Topics for the 2A Institute for online Education of Architecture and Design in the Field of Urban Development  

Compact Courses: 
  • Learning from Indigenous technologies
  • Ecological upgrading: Renaturising of Waterways
  • Urban Greening
  • The Role and the importance of Neighborhoods for the quality of life in the cities
  • Keeping mixed use, diversity and affordability in Regeneration of Urban Areas


 Learning from Indigenous technologies

Societies have learned to live in harmony with their geographical and their natural surroundings and developed technologies to build their houses and cities with local resources and in accordance to their beliefs and with their possibilities, through thousands of years.

To learn from these indigenous technologies and to recontextualize them today could be the wisest method to achieve a better performance of our buildings in harmony with nature and in respect for the cultures.

Shadegan Pond, Khouzestan, IRI,

Bamboo structure of a Mozif, Khusistan, IRI,



 Ecological upgrading: Renaturising of Waterways

Rivers and streams are Biotopes for animals, recreational areas for people and they influence the climate. In many areas and countries riverbeds have been straightened, barriers have been built on them, and have been covered for the sake of getting better performance for usage and more profitability. Renaturizing these areas through ecological measures is a step towards getting a better climate, better living environments for people and animals.

In Austria this topic has been introduced in the recent program of the ministry of agriculture which is refunding 60% of the costs of this improvements to the communities.

Also manmade water sources need to be taken care of. In Iran Qanats which have been listed on the UNESCO world heritage are steadily being destroyed and disconnected through the excavations under the building blocks to make room for parking vehicles and for foundations of massive buildings. It should be ways to avoid the destruction of such vital and ecological water supply without stifling progress.

Renaturising of Naarn, Kaindlau, Upper Austria, 2017. Image: Land OÖ, Gewässerbezirk Linz

Urban Greening 

All over the world the cities are growing and more people are leaving the countryside to live in the cities, causing more traffic and more pollution. Greening the cities is a solution for cleaning the air, saving energy, bringing back biodiversity and wildlife into the cities and improve the quality of living altogether.

This can be achieved by reducing the asphalted areas of remote roads and parking lots and promoting bicycles and shared vehicles, and adding greenery in public areas as much as possible, and greening the facades and rooftops of the buildings, installing  sun collectors, reusing the wastewater and……

China’s Forest City in Guangxi Region will counter air pollution. Image: Stefano Boeri Architetti

Hundertwasserhaus, one of the first green buildings in Vienna designed 1983-85 by the artist Friedensreich Hundertwasser.  Image: Wikipedia

 The Role and the importance of Neighborhoods for the quality of life in the cities

Today we might define a neighborhood rather by its material aspects than the immaterial ones such as the relationships between the neighbors, the playing ceremonies of the children, or the rituals of meeting at the local bakery or the fountain. Our neighborhoods and what we relate to are rather defined by their material aspects, the shape of the buildings, the signs the green areas, or landmarks.

The interaction between the neighbors is limited to what is absolutely unavoidable. Would it still be possible to create a new concept of neighborhood which takes into account the current way of life and still provides something special for that part of which the inhabitants could be proud of and to share with each other?

neighborhood in Yasuj, IRI,


Keeping mixed use, diversity and affordability in Regeneration of Urban Areas

 By bringing new impulses into an area to ignite Revitalization planners should instruct policies to guarantee the continuity of its social and functional diversity and also preventing the total gentrification of the area.

Even in completely new neighborhoods, there should be strategies to ensure the success and survival of the planned multifunctional use for inhabitants with different backgrounds, education, age, ethnicity and level of income.


Neighborhood in Rasht, IRI,