PhD Seminar “Neighborhoods in transition”

Ronquoz 21 © Ville de Sion /  Herzog & de Meuron et Michel Desvigne Paysagiste

Ronquoz 21 © Ville de Sion / Herzog & de Meuron et Michel Desvigne Paysagiste

Supported by SwissUniversities and organized within the axis Integrated Design, Architecture and Sustainability (IDEAS), the Doctoral Program Architecture and Sciences of the City (EDAR) and the research project Rhodanie urbaine, developed by the Laboratory of Architecture and Sustainable Technologies (LAST), the PhD seminar will explore, from 19-21 October 2021, the potential of urban riverbanks as a new opportunity to design sustainable fluvial neighborhoods.

Today, the changing relations between cities and their rivers raise – after a certain exclusion of waterways from urban areas – a series of questions on their renewal potentials. Indeed, urban densification objectives may resonate with flood protection strategies, which, in turn, opens up new investigation fields for the future of urban riverbanks. In this perspective, abandoned sites, such as fluvial brownfields, represent a significant potential for the creation of new, sustainable neighborhoods.

The PhD seminar “Neighborhoods in transition – Urban riverbanks as an opportunity for architectural design” was conceived to explore these issues. Supported by SwissUniversities and organized within the axis Integrated Design, Architecture and Sustainability (IDEAS), the Doctoral Program Architecture and Sciences of the City (EDAR) and the research project Rhodanie urbaine, developed by the Laboratory of Architecture and Sustainable Technologies (LAST), the course aims at supporting exchanges between PhD students in the fields of architecture, urban planning, urban engineering, urban geography and sociology, and interested in the topic “sustainable fluvial neighborhoods”.

The PhD seminar’s program is structured according to four lines of research, considered to be essential to the design of a sustainable fluvial neighborhood: MUTATIONS, LANDSCAPES, PROCESSES and USES. One half-day session is dedicated to the exploration of each of the four themes. Each thematic session includes two conferences on pioneer sustainable fluvial neighborhoods, given by external lecturers (architect, urban planner or landscape architect), as well as a round table, which aims at identifying the invariants and specificities of each case study while stimulating interactions between PhD students and lecturers.