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Earth to Shelter A Masterclass on the Science of Mud Buildings with Yask Kulshreshtha

Tiny Farm Friends Ep. 19



People in rural India live in mud houses made from clay, sand, and silt. Unfortunately, these houses are not well designed and hence aren't fully water-resistant, and each rainy season necessitates re-plastering the walls.


Surprisingly, there's no affordable alternative available at the moment.


Our guest today hopes to see this change.


Meet Yask Kulshreshtha.

He is the founder of muddled studio. He is a scientific researcher in the field of sustainable construction material.

Yask believes that the lack of water resistance of the mud houses is primarily a technical issue.


He also believes The local ‘recipe’ should not be patented for monetary benefit. ‘Usually families build their own houses, or they employ a local building contractor. Everything is local. They would not want to pay someone from outside of the village who is earning money from their house because of a patent’.

" It literally is the ‘shit that matters."

Images Courtesy: Yask Kulshreshtha Yask embarked on a nine-month journey across India before starting his project.


His PhD thesis at TU Delft, Netherlands, titled "Building affordable, durable, and desirable earthen houses," forms the foundation of his work.



Yask's research addresses the main challenges in rural earthen housing in India: affordability, durability, and desirability.


He aims to develop a low-cost, water-resistant, and aesthetically pleasing earthen building material.


In our discussion, we explore the biggest misconceptions surrounding mud houses. Yask sheds light on these misconceptions, revealing a world of possibilities.


We also tackle the issue of durability, discussing the challenges faced by mud houses and the potential solutions that could transform their longevity.


Yask shares the driving force behind his passion for mud construction and provides an insightful overview of his groundbreaking thesis.


We compare cement and lime in sustainable construction materials takes center stage in our conversation. Furthermore, we delve into the role of stabilizers in enhancing the quality of earthen building materials, opening up new possibilities.


Shifting gears, we discuss the advantages of pursuing higher education in the Netherlands, a perspective shared by Yask.


What You'll Learn:


🌱 Science behind mud buildings

🌱 Why mud buildings are better for your health

🌱 Innovative Solutions to develop affordable, water-resistant earthen building materials.

🌱 Explore the choice between cement and lime in sustainable construction materials and the role of stabilizers.


Join us in this informative and inspiring conversation with Yask Kulshreshtha as we explore the journey to building a more sustainable and affordable future for rural India. You can watch it on Youtube or stream it on Apple, Spotify, or your favorite platform. You can reach out to Yask on the following link: ​https://www.linkedin.com/in/yaskkulshreshtha?originalSubdomain=in





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