IAAC’s Master in City & Technology (1 or 2-year program) is a unique program oriented towards redefining the analysis, planning, and design of twenty-first-century cities and beyond. The program offers expertise in the design of digitally enhanced, ecological and human-centered urban environments by intersecting the disciplines of urbanism and data science. Taking place in Barcelona, the capital of urbanism, the Master in City & Technology is training the professionals that city administrations, governments, industries, and communities need, to transform the urban environment in the era of big data.
Master in City & Technology (1-year Program)
Master in City & Technology + Thesis Project (2-year Program)
|Degree||The Master in City & Technology is accredited by the School of Professional and Executive Development at the Polytechnic University of Catalonia – European Higher Education Area (EHEA)||The Master in City & Technology is accredited by the School of Professional and Executive Development at the Polytechnic University of Catalonia – European Higher Education Area (EHEA)|
|Edition||6th edition||3rd edition|
|Credits||75 ECTS||120 ECTS|
|Duration||9 Months – From October 2020 to June 2021 // Full time – Classes are only held in the afternoons to permit part-time jobs in the morning||18 Months – From October 2020 to June 2022 – Thesis Final Submission: September 2022 // Full time – Classes are only held in the afternoons to permit part-time jobs in the morning|
|Tuition Fee||Non-EU: 18.750€
|Admission||Architects, Urbanists, Designers, Computer Scientists, Engineers, Data Scientists, Entrepreneurs.||Architects, Urbanists, Designers, Computer Scientists, Engineers, Data Scientists, Entrepreneurs.|
CONTEXT & AGENDA
The digital revolution coupled with the unforeseen environmental, economic and social challenges that our world and cities face today, urge the practices of urban design and planning to rethink many of the traditions and bases upon which they operated over the past decades. We believe that when we train urbanists, architects, engineers, computer scientists and technologists in the same arena, placing them in one single team, we have the potential to radically transform the urban and built environment.
The Master in City & Technology programme focuses on training the new professionals that will be able to accelerate urban innovation through the use of big data and digital technologies while following the principles of human-centered, ecological and intelligent design.
With a focus on three main fields of operation (Internet of Cities, Internet of Buildings and Internet of People) the programme explores digital technologies (from data analytics and Artificial Intelligence to generative and parametric design) to develop holistic urban and architectural projects that bring a positive impact to the built environment and the society that inhabits it.
Each year, the programme aims to create new categories of urban and building projects, technologies, and solutions that can be extended systematically to the cities of the world, with the aim of creating applied visions of more sustainable, resilient, inclusive and responsive urban environments.
TOOLS & SOFTWARE
Students of the Master in City & Technology are introduced to a large variety of technological tools and software that are imperative for the multi-scalar representation and understanding of the urban environment. During the programme students are trained on the latest tools for computational design, urban simulations, and spatial data science by attending seminars on programming, dynamic mapping, big data analytics and visualization, as well as parametric urban design. Seminars on the following tools and software are conducted:
Master in City & Technology Projects
“Why” and “how” would buildings communicate with each other? The Internet of Buildings is a project which aims to create new typologies of buildings, by redefining their role as single nodes in a larger network of communication and exchange of data, energy, goods, and resources. This interactive physical model is visualizing the Internet of Buildings by showing its impact in an area of 28 blocks located in Barcelona’s district of Sant-Marti. The model shows how the Internet of Buildings can be used to:
- Re-program buildings based on time
- Use responsive and material technologies to balance atmospheric pollution
- Transform buildings and public space for the creation of a new circular metabolism
- Use advanced environmental simulations for the design of microclimates in public spaces
Can we use Antarctica – an extreme territory confined by natural limits – to explore, understand, and then confront this understanding with today’s most extreme urban contexts, in order to apply our learnings on these existing urban extremities?
This was the main question presented to IAAC’s Master in City & Technology 2019/20 students as part of the first term studio Internet of Cities which was led by Dr. Mathilde Marengo and Edouard Cabay during which faculty and students researched together, the connection, interaction, and exchange of data through diverse scales of an urbanized context.
Cities are constantly evolving through the interaction of people and the built environment, and data analytics has become a necessary tool for their development. With the rise of Airbnb and the shift towards digital platforms, tomorrow’s economy will be reshaped as new urban economic models are transforming the traditional ones. Data analytics has helped us understand the different patterns behind sharing platforms in many different cities, in an effort to tackle economic and political inequalities in Barcelona.
During the studio the Internet of People with the valuable guidance of inAtlas Co-Founder and CEO Luis Falcon, the Master in City & Technology students examined the global rise of tourism during the last 15 years, by analyzing urban indicators related to gentrification. Using big data analytics and sophisticated cartography tools, they investigated the ways in which citizens can be transformed from consuming agents in the city into generating agents by becoming active participants in the utilization & production of data.
What would the urban environment look like if it was completely covered in green?
What would the impact be on the urban environment and the life of its citizens?
How much would it cost to maintain it?
Could we use it as an energy generating infrastructure?
The Green Dip workshop, a collaborative effort between IAAC’s Master in City & Technology and The Why Factory. During this intense 7 day workshop the Master in City & Technology researchers, with the valuable guidance of The Why Factory, produced visions of 7 cities that have been completely enveloped in green.
For each of these cities, the Master in City & Technology researchers made challenging calculations related to the cost and benefits of nature-based solutions, collecting data related to each city and each plant such as energy production, soil retention, water needs, maintenance cost, CO2 absorption, oxygen production, etc.
SuperBARRIO is a tool for architects, urban planners and public entities to engage the citizens in the design of the public space, to collect data about the citizens’ needs & desires. SuperBARRIO uses gamification strategies to engage the citizens in the design of the urban space. As an open-source online tool, SuperBARRIO widens the potential audience of participatory design processes, overcoming the limits of conventional methodologies.
The first case study was the Superblock of Barcelona. Known in Catalan as Superilla Pilot, it represents the pilot project of a wider urban regeneration plan led by the Agencia de Ecologia Urbana de Barcelona within the Urban Mobility Plan of Barcelona 2013-2018.
The Internet of Buildings
Master in City & Technology 2018/19
The Green Dip
Master in City & Technology 2018/19 and The Why Factory
Winy Maas – MVRDV & The Why Factory
Master in City & Technology Interview
Carlo Ratti – Carlo Ratti Associati & MIT Senseable City Lab
Master in City & Technology Interview
The Master in City & Technology’s academic structure is based on IAAC’s innovative, learn-by-doing and design-through-research methodology which focuses on the development of interdisciplinary skills. During the Master in City & Technology students will have the opportunity to be part of a highly international group, including faculty members, researchers, and lecturers, in which they are encouraged to develop collective decision-making processes and materialize their project ideas. In this way, IAAC has put together an experimental learning environment which equips professionals with both the theoretical and practical knowledge needed to face the increasing complexity of the contemporary urban environment and to define the future of urbanism.
Master in City & Technology (1-year Program)
The Master in City and Technology comprises the following elements:
- Design Studios
- Technology Seminars
- Strategic Planning Seminars
- Urban Design Seminars and Workshops
- Theory Seminars and Master Classes
- IAAC Lecture Series
DESIGN STUDIO AND SEMINARS
The First Term (Internet of Cities) focuses on the development of strategies, analytics, and planning proposals for urban regeneration, new urban metabolisms, future mobility, and public space transformation. It is structured by a Design Studio and five complementary obligatory Seminars. Students will be introduced to principles of strategic planning, urban design, and theory of cities, as well as new tools for coding, cartography, urban analytics, and computational design.
TERM 1 COURSES:
- Design Studio – Internet of Cities – New Urban Metabolisms (9 ECTS)
- Technology Seminar – Digital Tools & Big Data I (3 ECTS)
- Technology Seminar – Computational Urban Design I (3 ECTS)
- Strategic Planning Seminar – Google Urbanism (3 ECTS)
- Urban Design Seminar – Future Mobility (3 ECTS)
- Theory Seminar – Digital City (2 ECTS)
NOTE: Design Studio and Seminars of Term 1 are obligatory.
DESIGN STUDIOS AND SEMINARS
The Second Term (Internet of People) is structured by one Design Studio and five complementary obligatory Seminars. Students will continue developing technical skills in data analytics and computational design, as well as being introduced to urban ecological design and novel processes for citizen participation in the development of sustainable, open and user-driven urban environments.
TERM 2 COURSES:
- Design Studio – Internet of People – Human-Centered Dynamic Design (9 ECTS)
- Technology Seminar – Digital Tools & Big Data II (3 ECTS)
- Technology Seminar – Computational Urban Design II (3 ECTS)
- Strategic Planning Seminar – The Role of Citizens in the City (3 ECTS)
- Urban Design Seminar – Urban Ecology (3 ECTS)
- Theory Seminar – New Urban Economies (3 ECTS)
NOTE: Design Studio and Seminars of Term 2 are obligatory.
DESIGN STUDIO AND SEMINARS
The Third Term (Internet of Buildings) is focused on the design and development of hyperconnected building typologies for new urban infrastructure, including new resource-management tools such as the Blockchain. It is structured by a Design Studio and five complementary obligatory Seminars. Students will continue developing technical skills in data analytics, urban simulations, and computational design, as well as being introduced to new projects for the design of intelligent buildings, the infrastructure of services, user interaction and technologies of information.
TERM 3 COURSES:
- Design Studio – Internet of Buildings (9 ECTS)
- Technology Seminar – Digital Tools & Big Data III (3 ECTS)
- Technology Seminar – Computational Urban Design III (3 ECTS)
- Strategic Planning Seminar – Urban Sensing (3 ECTS)
- Urban Design Seminar – Urbiotica (3 ECTS)
- Theory Seminar – Blockchain 4 Cities (3 ECTS)
NOTE: Design Studio and Seminars of Term 3 are obligatory
Throughout all three terms, the Master in City & Technology students will attend transversal theoretical courses, which aim to bring them in direct contact with the front running professionals of this multidisciplinary field. Through masterclasses and lectures, they will be presented the challenges and learnings of professionally engaging with real case applications. All classes throughout all the terms are mandatory.
- Theory Master Classes – Theory of Cities (2 ECTS)
- IAAC Lecture Series (2 ECTS)
Master in City & Technology + Thesis Project (2-year Program)
Master in City & Technology + Thesis Project – FIRST YEAR
The first year of the Master in City & Technology + Thesis Project is the same for both programmes and has a structure of 3 terms of 3 months each.
Master in City & Technology + Thesis Project – SECOND YEAR
During the Master in City & Technology + Thesis Project, students have the unique opportunity to work for an additional time of 9 months on an Individual Thesis Project, focused on the development of one research or pilot project based on the student’s interest. IAAC supports the student in selecting their Thesis Project topic in order to better orient them according to their future career interests and opportunities. Each student is assigned one or more Thesis Advisors that follow the development of the work throughout the year.
In parallel to the development of the Thesis Project Studio, the second year of the Master in City & Technology offers a series of seminars enhancing both the theoretical, practical and computational skills of the students.
The Second Academic year of the Master in City & Technology comprises the following elements:
- Thesis Project Studio
- Digital Tools Seminars and Master Classes
- Urban Design Workshops
- Theory Seminars and Master Classes
The programme is organized into three terms.
Throughout all three terms, the Master in City & Technology + Thesis Project students will attend transversal sessions which bring them in direct contact with their thesis advisor(s) as well as front running professionals in the fields of research and development, innovation, strategic planning, economics, and sustainability. All classes throughout all the terms are mandatory.
- Thesis Project Studio – Advanced Urbanism (30 ECTS)
- Theory Seminar – Research & Methods (3 ECTS)
- Theory Seminar – Ideas for Change (3 ECTS)
- Cross Reviews – Economics, Sustainability & Innovation Cross-Reviews (1 ECTS)
In parallel to the Thesis Project Studio sessions and the Theory Seminars, the first term consists of two complementary obligatory Seminars and one workshop. Students will be introduced to strategic urban design principles, as well as new tools for urban analytics, programming, and computational design.
TERM 1 COURSES:
- Digital Tools Seminar – Computational Urban Design IV (1 ECTS)
- Digital Tools Seminar– Big Data Analytics (1 ECTS)
- Workshop – Strategic Urban Design (1 ECTS)
In parallel to the Thesis Project Studio sessions and the Theory Seminars, the second term consists of two complementary obligatory Seminars and one workshop. Students will attend advanced classes of computational design and will be introduced to systemic urban design principles, as well as to the theory and initial applications of artificial intelligence into urban environments.
TERM 2 COURSES:
- Digital Tools Seminar– Computational Urban Design V (1 ECTS)
- Digital Tools Seminar– Artificial Intelligence in Urbanism I (1 ECTS)
- Workshop – Systemic Urban Design (1 ECTS)
In parallel to the Thesis Project Studio sessions and the Theory Seminars, the third term consists of one complimentary obligatory Seminar and one workshop. Students will be introduced to digital urban design principles, as well as to advanced applications of artificial intelligence in urban planning and urban design.
TERM 3 COURSES:
- Digital Tools Seminar– Artificial Intelligence in Urbanism II (1 ECTS)
- Workshop – Algorithmic Urban Design (1 ECTS)
The Master in City and Technology is a programme for architects, urbanists, designers, computer scientists, engineers, data scientists and entrepreneurs that want to become urban technologists and lead the future of urban environments. If you are passionate about combining design and data science in order to lead the positive transformation of cities and you are willing to work together with multidisciplinary experts, industries and city administrations on real case studies for the acceleration of urban innovation and intelligent design, then the Master in City & Technology is made for you.
The Master in City & Technology structure links our students to an interconnected network of professionals, companies, as well as academic and research centers. Through this network, they directly have the opportunity to be professionally integrated into both the public and private sectors in fields related to urban design & planning, urban intelligence, and urban analytics. Furthermore, with the support of IAAC, students have the possibility to create their own practices in the above-mentioned fields.
Irene Rodriguez Vara – Urban Data Specialist at O-HB
Master in City & Technology 2017/18 Alumni
Our scholarship competition has now finished and we’re unable to accept any more scholarship applications for this year. If you would like to find out when the competition is reopening, please subscribe to our newsletter where we will make the announcement.
PROJECT PROPOSAL: “BIG DATA URBANISM”
The theme of the scholarship offered by the Master in City and Technology programme is focused on Big Data Urbanism: Big data has become an essential tool for the understanding of the urban environment and the generation of accurate decision-making processes for their transformation.
Participants are asked to use Big Data as a tool which informs an urban planning and/or urban design proposal for a city of their choice. In their proposals, they are asked to showcase how through the use of big data they can:
1. Visualize a city’s layers (i.e mobility & transportation, vegetation, road network, waste management infrastructure, energy consumption/generation, housing, tourism, economic activities etc.) through the use of maps and charts.
2. Create a strategy which informs an urban planning/design proposal for the transformation of a city.
- A pdf file, A3 format, 3 pages max (max 8MB) containing: a short description in English of the project and the strategy/rationale behind the proposal; images, plans or diagrams of the designed elements.
Start and end dates to be released soon.
Dr. Areti Markopoulou is a Greek architect, researcher and urban technologist working at the intersection between architecture and digital technologies. She is the Academic Director at IAAC in Barcelona, where she also leads the Advanced Architecture Group, a multidisciplinary research group exploring how design and science can positively impact and transform the present and future of our built spaces, the way we live and interact. Her research and practice seeks to redefine architecture as a performative “body” beyond traditional notions of static materiality, approximate data, or standardized manufacturing.
Areti is founder and principal of the multidisciplinary practice Design Dynamics Studio, and co-editor of Urban Next, a global network focused on rethinking architecture through the contemporary urban milieu. She is the project coordinator of a number of European Research funded Projects on topics including urban regeneration through technologies and multidisciplinary educational models in the digital age.
Dr. Areti Markopoulou – Design Research Studio Leader – Responsive Cities
Dr. Mathilde Marengo – Design Research Studio Leader – Architecture & Urbanism
Edouard Cabay – Design Research Studio Leader – Dynamic Mapping (Appareil)
Luis Falcon – Design Research Studio Leader – Big Data Analytics (InAtlas)
Dr. Diego Pajarito – Data Science and Cartography
Rodrigo Aguirre – Computational Design
Willy Müller – Urban Design (Urban Science Lab)
Dr. Jordi Vivaldi – Urban Design and Theory
Prof. Manuel Gausa – Urbanism and Theory
Nicolay Boyadjiev – Urbanism and Digital Platform Economy (Strelka)
Dr. Kathrin DiPaola – Strategic Planning and Anthropology (Business Sweden)
Julius Streifeneder – Architecture and Systemic Design (Urban Standards)
Francesca Arcuri – Mobility and Transportation (Mobility in Chain)
Sebastiano Scacchetti – Mobility and Cities (BuroHappold Engineering)
Aldo Sollazzo – Urban Sensing and Robotics (Noumena)
Eugenio Bettucchi – Parametric Urban Design (Noumena)
Angelos Chronis – Artificial Intelligence in Urbanism (City Intelligence Lab – AIT)
José Luis de Vicente – Digital Culture, Innovation and New Media Art (Sonar+D)
Dr. Gonzalo Delacámara – Economics and Social Entrepreneurship (IMDEA Agua)
Dr. Lluisa Marsal – Blockchain Technologies (Catalan Institute of Energy, Government of Catalonia)
Dr. Mara Balestrini – Innovation, Strategic Planning and Project Management (Ideas for Change)
Winy Maas – Urban Ecology (MVRDV & The Why Factory)
Carlo Ratti – Senseable Cities (Carlo Ratti Associati & MIT Senseable City Lab)
Eduardo Rico – Digital Landscapes (Space Syntax UCL & Architectural Association)
Guest Faculty – Theory:
Albert Canigueral – Ouishare
Marcella Del Signore – New York Institute of Technology
Dr. Lydia Kallipoliti – Cooper Union
Enric Ruiz Geli – Cloud9
Tomas Diez – IAAC / Fab City
Guillem Camprodon – Fab Lab Barcelona / Smart Citizen
Emma Costa – Bayern Innovativ
Paul Poinet – Speckle
Every year the Master in City & Technology collaborates with a network of professionals from the worlds of industry, research and academia and the European Community. Through this network and a solid collaboration with the city council of Barcelona, students have a unique opportunity to study with professionals coming from the fields of architecture, urban planning, urban design, urban technologies, mobility and transportation, data science, big data analytics, artificial intelligence, urban innovation and economics.
Carlo Ratti Associati is a rapidly growing architectural practice based in Turin, Italy, with branches in Boston and London. Drawing on Carlo Ratti’s research at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the office is currently involved in many projects across the globe. Embracing every scale of intervention, ranging from city masterplans to furniture design, the work of the practice focuses on revolutionizing the use of digital technologies in our built environment and daily lives.
Implementing projects aimed at domestic and international public institutions, foundations, organizations, and companies by applying a systemic approach for reorienting the management of cities towards a more sustainable model, contributing solutions for mobility, energy, waste, urban planning, water, biodiversity, and social cohesion.
Mobility In Chain is an international transport planning firm founded in 2009 by Davide Boazzi, Federico Cassani and Federico Parolotto who decided to open a new firm after 10 years of experience in the field. The MIC team is strongly focused on international work, providing transport consultancy to developers, master planners and public bodies all around the world. MIC introduces a new innovative and sustainable vision for mobility, a vision that is based upon understanding the need of the client and focused on both functional matters and urban quality.
inAtlas is a Big Data and Location Analytics company that offers strategic business solutions. It has created a proprietary technology that increases the speed of geospatial data processing. Since 2010, it has designed and developed customized tools for private companies like Heineken, Northgate, Prisa Radio, Informa D&B, among others; and public governments like those of the Barcelona City or Santa Cruz de Tenerife City.
Rapid urbanization across the globe has a direct impact on our future mobility needs. 75% of the infrastructure needed for urban environments by 2050 is not built yet, which offers substantial potential for new business models and ideas.
Urban Standards is a specialist in finding new ways of value creation through the systemic integration of technologies, services and partners in the urban real estate. We develop and assess solutions for mobility/transport service providers, real estate developers, and cities that match future needs and create new user experiences.
Mcrit” stands for “Multicriteria”, the evaluation method that integrates multiple quantitative and qualitative criteria. MCRIT counts on a multidisciplinary staff of consultants specialized on strategic, urban and regional development, with a particular focus on infrastructure and transportation planning. To support these work activities, MCRIT develops advanced information, forecast, evaluation and communication systems.
BuroHappold Engineering is an international, integrated engineering consultancy operating in 23 locations worldwide, with 60 partners and over 1700 employees including some of the world’s leading consulting engineers. For over 40 years we’ve been building our reputation for delivering creative, value led building and city solutions for an ever-changing world.
Ideas for Change is a consulting and research company that works in the intersection between innovation, strategy, and design. We have pioneered research on collaborative strategies and exponential growth; we’ve also consulted for big and small size clients looking to transition to more contributive and open models while sustaining competitiveness. Our in-house innovation projects have been recognized and used to drive innovation worldwide.
RESEARCH & ACADEMIA
The Why Factory (T?F) is a global think-tank and research institute, run by MVRDV and Delft University of Technology and led by professor Winy Maas. It explores possibilities for the development of our cities by focusing on the production of models and visualizations for cities of the future. Education and research of The Why Factory are combined in a research lab and platform that aims to analyze, theorize and construct future cities.
The City Intelligence Lab (CIL) is an interactive digital platform to explore novel forms and techniques for the urban development practice of the future. As incubator for intelligent solutions the lab fosters the co-creation of digital urban planning workflows and processes, applying augmented reality and interactive design interfaces to create simulations, generative design and artificial intelligence solutions. The CIL is past of the Digital Resilient Cities Competence Unit anchored in the Center for Energy of the AIT Austrian Institute of Technology.
URBiNAT | Urban Innovative and Inclusive Nature focuses on the regeneration and integration of deprived districts in urban development through innovative Nature-Based Solutions (NBS) – an Urban Inclusive Nature – ensuring sustainability and mobilising driving forces for social cohesion; specifically, on “public space” and on creation of new urban, social and nature relations with and between different neighbourhoods.
Creative Food Cycles enhances innovative and creative practices between food, architecture, and conviviality in a transnational and European perspective. New devices and rituals in urban food production, distribution, consumption, and disposition are designed and implemented, for extended and training and audience development, fostering the exchange of ideas and creatives in Europe. The approach merges new ways of design and digital interaction in a transdisciplinary way, exploring cultural, social, and economic innovations accelerated through the activities.
BUILD solutions aim to offer an educational programme engaging students, teachers and researchers and providing them with the necessary entrepreneurial skills and connections to bring intelligent living solutions for cities to the market, investigating biological systems, creating prototypes based on information technology and digital manufacturing, business plans and working with accelerators. Solutions which in turn can help us overcome the challenges posed by rapid urbanisation.
The Knowledge Alliance for Advanced Urbanism (KAAU), aimed to develop an educational and training platform, in partnership with HEIs and well-established industrial partners and companies. The objective of this platform is to offer participants the possibility to engage in a semi-professional environment, developing projects with the support and expertise of institutions that are commercially involved in their field of expertise. In this manner, it provides a potential jumping platform into future professional opportunities, while offering companies a fresh R+D environment where to propose new design challenges and applications.
IAAC, in partnership with the Centre for Central European Architecture in Prague and the University of Applied Arts Vienna, is coordinating the project Active Public Space, launched within the framework of the Creative Europe Programme.Europe’s towns and cities today face major challenges: demographic change and its implications for urban sprawl, environmental issues and climate change mitigation, maintaining social cohesion and the protection and development of architectural and cultural heritage.
Public Play Space promotes innovative and creative practices for the co-design of inclusive, cohesive and sustainable public spaces, through the use of games and digital technologies, in a transnational and European perspective, fostering the process of placemaking.