IMPORTANT Website terms of use and cookie statement

RIBA Scott Brownrigg Award for Sustainable Development

We are now accepting applications for the RIBA Scott Brownrigg Award for Sustainable Development.

Launched in 2022 as a collaboration between RIBA and Scott Brownrigg, the RIBA Scott Brownrigg Award for Sustainable Development funds research to address environmental and ethical issues and enhance the quality of life of communities across the globe. It offers £10,000 to individuals or teams interested in developing research projects or practical work in architecture-related topics associated with one or more of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations Global Compact:

Goal 01: No Poverty

Goal 02: Zero Hunger

Goal 03: Good Health and Well-Being

Goal 04: Quality Education

Goal 05: Gender Equality

Goal 06: Clean Water and Sanitation

Goal 07: Affordable and Clean Energy

Goal 08: Decent Work and Economic Growth

Goal 09: Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure

Goal 10: Reduced Inequality

Goal 11: Sustainable Cities and Communities

Goal 12: Responsible Consumption and Production

Goal 13: Climate Action

Goal 14: Life Below Water

Goal 15: Life on Land

Goal 16: Peace, Justice, and Strong Institutions

Goal 17: Partnerships to Achieve the Goal

The scheme intends to focus on developing the skills and competencies of the successful applicants and on generating practical solutions or considered recommendations that improve the physical environment and enhance the quality of life of citizens and communities.

The award is open to individuals or teams of architecture graduates and practitioners for projects lasting between three and 12 months.

Eligibility criteria

The award is open to individuals or teams of architecture students, graduates, academics and qualified architects who have obtained a professional qualification in architecture in higher education institutions that offer courses validated by the RIBA in the UK or abroad.

To be eligible to apply for the award, the sole or lead applicant must:

  • have successfully completed a RIBA-validated Part 1 course or with candidate course status in the UK or abroad, and
  • be enrolled, or have been granted a place of study, in a RIBA-validated Part 2 or 3 course or with candidate course status in the UK or abroad by the beginning of the period covered by the award, or
  • have graduated from a RIBA-validated Part 2 or 3 course or with candidate course status in the UK or abroad

Selection criteria

Applications are assessed against evidence of the following criteria:

  • relevance and originality of the research topic
  • the maximum potential for the research output to advance the United Nations Global Compact Sustainable Development Goals
  • the candidate’(s’) research ability, and their academic or professional competency in the field proposed
  • thorough project planning, particularly regarding implementation of realistic time frames, and effective budget and resource management
  • details of how the applicant(s) will benefit personally and professionally from the experience
  • explanation of what the benefits of the research are to the architectural profession, as well as to the communities and individuals directly affected by the intended outputs of the research

How to apply

Please read the guidance notes (PDF) in full before submitting your online application. These guidance notes contain important details about the information you need to provide in the online form.

Access the online application form

You will need to follow the instructions to register for an account first, and then select the ‘RIBA Scott Brownrigg Award for Sustainable Development 2024’ form to begin your application for this award. You will receive an automatic email notification upon submission of your application.

The deadline for applications is 3pm (BST) Monday 1 July 2024. Applications will not be accepted after this time.

If you have any issues with the online application form, please email

2022 winners clockwise from top left: Ben Hayes, Dr Josephine Mwongeli Malonza, Julia Backhaus, and Kit Lee-Smith.

2022 winners

We are pleased to announce four winners of the inaugural RIBA Scott Brownrigg Award for Sustainable Development. The winning project – ‘Co-Designing the Rwanda Model Village’ was submitted by the following group of researchers:

  • Ben Hayes: Co-founder and Director, Unknown Works; Lecturer at The Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL
  • Dr Josephine Mwongeli Malonza: Founding Dean - Faculty of Architecture and Environmental Design FAED, College of Science and Technology, University of Rwanda
  • Kit Lee-Smith (lead): MArch graduate, The Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL
  • Julia Backhaus: Founding Director Flux Architects; Associate Professor at The Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL; Co-founder and Board member of the Rwanda Heart Care and Research

In response to Rwanda’s City of Kigali 2050 Masterplan and the expansion of rural development, this project will focus on the growth of the model village programme, examining the limitations and possibilities of this new housing prototype in relation to the local construction material cycles.

The project aims to develop a toolbox encompassing different strategies for a socially and environmentally sustainable village model for Rwanda, providing a backbone for both local communities and future research to build on.

Working collaboratively with the School of Architecture and the Built Environment (SABE) at the University of Rwanda, this project will tackle the global climate emergency by developing a platform for mutually beneficial North/South research conversations that can lead to real impact.

Applications were reviewed by a judging panel comprising:

  • Mhairi McVicar, Professor of Architecture at Cardiff University (Chair)
  • Simon Allford, RIBA President
  • Mario Vieira, Head of Sustainability at Scott Brownrigg
  • Gregory Baker, CEO and Founder at Ese Capital
  • Laura Evans, Senior Lecturer of Architecture at Kingston University
  • Rajat Gupta, Professor of Sustainable Architecture and Climate Change at Oxford Brookes University
  • Mina Hasman, Sustainable Practice Director at Skidmore, Owings & Merrill


If you have any questions about this award please contact us at

keyboard_arrow_up To top