The Architectural Project (AP)

The sub-program ‘The Architectural Project’ concerns itself with the actual object of architecture in particular: the building, the design as manifest in models and drawings, and the materialization of ideas in the project.

  • AP-1. The Building: Types and Models

    The research project ‘Buildings and interiors: types, models, contexts and people’ holds that the architectural project, manifest in buildings and interiors, embodies knowledge that can be made explicit through comparative and interpretive study. The project recognises that buildings and interiors are aspects of culture and subject to its ideas, which are––along with meaning––embedded in buildings' and interiors’ materials, representations and relations to the World. As products of ideas, buildings and interiors are devised to address the people who use them; therefore, their effects are of special interest to this project. 

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

    The AP-2 research group focuses on and questions the mutual relationship among public buildings, public spaces and the public realm. Their functioning and organization are physically, symbolically, socially and economically fundamental to the city. Architecturally, they form a domain both of convention and experimentation. And due to the nature and ever-changing character of the public realm, this relationship can only be seen in socio-cultural and economic context.

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  • AP-3. Borders & Territories

    This research group focuses on the study of complex spatial mechanisms and systems within contemporary cities and territories, as they constitute the contextual basis of architectural interventions. These urban and territorial conditions are considered the prime forces of influence for contemporary architectural reflection and production.

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  • AP-4. Mapping the territory and the cities of the Randstad

    “Mapping the cities of the Randstad” presents a comparative analysis of the architecture of the nine most important historical cities of the Randstad Holland based on the historical dynamics of the system of Dutch cities and its impact on the interaction of urban form and building typology. It is an interdisciplinary research group with special focus on architecture. It aims to bring about an intensive exchange of scientific knowledge. In collaboration with other parties, the aim of the group is to publish an Atlas of the Randstad Holland. The Atlas is intended as a comprehensive design tool for future architectural interventions.

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Foundations (F)

The sub-program ‘Foundations’ revolves around understanding the issues present in architectural discourse and their historical precedents.

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

    “Revisions: Changing Ideals and Shifting Realities” focuses on the investigation of design approaches, attitudes and positions in the context of existing and emerging architectural cultures. The research aims for an in-depth evaluation of architectural proposals (projects, realizations, methods) in relation to wider political, social and cultural questions and challenges.

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

    This group re-positions architecture as a field of expertise with its own specific logic, rationale and instruments. This entails an in-depth investigation of the material reality of architectural projects and their underlying rationale, but also how the project performs. This focus on the concrete project is guided by a study of existing design approaches, instruments and disciplinary boundaries. In the wake of an increasing dispersion of expertise (through such surrounding fields as economy, sociology, philosophy), architects have found an increasing need to identify what their own area of expertise is (as written by Willem-Jan Neutelings in an essay in 2008, NAi bulletin #5).

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  • Design & History - Joint research program department of Architecture, Urbanism and AE&T

    The basis of the Design & History research programme is a shared vision: the interaction and integration of all relevant aspects pertaining to the reconstruction, restoration, preservation, revitalization and transformation of the built heritage as well as to the building technologies of the past and newly developed methods used in restoration work. The programme encompasses all scale levels, namely building materials, individual buildings and urban ensemble.

    The research carried out by the Design & History group focuses on the built heritage. Various mutually interconnected fields can be distinguished: Architectural history, Policy, Process & Heritage Theory, Mapping history, Interventions: Reflections & Design.

    The programme promotes a scientifically sound approach to the built heritage, inspiring all stakeholders to carefully examine the full range of possibilities inherent in the modification (the scale of the material), intervention (the scale of the building) and transformation (the urban scale). History, critical historiography, the analysis of historical building materials and the exploration of ways to prevent these from decaying, the design of interventions ranging from material preservation to radical transformation, all these aspects require a precise assessment in order to facilitate useful and responsible interventions.

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