Shifting the wood narrative in SSA
Wood Architect Rockstars, Kenya
Wood Architect Rockstars is a Value Chain Alliance for the Climate Smart Forest Economy Program (CSFEP). Its aim is to change the perception of building with timber in East Africa. Due to the beneficial carbon sequestration, storage and substitution properties of the wood-timber lifecycle, our objective is to get sustainable timber to be the chosen building material of the growing housing market in East Africa. We ultimately aim for concrete and steel to be substituted out for sustainably grown, harvested and processed timber. The key problem we are tackling in East Africa is the widespread skepticism surrounding the use of timber for construction. When building, wood suffers from social stigma and a reputation for bad quality. Regulation is also undeveloped. The industry is also small – but it is developing.
Through two challenge-based programs; a Climathon and a Journey, we are working through CSFEP to get young, upcoming, and respected architects and bringing them together with other key players from across the nascent, sustainable timber industry in East Africa to flip the narrative. Through the programme, these Wood Architect Rockstars will push architectural fashion to become a physical, timber reality.
WOOD ARCHITECT ROCKSTARS' CARBON IMPACT ACROSS THE 3S FRAMEWORK
Carbon modelling for this BI is still ongoing; results coming soon
Influencing, through the Climathon in Nairobi, cultural barriers to timber in construction
Training and doing community development with the Journey - a 2-week training program to develop skills
Mobilizing through ecosystem building to create opportunities throughout the supply chain and seed action
WOOD ARCHITECT ROCKSTARS' ENVISIONED IMPACT
Supporting architects to unlock the ecosystem could provide a platform for change across the continent, and a new model for engagement for CSFEP. Connecting architects to the sustainable timber supply chain.
We will also be able to feed learnings back into CSFEP, understanding:
The role architects play in creating new narratives and developing trends
The efficacy of training in creating behaviour change
The opportunities and challenges for ecosystem building in Africa