Call for two PhD students

Geschrieben am 26.05.2015
Kategorie(n): ARCH+ news, ARCH+ campus, Mendrisio

As part of the research project "A Cross-cultural Theory of the Urban Passive House"

Deadline for application: June 28, 2015
Interviews: according to requirements
Starting date of position: October 1, 2015 (negotiable)
Application submission
Applications must be sent electronically (one pdf-file) to Sascha Roesler:

Università della Svizzera italiana - Accademia di architettura
Villa Argentina, Largo Bernasconi 2,
CH - 6850 Mendrisio

The weak point of today's theory of passive climate control is its focus on individual buildings and self-sufficiency which should be overcome by focusing on interdependence and synergy effects on an urban scale. In this research project, the "passive house" is to be rethought as an "urban passive house" and conceptualized as part of the "political ecology" of the city. The project's investigation is at the intersection of architecture, ethnography, and science and technology studies. It examines the complex relationship between the climate and the city. The future conception of the urban passive house relies on coordinated "combinations" between the different "agents" of passive climate control. Therefore at the very centre of this project is the investigation of meaningful "associations" (Bruno Latour) of spatial structures, sociocultural practices, and political regulations. The control of climate is conceived as a practice fundamentally influenced by culture and politics.

The two PhD projects will provide important empirical insights for theorizing the urban passive house. Doctoral students will be investigating the thermal conditions of an urban neighborhood in the global South and exploring modernization strategies that foster passive climate control in the district. With the underlying rationale of the city as a political ecology, the projects shall combine bioclimatic urban research with microscale investigations on the use of "common-pool resources" (Elinor Ostrom), on local thermal practices, and on the political regulations of climate control. For this, project proposals that consider a methodological framework combining ethnography with design research are sought.

For more details on requirements please download the call below

 Download Call as PDF

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