Spring 2024 Living Futures:
Regenerative Environmental Design Decal (1 Unit)


Welcome to the Living Futures: Regenerative Environmental Design Decal. This solutions-based course will use the seven petals of the Living Building Challenge and the Living Community Challenge as a guide to envision a future that is socially just, culturally rich, and ecologically restorative. 


Green building and urbanism have seen huge advances over the last thirty years, yet the climate is reaching a point where we will all experience catastrophic and irreversible changes to the health of our planet within this decade. Considering the rate of change required to avoid the worst effects of the climate crisis and other global socio-environmental challenges, our progress can no longer be incremental. The Living Future framework, created by the International Living Future Institute, radically transforms the paradigm of design from one of doing less harm to one of actively doing good for the world.

We will discuss bold methods for going beyond sustainability, looking at topics such as urban agriculture, net-positive design, healthy and happy neighborhoods, universal inclusion, and biophilia. With a climate justice lens, we will also examine case studies of regenerative design beyond the Global North. Within this decade, humanity must reshape its relationship with nature and realign its ecological footprint to be within the planet’s carrying capacity. This course is an act of optimism and believes that with the right wisdom and tools in the hands of passionate, sensitive individuals, a revolutionary transformation is possible.

This course is offered as Pass/No Pass. There will be no exams. Requirements for a passing grade are as follows:

– Have no more than 2 absences.

– Participate in 7 out of 11 weekly bCourses discussions in a timely manner.

– Submit the final project on time with all required elements.


Attendance is required for students without DSP-approved accommodations and will be taken at the start of every class. Students are expected to be engaged and attentive during class. Since this is a fast-paced course, only two absences will be allowed. All missed material and work must be made up.


A basic understanding of contemporary socio-environmental challenges and environmental design is helpful but not a prerequisite.

Method of Instruction

This course will be conducted in person. Most class sessions will consist of a lecture on the day’s topic, a class discussion or topical activity, and structured time to work on final projects.

  1. Become familiar with the Living Building Challenge, the Living Community Challenge, their petals, and their imperatives.
  2. Develop the ability to critically think and design beyond sustainability and instead opt for regeneration.
  3. Recognize the need for socio-ecological justice and community participation at the core of every design decision.
  4. Demonstrate an understanding of how to radically transform the way we create the built environment to benefit the health, safety, and welfare of all people and beings.
  5. Gain the ability to reconcile with the natural and built environment in daily life and inspire others to do so as well through environmental hope.

SHAC is an interdisciplinary group of undergraduate and graduate students at UC Berkeley with a shared passion for sustainability in the built environment.

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