Greg Keeffe


With rising food prices, climate change and growing urban populations, how do we make sure we can continue to put food on our tables? The Biospheric Project, transforms a derelict mill on the banks of the River Irwell in Manchester into a thriving agricultural space. Part farm, part laboratory and part research centre, this disused industrial site has now become an centre for education, employment and innovative sustainable food development. From agroforestry to aquaponics the Biospheric Project brings research to life, exploring how experiments into food, technology and design can help forge a new way of urban living. The Biospheric Project has grown out of work conducted for MIF11’s Vertical Farm and The Biospheric Foundation’s own research, supported by partners including Manchester Metropolitan University and Queen’s University, Belfast.


Professor Greg Keeffe originally trained as an engineer and has 25 years experience in sustainability, energy use and its impact on the design of built form and urban space. Over the  years he has sought to develop a series of theoretical hypotheses about sustainability.  Most of his work comes out of a free-thinking open-ended discussion about how things should be. An award-winning urban designer his work with MacCreanor Lavington Architects for Nelson, UK was described by the Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment as ‘exemplary urbanism’. He is author of the book ‘Means Means Means’ and ‘Urban Evolutionary Morphology’ (forthcoming), which propounds that the city can be seen as a super-organism, which can be adapted through a series of synthetic, genetic manipulation.  Along with Vincent Walsh he directs The Biospheric Project, he is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, RIBA Competition-winner and currently is Professor Architecture and Construction Management at Queens University, Belfast, part of the School of Planning, Architecture and Civil Engineering.





Date of publication

Mon 2 Sep 2013