Method & Content

Since 2020, the Fondation Braillard Architectes (FBA), its partners and collaborators organize the international Transition Workshop. The Workshop aims at encouraging professional interactions and understanding the scale and methods for the ecological transition of cities in the face of climate emergency. 

The Transition Workshop 2022 proposes a real involvement in the reinvention of the Geneva agglomeration – one of the most advanced and innovative metropolises in the world. In collaboration with internationally renowned experts and regional policy makers, participants are invited to explore methods, tools and processes to accelerate the socio-ecological and technological transition of cities towards decarbonisation. 

Following the success of the new formula, the Workshop is held in two parts: the first one is online learning and offers a strong theoretical programme, the second one is entirely dedicated to group work on-site. The modules can be taken separately. 

 

CONTEXT AND VISION 

The transition is now. 

Cities, territories and their citizens are committed to a change in lifestyles, production, mobility and communication. 

Among them, architects, urban planners, administrators as well as businesses aspire to a new project for the 21st century. This new generation of motivated and well-trained professionals will act collectively as agents of change, to support and inspire the movement towards sustainable development in the urban world and its rural corollary. 

To support this professional and disciplinary transition, it becomes imperative to develop a new cycle of knowledge and know-how. This will have the effect of creating and/or accelerate ecological transition projects. Cities and territories are thus in the process of developing a virtuous circle in terms of space, society and aesthetics, based on scientific data, thus engaging the fight against global warming.  

 

STRATEGIC FRAMEWORK 

The Transition Workshop creates an innovative educational framework to accelerate the transition of cities through a new generation of architects, designers and policy makers. 

  • The Transition Workshop is conceived within the framework of The Eco-Century Project® which calls for a radical renewal of the principles, methods, theories and tools of urban planning to address the ecological imperative. 
  • The Transition Workshop is aligned with the sustainable development goals promoted by the United Nations. 
  • The Greater Geneva is an ideal setting for the study of environmental action through architectural, urban and landscape design.
  • The programme is developed in the excellent educational context of Lake Geneva and Switzerland. 
  • A network of important public and private partners actively supports the Workshop. 

The Transition Workshop is designed as a learning experience for cross-scalar strategies, focused on stakeholder cooperation and concrete results, at the cutting edge of design, technology and collective action.

OBJECTIVES

The Transition workshop offers a new educational framework to accelerate the transition of cities through projects. 

This interdisciplinary curriculum is designed to: 

– Raise awareness of sustainable development among professionals and future professionals in the city. 

– Develop and transmit design tools and methods for climate resilient cities and buildings. 

– Equip a new generation of professionals with the skills to build, rehabilitate, preserve and reuse while protecting the environment. 

SCOPE

The challenge is global – and the actions are local, in the here and now. We focus on a site in central Geneva, as means to engage the future of the Greater Geneva and its wider region. We work within the practical framework of the urban area and embrace all major regional agents, stakeholders and constituent institutions. We do it so reflectively, and impart methods to be applied in any real setting, circumstances and environment. 

During the previous sessions, the sites of Marronniers (Grand-Saconnex) and petrol silos in Vernier served as project sites.

 

 EXPECTED OUTCOME  

The Transition Workshop 2022 offers: 

  • to Master students: a concise introduction to the issues and dimensions of ecological transition by design; 
  • doctoral students: a cross-disciplinary overview to data and tools for the analysis of climate emergencies in the built environment; 
  • to young professionals: new tools for the design of the ecological transition at all scales; 
  • to administrators: strategic foresight and auditing frameworks for the zero carbon trajectories of cities. 

 

WORK METHOD

The workshop is being held in two stages: the first in online and offering a sustained theoretical program, the second being entirely devoted to group work on-site.  

1. Theory Masterclass, online (March 10th – July 7th 2022)

The Transition Workshop aims to create a community of skills and spirit. All courses and seminars are organized to be delivered in distance, with the online presence of all participants. If, however, calendar conflicts prevent the follow-up, the FBA may transmit the content to the participants concerned on a deferred basis.

If you wish to follow only certain courses of the Theory Masterclass, you can choose them individually on the site get.braillard.ch

2. Design Studio (case study), on-site (July 11th – July 22nd 2022)

Through case studies in the Canton of Geneva and its international environment, we actively respond to the need for responsible, rapid and informed action to transform buildings and cities into sober, resilient and bio-diversified places, for life, solidarity and creativity. Design and construction methods are radically revisited in an open, collaborative and visionary way, well in the spirit of the Geneva framework. The Geneva site chosen for the on-site work will be revealed during the Info Sessions 

 

PROJECT CATEGORIES

Actors and local communities are making their study cases and knowledge available as catalysors to go further towards the decarbonisation of our built framework in terms of: 

  • Construction methods and materials 
  • Landscape and biodiversity management 
  • Production/consumption of energy and other resources 
  • Infrastructure and mobility models 
  • Urban lifestyles: work, leisure, production, consumption 
  • Urban agriculture, permaculture and gardening 
  • Citizen participation 

  

CONTENTS & SCALES

Transition contents: 

  • Theory and architectural, urban and landscape project frameworks 
  • Environment and resources management 
  • Economy and cities development 
  • Anthropology and habitat sociology 

The scales of the ecological transition project: 

  • Buildings and neighbourhoods 
  • Landscapes and metropolitan regions 

 

THE 2022 PROJECT

This year’s Transition Workshop focuses on the critical issues of Geneva’s changing landscape.
The ecological transition requires a new approach to the planning and design of time-space sequences. Nature, culture(s) and habitat(s) are emerging as powerful vectors for decarbonisation and resilience of cities and the countryside.

The Transition Workshop 2022 focuses on the crucial issue of the urbanisation of increasingly large parts of our regions, such as the rural Geneva commune of Perly-Certoux, and its future development challenges. Far from imposing a single point of view, the Design Workshop will point out the matrix of possibilities, both in terms of landscape protection, local agriculture and densification, without forgetting the crucial issues of biodiversity, mobility and social participation. All of these themes will be discussed with public and private stakeholders, under the prism of decarbonisation and resilience, according to the strategic foresight methods developed by the Fondation Braillard Architectes in the framework of The Eco-Century Project®. The Workshop will allow participants to project space-time sequences that are conducive to the Ecological Transition, in order to submit them to the critical and benevolent gaze of experts and stakeholders.

 

WORKPLACES

The Transition Workshops are generously hosted in the premises of the SIG spaces.

SIG Worksite, Genève

 

Work bubble © SIG 2020
Locaux SIG © SIG 2020
Kitchen © SIG 2020
Locaux SIG © SIG 2020