New president calls on CIBSE to adapt to change

Stephen Lisk, incoming President, has made a resounding call for CIBSE to accelerate its evolution in response to a rapidly changing world.

Lisk’s Presidential address focussed on the pace of change within the natural world as well as the construction sector and the regulatory climate in which it operates: it stressed the vital importance of education and expert guidance to ensure that the built environment provides positive spaces for living and working into the future.

A major theme for Lisk’s year in office will be the importance of collaboration between all the professionals whose experience should influence the design of buildings. It is an appropriate focus for a non-engineer – Lisk is a ‘lighter’– leading an institution with engineering at its heart.

It is in such collaboration that Lisk sees the value and relevance of a professional organisation such as CIBSE: constructive debate between like-minded profession producing the most comprehensive and practical solutions to building design challenges.

Of course there is little point in producing expert commentary without also communicating it to the widest possible audience. On this subject Lisk commended the CIBSE Knowledge Portal and Build2Perform Live as excellent examples of initiatives that increase accessibility and fulfil the Institution’s aim of sharing its knowledge to the benefit of all.

The speech committed to continue and accelerate the pace of change within CIBSE with the objective of building “a virtuous circle of competency”. Members and, critically, the huge number of participants in CIBSE’s special interest groups who are not CIBSE members, should be prepared for some radical new thinking in the way CIBSE engages with and consults its unique corps of expert contributors.

Stephen Lisk has some 30 years’ experience in the lighting sector. Originally from New Zealand (where he used the CIBSE Lighting Guide as his reference), Stephen immigrated to the UK in 1999 to work in the lighting industry, ultimately establishing his Bristol-based lighting studio One Eight Light.  He is a past President of the Society of Lighting and Lighting, of which he has been a member for approaching twenty years.

Stephen Lisk succeeds Peter Wong as CIBSE President and will, in turn, be succeeded by Professor Lynne Jack, Director of Heriot-Watt University’s Royal Academy of Engineering Centre of Excellence in Sustainable Building Design, who will be supporting Lisk in her capacity of President-Elect during the coming year.