Skills bootcamp in place-based decarbonisation

Place-based decarbonisation will be a key part of the net zero transition. Understand your role in bringing net zero to life in your community. Learn from our experts what place-based decarbonisation means for you and your organisation and visit leading demonstrator sites throughout the Midlands. Develop the confidence to lead on the transition and identify the co-benefits of action.

Duration: 12 weeks with three hour online sessions and three visits to leading place-based decarbonisation hubs in the Midlands.
Commencing: 8 January 2024

Cost: £360-£1,080, depending on the size of the organisation. This equates to 10%-30%, with the remainder being funded by the Department for Education 

Place-based decarbonisation enables the creation of tailored context specific solutions to the climate emergency. At the heart of place-based decarbonisation is net zero placemaking which requires systems change approaches involving collaboration across sectors including regulation, planning, housing, built environment, health and social care, construction, innovation and research and engagement with communities. This course is delivered in partnership between Keele University and the Sustainable Housing Action Partnership, expert practitioners in place-based decarbonisation to help you understand your role in this transition. Throughout this course learn what is required to drive place-based transformations and how to drive systemic change including: 

  • The need and (trend) for place-based, integrated solutions to net zero and wider sustainability challenges and approaches to ‘Net Zero Neighbourhoods’, ‘Smart Local Energy Systems’, and ‘Place-based decarbonisation’ approaches highlighting the necessary integration of different energy vectors and systems
  • Place-based decarbonisation as a complex ecosystem including issues of the built environment
  • Introduction to a systems perspective and the enablers that support effective place-based initiatives, such as skills, regulation, technology, demand/supply issues
  • Non-technical systemic barriers and challenges to place-based decarbonisation  
  • User-centric design and community engagement as a core component of place-based decarbonisation
  • The role of demand reduction through domestic retrofit aligned to energy infrastructure capacity investment
  • Data/survey and data management including digitalisation and digital data access; modelling; design; financing; dependencies on other sector activities for place-based approaches and retrofit
  • Regulatory frameworks, finance models and procurement
  • Different roles in place-based decarbonisation (the Councillor, the Planning Officer, the surveyor, the estate agent, the energy company etc)
  • Circular vs linear approaches
  • Individual and organisational action planning and development
  • Case studies and site visits illustrating aspects of the topic 

Study for the Place-Based Decarbonisation CPD will include 12 weeks of three hour live online sessions and additional asynchronous activities. In addition to this there will be three one day in person events across the West Midlands. 

Supported learning 

You will have access to a wide range of student support such as academic skills support, Keele University’s Careers and Employability Service, including 24/7 digital resources and Student Services, plus access to LinkedIn Learning to continue your professional development. You will continue to have support from our careers and employability service for three years after completing the Skills Bootcamp. 

We have produced an academic skills and personal learning toolkit to support you as a work- based learner. As part of this you will undertake a skills audit at the beginning of the Skills Bootcamp so you can identify your strengths and prioritise access to resources to support your specific areas of focus. 

There is additional support from our dedicated School and Faculty Student Experience Support Officers (SESOs) with the designated mature students SESO holding a specific remit for supporting our work-based learning community and, providing a direct contact link to support. 

Skills Bootcamps are part-funded by the Department for Education.  Employers are required to pay £360-£1,080, depending on the size of the organisation - this equates to 10%-30%, with the remainder being funded by the Department for Education.

To be eligible for the funding, learners should be in employment and should live in the wider West Midlands Combined Authority Region. Please feel free to get in touch to check your eligibility.

  • To be aged 19 or over.
  • To have the right to work in the UK.
  • To live in the West Midlands.
  • To meet residency requirements.
  • Unfortunately students are ineligible for the funded Skills Bootcamp.

Keele University has excellent sustainability credentials and was awarded Global Sustainability Institution of the Year 2021, International Green Gown Awards. Sustainability is central to our research, education, campus and operations and we are committed to embedding sustainability into everything we do.

Keele’s Smart Energy Network Demonstrator, HyDeploy and Low Carbon Generation Projects have all worked with the regional industry base to address climate action on the university campus as well as pass on knowledge and learning.

The Institute for Sustainable Futures (ISF) launched at Keele in 2018, bringing together sustainability expertise across the university from all disciplines working closely with non-academic partners to tackle solutions to real sustainability challenges, and integrates research, education and practice activities. 

The CPD on this Skills Bootcamp is also informed by Keele University’s research and development experience drawing upon nationally-leading research such as Smart Local Energy System design through the InnovateUK funded Zero Carbon Rugeley, the gas industry-led HyDeploy hydrogen blending project, and Europe's largest Smart Energy Network Demonstrator and integrated Low Carbon Energy Generation park at Keele University, all working closely with industrial partners.

SHAP expertise 

The Sustainable Housing Action Partnership (SHAP) was set up by Sustainability West Midlands with regional development agency funding in 2005 to develop a best practice hub for existing and new low carbon housing in sustainable places.  SHAP draws on a network of housing/placemaking organizations including local authorities, social housing providers, and construction companies for evidence of current issues and innovative solutions in the low carbon housing and placemaking sectors.   

SHAP brings technical expertise on low carbon housing, urban design and net zero neighbourhood planning. SHAPs team includes experts on placemaking, smart energy systems, circular economy, modelling and forecasting, retrofit, and finance. Over the past few years, SHAP has completed projects developing sustainable housing knowledge and insight with Innovate UK, Local Government Association (LGA), West Midlands Combined Authority, West Yorkshire Combined Authority and EEM.

"I loved the format of a two-hour taught session each week with the flexibility to do additional study. I also really enjoyed the two face-to-face days on campus at Keele University. I learned so much, and things that related to my personal life as well as business. It has changed my outlook and helped me focus on small changes that make big differences that I’m now imparting on my family and colleagues.

"I am sharing my new knowledge on Carbon Net Zero and Smart Energy options as we work to deliver the pipeline which includes new Rollercoasters, some smaller rides, new and rethemed Indoor immersive attractions, waterparks, hotels, Sealife Centres, to name a few.”

Merlin Entertainment

"The course has really helped me clarify what needs to be done to reach net zero and helped answer some of the challenging questions which we are now being asked as an organisation.  This is particularly important for TMT First in our mission to be industry leaders in sustainability.

"I have put my newfound knowledge to good use to aid in the development of our organisation’s net zero strategy more broadly.  I’ve also gained insight as to how we as a company can reduce our impact going forwards and have a range of ideas which we could take forward to make a difference on our organisational emissions."

TMT First

"The training was detailed without being overwhelming, and helped me build a good base to work on climate related issues moving forward. It was tangible and digestible, whilst also broadening my knowledge. I learnt a lot and now know where to find the right tools and resources to work towards change."

BBC Radio Producer

"The training really helped in my overall understanding in the areas of Smart Energy and Net Zero and gave me more confidence in expressing my views and findings to colleagues at all levels of my organisation."

Johnsons Tiles

"I found it easy to follow your brilliant online sessions and enjoyed the Breakout Room chats / listening to others and what they are doing for their organisations. And found the online Keele Learning Environment so convenient and the knowledge was easily accessible - I was so glad that recordings were uploaded for me to revisit all that knowledge.  I was glad of the 2 days in-person training as well at the University.  It was wonderful to actually see the great energy solutions actually reducing carbon emissions and greenhouse gases in real time, and in a real working life Environment, so great to hear about other examples actually already implemented and working for whole UK."

Local business

Skills for Life Skills Bootcamp logo Skills Bootcamps are part of the Government’s Lifetime Skills Guarantee, helping everyone gain skills for life.

They are part-funded, flexible courses of up to 16 weeks, giving people the opportunity to build up sector-specific skills and fast-track to an interview with a local employer.

Skills Bootcamps are part-funded by the Department for Education.  Organisations will be required to fund between 10%-30% of the cost, depending on their size.