural History Museum of Denmark and the New York Botanical Garden.
SOURCE: University of Guelph – Scientists help find Plant DNA code
Adrian Higgins of the washingtonpost.com has written a great article about Dan Hinkley a plant explorer travelling around Asia collecting plant species.
Hinkley, 55, has spent two decades retracing the steps of such legendary plant explorers as Robert Fortune (1812-80), Jean Marie Delavay (1834-95), Armand David (1826-1900), Ernest “Chinese” Wilson (1876-1930) and George Forrest (1873-1932).
Theirs may have been the golden age of Asian plant collection, but the spirit of the period is very much alive among a handful of 21st-century collectors such as Hinkley. His work may take decades more to flower in western gardens, but the tradition, the impulse to brighten our lives with fantastic Asian plants, persists.
read the full article @ the SOURCE: washingtonpost.com – A Plant Explorer Brings Asian Varieties to the West
SWA Group has won a design competition to provide master planning and landscape architecture improving sustainability for the 247-acre (100-hectare) campus of the University of Monterrey, Monterrey, Mexico. The assignment includes a phase-one implementation of site design for the Art and Design School Building under construction by noted architect Tadao Ando, the 1995 winner of the Pritzker Prize.
SWA’s assignment for the University of Monterrey (UDEM), Mexico’s premier institution of higher education, will help transform the campus from a vehicular orientation to one that encourages pedestrian, bicycle and transit use. The master plan will also incorporate greater sustainability by use of indigenous plant materials, natural water-retention and filtration, low maintenance landscaping as well as site-design strategies to enhance the learning and collaboration among students and faculty.
Tadao Ando’s structure, called the Gate of Creation, is a $34.5 million project encompassing 94,000 square feet (8,719 square meters), with spaces for design, research, teaching and exhibition, as well as 22 laboratories and workshops. According to the university, the building will help it establish Mexico and Latin America as a leader in the education of art, architecture and design.
“The landscape architecture and site design effort for UDEM is both a challenge and an honor that we are thrilled to be undertaking,” said Rene Bihan, SWA’s San Francisco-based managing principal overseeing the design team. “We will be working with the architect and the university to provide a proper landscape backdrop to what is considered one of the most significant architectural buildings in all of Latin America, while also helping the university move its campus to a higher level of sustainability.”
Science Daily reports
New research shows that 21st century British woodlands are less distinctive than those of the early 20th century due to environmental change. Native woodland plants have re-organised over the last 70 years in response to increased soil fertility and loss of light related to increased canopy shading.
SOURCE: Science Daily – Woodlands Suffer Large-scale Biodiversity Loss
Bournemouth University. “Woodlands Suffer Large-scale Biodiversity Loss.” ScienceDaily 21 July 2009.
25 July 2009 <http://www.sciencedaily.com /releases/2009/07/090722083727.htm>