‘The City as Project’ Research Collaborative

The ‘City as a Project’ is a collaborative of Researchers that focuses on the relationship between architecture, politics and urban history. The collaborative started within the PhD program at the Berlage Institute and TU Delft between 2010 and 2014. Presently it is an independent group of architects and candidates from PhD program ‘City-Architecture’ at the Architectural Association in London, whose work aim to go beyond the traditional division between ‘theory’ and ‘practice’ and reclaim architecture as a project and thus as an integral approach to both our discipline and the city.
A fundamental issue at stake in the work of ‘The city as a Project’ collaborative is the issue of form in relation to ideas of the political. The term city is here defined not as a mere mass of flows and programs but as a political form. The terms political and form are assumed to be the fundamental criteria that construct the essence of the city. If the essence of political action is the attempt to project a form of coexistence among individuals, it may be said that architectural form—by means of patterning, framing, and representing the space of coexistence—inevitably implies a political vision. Even if there is no explicit ‘political architecture’, there is certainly a political way of making and reading architectural form. Far from being just an aesthetic category, physical form represents the political understanding of the city as a constant dialectic process of inclusion and exclusion. This commitment to formal and material responsibility is meant to be a departure from the laissez-faire rhetoric of flexibility, indeterminacy, programming, branding, hybridity, and immateriality that has paralyzed recent discussion on the city.


Pier Vittorio Aureli, Bernardina Borra, Jingru Cyan Cheng, Amir Djalali, Fernando Donis, Maria S. Giudici, Platon Issaias, Hamed Khosravi, Christopher C. M. Lee, Francesco Marullo, Samaneh Moafi, Olivia Neves Marra, Davide Sacconi.