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Solà-Morales P.



SUPERSTUDIO is a cooperation project between EPFL, ETHZ and USI Mendrisio with the goal to understand and rethink the architectural design studio in the digital age.
The architectural design studio is a unique pedagogical instrument, based on the constructivist idea of « learning by building », the use of tangible mediating objects, external representations and rapid prototypes, and peer-to-peer inspiration and open reviews. As such it could serve as an educational role model for other academic and professional disciplines. Yet while the architectural design studio is a powerful pedagogical instrument, it is not well understood, and, importantly for this proposal, it is not adapted to the digital age. In contrast, technologically innovative architectural practices have undergone significant transformations in recent years, becoming global, distributed, digital and integrated. The proposed cooperation project aims at (i) studying and (ii) reinventing the studio by taking into consideration these transformations.
The proposed cooperation will analyze digitally advanced design studios as they are conducted today, and derive basic principles. The project will in parallel develop new concepts for the studio – SUPERSTUDIO - in light of the introduction of digital tools, such as parametric design and digital morphogenesis, and test them iteratively in experiments with a prototype studio conducted at EPFL. The results will be generalized in a way that SUPERSTUDIO could serve as a pedagogical role model for (1) traditional design studios in architecture aiming at introducing digital tools for designing (not merely for representing artifacts once the design has been done), and (2) other disciplines aiming at introducing the studio as a pedagogical instrument, especially those concerned with creative or synthetic problem-solving.

Additional information

Start date
End date
24 Months
Funding sources