Symposium Arquitectonics mind, land and society 2018
Looking for the human condition of architectural and urban design research practices and theories
First call for papers
COAC. Catalan Association of Architects.
UPC Research Group GIRAS. Magda Saura, Josep Muntañola
ETSAB-UPC. Jordi Ros. Director
UIC Research group Genetic Architectures. Alberto Estevez
Main General Theoretical Frame
The new human conditions of the architectural and urban research, around the world, are defined by three epistemological general gaps, all of them related to any design process of today:
First, the gap between the biological and the neurological foundations of our architectural and urban experiences, on the one hand, and the architectural and urban theories and practices involved in our cities and buildings, on the other hand. So, this is the gap between knowledge and experience in our body.
Second, the gap between what buildings and cities represent and their geographic and historical contextual reality. So, this is the gap between representation and reality, both at individual and at social levels.
Third, the gap between the experience and knowledge of one person, and the experience and knowledge of another person. So, this is the gap between the psychological and the sociological dimensions of architecture and urban planning, and involves urban history and the social participation in planning.
These three EPISTEMOLOGICAL GAPS are not mistakes or limitations of our human condition, on the contrary, they configure the human conditions needed in order to develop new research today, thanks to the FEEDBACK between knowledge and the brain (so the MIND), representation and reality (so the LAND) and my life and the life of others (so the SOCIETY).They are the three chronotopic and existential human life conditions defined by Mikhail Bakhtin in 1973, some months before he died in 1974.
These three feedbacks generate, simultaneously, the three main human life cultural dimensions, that is, the scientific, the aesthetic and the ethical-political dimensions. Tied together, also in a chronotopic way, these three dimensions can produce knowledge thanks the interaction between virtuality and real social experience.
The nine topics of this symposium want to analyze these chronotopic human conditions in the architectural and urban design theories and practices of today. Three related to education, three related to the production of architecture and three related to the social participation in planning.
PhD students, Master students and professors of PhD programs and Master programs from all disciplines and universities, are welcomed.
The nine topics of the conference
Each topic can be organized into two sessions, one about the general dimensions of it and another pointing to some key aspects of it, as biogenesis, local versus global architecture,
museums and cities, etc.
1) TEACHING ARCHITECTURE AND URBAN EDUCATION TO CHILDREN
What are the best pedagogies for the involvement of architecture in education, besides
mathematics, history, etc.? What kind of interdisciplinarity is needed? What about the political
implications of the spatial dimensions of architecture and urban planning in children education?
What about the spatial dimensions of the new experiential education by team projects and
What about the use in children education of the urban quality indicators developed by the UNICEF
Program the Childs Friendly Cities?
2) TEACHING ARCHITECTURE AND URBAN PLANNING IN THE UNIVERSITY
What are the best ways to teach architecture in the Schools of Architecture? What kind of
interdisciplinary frame is needed? What about design workshops and freedom to chose each
student program and place inside a general pedagogical structure? What about the right
equilibrium between strict individual invention and a rigid method homogeneous and global for all
persons and cultures? What about the relationships between the three epistemological gaps
defined above, and the education in our schools of architecture.
3) GENERAL EDUCATION AND ARCHITECTURE
Without space, human culture cannot survive. Dissertations and research on the spatial conditions
of general education are requested. Knowledge, embodied, extended or distributed, related to
general architectural education should be done. Adult education and relationships between
architecture and vulnerable users are welcomed. Dissertations upon links between the history of
education and the history of architecture are keys aspects of this research topic.
In architectural production
4 THE GENERATION OF KNOWLEDGE IN ARCHITECTURAL STUDIOS RELATED TO DESIGN, CONSTRUCTION OR USE
To uncover the different knowledges (embedded, extended or distributed) involved in the design
process in professional practices, either architects alone or in interdisciplinary way, are urgently
All theoretical views are accepted: phenomenological, systems theory, hermeneutic approaches
and so on. Biographic and critical analyses of architect’s works can be presented in this same
5A) THE INTERPLAY BETWEEN NATURAL ORDERS AND ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN: SUSTAINABILITY AND BIOGENETIC ARCHITECTURE
Sustainability and natural orders related to architecture and construction are welcomed.
Dissertations about the interplay between technology and design processes are needed.
Feedbacks between design and construction are needed.
5B) BIODIGITAL ARCHITECTURE & GENETICS.
Coordinator Alberto Estevez. Full Professor UIC.
6) DESIGNING DIGITAL TOOLS FOR A BETTER DESIGN
Any analyses about the feedback between experience and knowledge in the architectural and
urban design processes are welcomed.
PhD Dissertation about digital tools: space syntax, ELAN, ISOVISTS, etc. as tools for a better
design are needed. Case studies are welcomed as well as theoretical considerations related to the
three epistemological gaps defined above.
In planning participation
7) SOCIAL PARTICIPATION IN PLANNING AND THE CONCEPT OF PLACE CONSIDERED A DESIGN PRODUCT.
Experiences and theories about a social oriented planning process taking into account the cultural
diversity of places and users, and the different actors and roles involved in this same process. The
gentrification processes and the way to allow human welfare for all the different social groups and
values, without social exclusions.
8) TOOLS AND THEORIES FOR THE SOCIAL EVALUATION OF BUILDINGS AND CITIES
How refiguration, rehabilitation and renewal of places can improve human life in them. How about
interdisciplinary analyses and what are the best theoretical interpretation of data.
9 A) DESIGN AND SOCIAL HISTORY: HERITAGE, HISTORY AND URBAN FORMS
Life in cities cannot be fixed in a museistic way. However, to design in order to defeat the culture of
cities already there is an artificial work that can only produce thematic parks, where the urban life is
as dead as a videogame.
The dialogue between tradition and modernity is then needed .To preserve our heritage in order to
improve the human conditions of our cities is the key aspect at this point. Neither museums, nor
thematic parks, but liveable cities in permanent clever transformation thanks to the specific
modernity of each place.
9 B) THE MUSEUMS AND THE CITY OF TODAY. Coordinator Anna Pujol. GIRAS UPC.
2017-05-29 | Symposium Arquitectonics mind, land and society in Barlecona.