Material Matters Conference - 2-3 April 2012, London


Profile: Mike Davies

Mike Davies is an architect, master planner and senior partner in Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners.

He was a founder member of Chrysalis, a lightweight structures design firm in California in the late 60s. He led teams on the Pompidou Centre in Paris, Lloyds of London and led the design teams for the Millennium Dome and Terminal 5 at Heathrow. He has led masterplans for the Royal Docks, City of Dunkirk, the Greenwich Peninsula, the Lower East River for the City of New York and Wood Wharf – the extension of Canary Wharf. He currently leads the team for the Grand Paris masterplan, a direct commission from the President of France.

Mike is a lifelong astronomer and informal scientist. He is a fellow of the Royal Astronomical Society, the Royal Geographical Society, a fellow for the Royal Society of the Arts, holds a CBE and is a Chevalier of the Legion d’Honneur.

Plenary: Towards Molytecture

The first industrial revolution, the age of iron,   steel and the mechanical world, transformed our buildings,  engineering and technology. It was a dramatic change at large physical scale, brought about by the development of new materials.

The second industrial revolution, the age of  information technology spread explosively,, transforming our lifestyles,  connectivity, awareness and our access to knowledge. This was a revolution at smaller physical scale, the scale of the circuit, the microchip, – smaller scale but with greater human impact.

The third industrial revolution, is now upon us –  at even smaller physical scale, the scale of the virtually invisible, – the scale of chemical and  biological reactions, at the scale of Nanotechnology.

We have moved from megascale, through micro scale, to the scale of the molecule, the chemistry of interactivity and of life itself.

This biochemical revolution  will, despite, and perhaps because of its minute scale, pervade and radically change our everyday world.