S-Lab: Safe, Successful and Sustainable Laboratories
NEW - The 2013 S-Lab Awards are now open for applications, with a closing date of 11 February (previously 28 January). Details can be found in the Reports section. Many of the shortlisted applications will present at the 2013 S-Lab Conference - The Effective Laboratory (which is being held jointly with the technical support bodies EMU, IST, PTSE, UBMA and UCLAS) at the University of Liverpool June 18-19th. Further information and booking forms for the conference can be found on the Effective Lab website.
The first S-Lab Conference, The Effective Laboratory - Safe, Successful and Sustainable organised in association with the National HE STEM Programme, was held on 12-13 June 2012 at the National Science Learning Centre in York. It brought together key stakeholders in lab design, operation and use.
The winners of the 2012 S-Lab Awards scheme were announced at the Conference. The Awards aim to recognise good practice in lab design, operation and management in all sectors (and in lab-based teching and learning within educational institutions).
A full report of the results of the 2012 S-Lab Awards and conference is now available in the Reports section of this website.
The S-Lab programme aims to create more sustainable laboratories, and to raise sustainability awareness amongst lab-using staff and students (see the Overview section for more discussion of this). It was initially financed by the four UK higher education funding bodies (HEFCE, HEFCW, SFC and DELNI) but is now self-sustaining. It has three streams of work:
- Laboratory design (working in partnership with owners and suppliers, and in collaboration with the US Labs 21 initiative);
- Laboratory operation (working closely with lab managers and technicians);
- Laboratory users (working closely with staff and students).
S-Lab emphasises the synergies between safety, business success and sustainability rather than compartmentalising and/or seeing them as competing with each other. Although its centre of gravity is in universities, it also supports action in private and public sector laboratories, and is keen to build links with them.
Current S-Lab activities include:
- Running events to profile good practice, discuss key issues and develop networks;
- Laboratory Energy Audits - detailed audits to show where the energy in labs is going and identify improvement opportunities - this has been developed in conjuction with the Universities of Edinburgh, Liverpool, Manchester, York and Cambridge Universiies. The results are now available in the final report;