The GeM Award: A scholarship for students of conservation architecture

The Programme

The programme is designed with a degree of flexibility to maximise available opportunities.

The GeM scholarship 2024 programme will run from the 8th of August to the 29th of October

In line with the UK immigration rules, there will be an offer of:

  • 30 working days of recreational study that will be spent in the company of Conservation Architects, Engineers, Planners, Archaeologist, in their offices or following them during site visits.
  • 30 working days of voluntary activities that will be spent in SPAB working parties, or architectural work in conservation to support other charities projects.


Accommodation in London will be provided for the scholar as part of the Award.

The working party will provide camping facilities.

For the rest of the time the GeM Charity will help in finding an accommodation and will cover its costs.


The day to day running of the programme is the responsibility of the GeM Award co-ordinators, Lisa Charlish and Laura Morgante, with whom the Scholar have regular contact in order to organise, discuss and provide feedback over past and future visits.

Within the PBA practice the Scholar can rely always on a friendly environment. For this year the mentors will be Architect Oliver Burgess and Architectural Assistant Catalina Stroe.

Overall control of the programme lies with PBA and the GeM Steering Group.

Terms of Acceptance

Before accepting an their GeM scholarship, candidates should be aware of the following

requirements and confirm that they would be prepared to comply with them all upon accepting a GeM Award offer.


The GeM Award Scholar is expected to attend all programmed activities unless unforeseen circumstances dictate otherwise. In these instances, they must notify PBA & the planned host at the earliest possible opportunity and request permission for absence.

Failure to notify or not turn up at visits may result in a written warning and the pro rata forfeiture of the The GeM Award bursary (in the region of £45/day).

PBA must be notified, prior to your acceptance of the GeM Award offer, of all known commitments during the programme period.

Pre-existing commitments may incur the bursary forfeiture above.

Disciplinary procedures

The SPAB’s Misconduct Guidelines have been adopted by the GeM Award. Whilst the GeM Scholar is not engaged by the SPAB she/he will be expected to abide by the spirit of these guidelines. Should behaviour (for example: lateness or poor timekeeping / swearing or abusive language / lack of application) be exhibited such that after a written warning further consultation is needed, then the GeM Scholar will be in jeopardy of losing his/her place on the programme.


In relation with the restriction related to the departure of UK from the European Union. The GeM charity will not be responsible for any activities beyond the planned and described activities included in this year scholarship and described in the present information pack. No paid work whatsoever may be undertaken during the GeM programme period.

Health & Safety

In relation with the restriction related to the departure of UK from the European Union. The GeM scholar has to bring:

  • Her/His passport, identity Card are not accepted anymore and
  • a valid European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) with them.

Further obligations

It is an expectation of the GeM Award that The Scholar will continue their involvement with the award after completion of the programme and it is a requirement that the GeM Scholar submits a bound extract of their notebook for retention in the GeM Award archive.

In addition to the above terms, by accepting a GeM Award offer the candidate agrees to the following obligations:

  • to act politely and in a manner befitting a GeM Scholar at all times and to write a letter of thanks to each of their hosts,
  • to keep a sketch book journal of their activities with notes in Italian and/or English, a selection of which she/he will copy and bind for the GeM archive by the end of the programme.
  • to contribute to a GeM Award News page and PBA Twitter/Instagram
  • to make a presentation to next year’s applicants, to be held at the IUAV
  • to give time, during and after the programme, towards promoting the GeM Award in the UK and Italy.