Methods and Analysis

  • Research_afbeelding

Methods and Analysis: Research

This Chair develops three fields of research that focus on I) a better understanding of design thinking, II) widening our knowledge of existing design approaches, and III) developing new design perspectives.


I. Positions: Thinking Design Knowledge in Architecture
A first field of education and research for the chair will consider the foundations of design knowledge in the field of architecture. The chair will try to make a substantial contribution to our understanding of how design thinking and practice operates in the field of architecture. Hence, it will probe into the various aspects of design knowledge and touch upon the ways that architects construct this from previous projects, designed by others or by themselves. The functioning of design projects as sources of knowledge, but also as places for experimentation –for trying out and developing design knowledge— will be addressed. This will include the relation between on the one hand the project design task itself, and on the other hand a more general and long term design process, or rather research program, which affects and is affected by each design project. In addition, the Chair of Analysis and Methods will reflect upon the capacity of an architectural project to surpass immediate urgencies and objectives, to explore the potential of design concepts, investigate the possibilities of a site, or even study structural and material issues. 


II. Revisions: Widening the Canon of Design Knowledge
This second field of research and education attempts to critically accumulate a body of design knowledge. The chair wants to defend the value of memory in architectural culture – memory as a critical and prospective capacity, which allows to articulate connections in the present between the past and the future. This does not represent a blind belief in the methods of typologies of the past for confronting the issues of the present, nor the conviction that historical forms are valuable just because they are old. Rather memory is considered as an active tool of architecture that allows one to look for clues and sources in a wider and more appropriate field than merely the one coinciding with the latest tendency of trendy shapes and fashionable images. Following Tafuri’s idea of typological criticism, the Chair of Analysis and Methods will advocate an approach in which ‘historical analysis, critical examination, critical function of the image and demonstrative value of planning are all indissolubly connected’, supported by ‘the interaction between literary instruments and graphical instruments’. It is such a critical attitude, based upon design knowledge of the (recent) past that this chair wants to convey.


III. Projections: Perspectives on New Design Knowledge
A third field of research an education of the Chair of Methods and Analysis concerns the development of new perspectives for design knowledge. Based on the investigations of the character of design knowledge (first field of research and education), as well as on an expanded field of design knowledge (second field), the Chair of Analysis and Methods will articulate new approaches, methods and concepts for contemporary architectural practice.    



The department of Methods & Analysis runs two and participates in four projects that investigate the influence of change and continuity in design practices:

Responsible for

> F-1. Revisions: Changing Ideals and Shifting Realities

> F-2. The Discipline of Architecture and its Instruments

Participation in:

> AP-1. The Building: Types and Models 

> AP-2. Architecture and the City: Public Building /Public Realm, Composition & Tectonics

> AP-3. Border conditions

> AP-4. Mapping Randstad Holland

The projects are connected (related) to the recent research on the concept of modernity in architecture. Modernity reflects the phenomenon of permanent change that dominates the context and contents of 20th and 21st century social-cultural life.