…while we are all floating on the same sea, it is clear that some are in superyachts while others are clinging to floating debris Antonio Guterres, UN Secretary-General, 2020

Covid-19 has amplified long-standing inequalities across the globe, bringing the multi-faceted exclusion that many people face into sharp focus. &rchitecture seeks to understand the potential for architects to affect positive change through inclusive and engaged practices. In doing this, we attempt to reconcile who we are as people with what we do as architects, rather than fall into habitual norms and practices that perpetuate many of the inequalities that are evident in society. In MArch1 we undertake interpret ‘professional studies’ not as the simulation of an architect-client relationship, but the use of professional processes, skills and techniques to justify new forms of practice. In MArch2, students develop individual thesis projects based on an issue, cause or consequence of social exclusion that interests them. They explore these questions through the development of non-linear, productive and iterative design research methodologies, ranging from physical prototyping to augmented reality games. These intuitive design methods engage with and clarify research questions as a technique to support routine challenging of biases and presumptions.

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Year 6

Professional Studies

Professional Studies 1

Professional Studies 1 and 2 will explore the potentials for new models and typologies that better address the conditions of exclusion and inequality that Covid-19 has made unavoidable, but which have existed for years. We are not designing responses for the short-term (i.e. for social distancing), but instead will look at social, economic, environmental propositions which respond to the structural inequalities in society, both in the UK and across the globe.

In PS1 students were asked to identify a group of people in their hometown who are disproportionally impacted by Covid-19, and to design a housing community that addresses the specific experiences of exclusion that they face. The students explored the role of housing as a central component of inequality, and developed different models of collaborative, interdependent housing in response. The international focus of PS1 allowed students to share the social, spatial and architectural challenges local to them, learning from each other’s experiences as a means of understanding and tackling the perpetual global housing crisis.

Professional Studies 2

In PS2, we questioned whether an increasingly exclusionary society be challenged without first addressing the notion that inequality can be solved simply by producing ‘more’ stuff – the unconvincing orthodoxy that in a world of excess, everyone will get enough. On the contrary, recent history has shown that the constant push for GDP growth above all else has led to natural destruction and human (and animal) exploitation, and an unequal distribution of the benefit. In PS2, we will explore the architecture of degrowth – a possible future driven not by accumulation, but by new collective relationships. In groups, students explored one of six themes; rights, production, family, technology, play and distribution. Each group will develop their own programme for the site, proposing a series of non-residential spaces and associated public realm.

Our site is Manchester Abattoir in Openshaw, Manchester - a series of 1960s concrete buildings that were once the most technologically advance abattoir in Europe when opened but quickly proved to be unfit for modern commercial environment. In keeping with the degrowth agenda, students were challenged to reuse the existing structure and develop technical and environmental strategies that addressed issues of waste, reuse and carbon cycles (as well as human behaviour).


Year 5

Adeyinka Adedunni Adebiyi, Alice Mana Wilson, Anna Gleis, Athena Pantazis, Beena Nouri, Caitlin Boyd, Chen Qi, Christian Anthony Cunha Brown, Jack Francis, Jessica Bell, Jobey Keene, Kamila Bochenska, Laura Jane Aspinall, Luke Thomas, Luvsansambuu Luvsansambuu, Ma Yanran, Matthew Galan, Max Ferguson Frost, Megan Pledger, Muhammad Ifwat Bin Zunaidi, Muhd Danial Liew Bin Mohd Amin Liew, Oscar Francis Henery, Samuel Andrew Sayle, Seyed Ilia Jalilazar Sharabiani, Si Taiming, Sing Hong Chau, Siyuan Lin, Sook Wai Lee, Tala Khouri, Tim Scopes, Trisha Pradhan, Wang Jianyu, Ximai Ma, Yang Yuxi, Yoanna Barzeva, Zhang Zhengyang

Year 6

Lok Kan Katie Au, Binyu Binev, Dalia Binti Mohammad Nasaruddin, Shra Binti Shukri, Ariel Chesley, Amanda Chua, Abigail Colder, Emily Hagger, Philippa Humphries, Sung Jie Koh, Cheryl Jade Leung, Kiran Milton, Cezara Misca, Adil Mulk, Aifa Muthuraman, Yoon Nam, Benedetta Nigro, Andrius Ovsiukas, Crystal Poon, Nestor J Ruiz Medina, Kaja Sandura, Anya Tineva, Tianyi (Willa) Wen, Harry Westwood, Ka Wong, Veronica Wong