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10 seminares of three days around four urban situations

Civic Design is a postgraduate programme focused on the question of design as criteria of qualification of the citizen space. Leaded and coordinated by Ruedi Baur, this CAS unifies disciplines as architects, urbanists, designers, graphic designers, sociologists and politicians.

Every student/ researcher will concentrate his research on one of the four case studies developing during the year but will take equally part of the three other case studies: “The prototype as communication tool” Quartier of Aygalades/Marseille within Marseille-Provence-2013 and the Cité des Arts de la Rue. “Analysis of all the written in the city”, with the kitchen of Nègrepelisse, “Urban segregation”, Geneva/New York in collaboration with Parsons New School of Design, New York City, “IBA Basle in between two borders” with Alfredo Brillembourg and Hubert Klumpner, ETH DArch, Zurich.

admission conditions

interested parties should send your portfolio and your curriculum vitae and a note of motivation for one of the four selected case studies and send it to Imke Plint,

Selected students will be invited to an interview and will then be subject to the rules for admission of the Geneva University of Art and Design (HEAD).

Qualification awarded Certificate of Advanced Studies (20 ECTS)

general informations

2 semesters

2250 CHF per semester

Deadline for applications on September 2nd, 2011

Further information


10 seminars of three days in over ten months

1 - Seminar in Geneva September 29 to October 1, 2011
Opening seminar in Geneva
introduction to the various themes and modules

2 - Seminar in Marseille 24 to 26 November 2011
Case Study No. 1 Marseille 2013 - The prototype as tool to establish dialoge
in collaboration with Marseille Provence 2013

3 - Seminar in Basel 12 to 14 January 2012
Case Study No. 2 “IBA Basel in between two borders - a menage à trois”
in collaboration with International Bauausstellung (IBA) Basel and ETH Zürich

4 - Seminar in Geneva, 9 to 11 February 2012
Case Study No. 1 Marseille 2013 - The prototype as tool to establish dialoge
end of case study Marseille Provence 2013

5 - Seminar in Geneva 15 to 17 March 2012
Case Study No. 2 “IBA Basel in between two borders - a menage à trois”
end of case study Basel

6 - Seminar Nègrepelisse 19 to 21 April 2012
Case Study No. 3 “Nègrepelisse, about all the Written in the city”
With the kitchen of Nègrepelisse

7 - Seminar in New York May 17 to 19, 2012
Case Study No. 4 New York/Geneva – Urbane Segregation
in collaboration with Parsons New School for Design, New York

8 - Seminar in Geneva 14 to 16 June 2012
Case Study No. 3 “Nègrepelisse, about all the Written in the city”
end of case study Nègrepelisse

9 - Seminar in Geneva July 12 to 14, 2012
Case Study No. 4 New York / Geneva - Urbane Segregation
end of case study New York / Geneva

10 - Seminar in Geneva 27 to 29 September 2012
Final seminar in Geneva
make a research on one of the four subjects

case studies

Case Study N°1 Marseille 2013 – The prototype as tool to establish dialoge

We will try to establish a laboratory which will progressively evolve until at least 2013 and then make use of Marseille as a stage and opportunity to present the prototypes. That will be also the time of the discussion to realize prototypes over a longer period of time. It is very well possible that one or more proposals or projects can be translated into something definitive; however there are makeshift solutions which are still known to exist. It will be tantamount to use the prototypes as objects of confrontation to develop possibilities to fight against fatalism, to hurdle bureaucracy, to resolve fear of decisions or even to dissolve stuck habits. It is important to show that things can go differently, that they are realizable, a makeshift solution needs to be tested, a concrete ground for discussions should be established from which something definitive can be developed collectively. The inclusion of the inhabitants of the „Cité des Arts de la Rue“ and the „Quartiers des Aygalades“ should not only participate at the realization of this laboratory but they are furthermore in charge to continue the project beyond 2013.

Case Study N°2 “IBA Basle in between two borders - a menage à trois”

The objective of this study is the whole spectrum of these affiliations (between Switzerland, France and Germany) in every detail like a relationship between personalities in a triumvirate. This spectrum is oriented upon encounters, communication, in different languages, the seduction, in idioms or envy, the engagement and loyalty, the infidelity and the every-day. The human behavior (Björk) with all its differences in gender, habits and functionalities, the political, the generations and attitudes.

Case Study N°3 “Nègrepelisse, about all the Written in the city”

The project starts with the database and the associated analysis question the written within the public realm and at the same time bestow upon Nègrepelisse an own poetry. To survey the possibilities of a city the size of Nègrepelisse upon the cultivation of its written/textual quality, could lead the experience toward a development of a contemporary semiotics of the public realm that distinguishes between the local, national, the European, the public and private. The civil dimension and the main focus of this project is to acknowledge each recipient as a responsible citizen.

Case Study N°4 New York/Genève – Urbane Segregation

For its first year, the workshop will analyze and project around the alternative property designation referred as „Community Landtrusts“ and the making of the social, economical and spatial relations in one of most successful examples of collective ownership in New York, the Cooper Square Community Landtrust. Students will be expected to engage with its community by learning from the struggles and contradictions it has to land rent and capitalist speculation, as well as to work with them to design new forms of resistance and projection for their community. This Case Study will also concentrate on the local urban planning of Geneva, especially in the construction of new habitations in the agglomeration of Geneva.

Civic City institute for critical research in design 2011-2012

from 29/09/2011
to 29/09/2012

Haute École D’art et de Design - Genève
Boulevard James-Fazy 15
CH 1201 Genève

Marcos L. Rosa - ETH Zürich
Zurich Switzerland


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