James was awarded the 2009 Boyd Auger Scholarship to support a 12-month post-Part 1 professional placement at Arup & Partners in Shenzhen, China. James worked alongside a team of Chinese-registered architects on a variety of projects of different scales, including the Guangzhou TV Tower South Plaza and an urban design and town planning project for Guizhou province. James also completed a Postgraduate Diploma in Madarin and travelled extensively across the region during his 12-month placement.
James describes his experience of the RIBA Boyd Auger Scholarship:
'The original objectives outlined in my application included gaining valuable project experience and improved cultural awareness in the Chinese context. I feel both of these were fulfilled during my time in Shenzhen, although I recognise that my experiences are somewhat skewed due to the fact that I was employed by an international company, and had many opportunities thrust upon me that my Chinese colleagues did not while I was in the office.
I also became acutely aware of the lack of time I had, what with a 50-hour working week and evening language classes. Although I did initially try to keep a regular blog, it soon became apparent that this was over-ambitious, particularly due to the fact that there was limited internet access in the workplace.
If I were to give advice to any future recipient of the RIBA Boyd Auger Award, it would be, particularly if they are to be on a placement as opposed to a research trip, that they must be realistic as to their time constraints and ability to disseminate information while on the placement.'
His full report can be downloaded below.
James Patterson-Waterston holds a First Class Honours degree in Architecture from the University of Liverpool and an MSc in Construction Economics and Management at the Bartlett School of Architecture. He is currently undertaking an MPhil in Environmental Design in Architecture at the University of Cambridge, and is continuing to specialise in the sustainable design of cities in the developing world. He hopes to move to Hong Kong upon completing his degree course in summer 2012. James is a Fellow of the Royal Asiatic Society and a member of the Royal Society of Asian Affairs.