052-1153-23L  Architectural Design V-IX: Reproducing Care (A.Puigjaner)

SemesterAutumn Semester 2023
LecturersA. Puigjaner
Periodicityevery semester recurring course
Language of instructionEnglish
CommentPlease register (Link) only after the internal enrolment for the design classes (see Link).

Project grading at semester end is based on the list of enrolments on 1.11.2023 (valuation date) only. This is the ultimate deadline to unsubscribe or enroll for the studio.


052-1153-23 UArchitectural Design V-IX: Reproducing Care (A.Puigjaner)
No course 24./25.10. (seminar week).
16 hrs
Tue09:45-17:30HIL G 75 »
Wed08:00-17:30HIL G 75 »
A. Puigjaner

Catalogue data

AbstractThe Architecture and Care design studio will address the spaces where human reproduction takes place. Gendered constructs around reproduction have been and still are central practices to the ways we structure social realities. Architecture and space have historically contributed to promoting and perpetuating sexist social models around reproductive labour and its associated care practices.
Formulating clear and precise questions, using abstract ideas to interpret information, considering diverse points of view, reaching well-reasoned conclusions, and testing alternative outcomes. Performing qualitative and quantitative architectural research and translating it into an architectural language. Gathering, assessing, recording, and comparatively evaluating relevant information and performance in order to support conclusions.

Designing responding to territories of care and their characteristics, including urban context and historical fabric, soil, topography, ecology, climate, economy… Using formal, organisational, social, and environmental principles and informing two- and three-dimensional design. Understanding construction systems and their coherent formalisation. Considering the environmental impact and the reuse of the design.

Writing, performing, and speaking effectively about an architectural design, using representational media appropriate for both the profession and for a wider audience. Making clear architectural drawings and constructing props at different scales that illustrate and communicate an architectural research and design technically, experientially, and aesthetically.
ContentIn Switzerland, official data shows that nowadays the burdens of child-rearing still predominantly fall upon women, with 70 percent expressing concerns that having a child will impact on their careers. There are a myriad of reasons for the country’s declining birth rates – for instance a stronger focus on women’s careers, challenging socio-economic conditions, and the availability of contraception – and architecture is one of them: urbanisation leading to smaller living spaces and the dispersion of support networks, the scarcity of nearby public care facilities, and the lack of adequate spaces for shared forms of care beyond the domestic sphere of the nuclear family. Public relief, despite being remarkably generous in comparison to other countries, is still insufficient: fertility treatments like IVF are not covered by insurance – while three percent of children born were concieved in vitro – child care costs are only partially subsidised, etc. Unsurprisingly, people who can become pregnant are having less and less children and, if so, much later in their life. In this context, what can the role of architecture be?

In this design course, we will imagine architectures that support alternative reproduction practices at different stages, from fertility treatments to upbringing. Speculating with new programmes and institutions, we will design collective spaces that promote and visualise shared forms of reproductive care. In the present context, the division between productive and reproductive labour, the spaces it takes place in, and the bodies that carry it out, are once again being reshaped. The limits of the domestic are blurring, the home is no longer necessarily a space for care; instead, it is a transient, productive, and networked space. On the other hand, public and collective spaces can shelter former domestic activities and become spaces for care through different bodies (human and non-human), technologies, and strategies at multiple scales.

Addressing architecture from the urban to the body, the course aims to develop a comprehensive understanding of the relationship between design and reproduction in Switzerland. We will understand dependency as a positive kin, and propose programmes and spaces that support sharing reproductive labour in transversal ways. This realignment can contribute to generating new forms of balance, ones in which we stop “caring for” and start “caring with” as a form of interdependence. We will look at the body – its spaces, contexts and rituals – as a starting point for an architectural and aesthetic proposal at multiple scales. The students will be asked to design avoiding former forms of spatial oppression and exploitation and, instead, explore the paths of otherness, wildness, diversity, complexity, and the impractical. The final objective is to propose institutions providing inclusive spaces for reproductive futures based on collective kinship.
Prerequisites / NoticeOnly group work.

Introduction: September 19th, 10am, HIL E 70.5
Intermediate crits: October 10th, November 21st / 22nd
Final crits: December 21st / 22nd

CHF 250.-- per student (estimated costs, without possible seminar week costs)
Subject-specific CompetenciesConcepts and Theoriesassessed
Method-specific CompetenciesAnalytical Competenciesassessed
Social CompetenciesCommunicationassessed
Cooperation and Teamworkassessed
Leadership and Responsibilityassessed
Self-presentation and Social Influence assessed
Sensitivity to Diversityassessed
Personal CompetenciesAdaptability and Flexibilityassessed
Creative Thinkingassessed
Critical Thinkingassessed
Integrity and Work Ethicsassessed
Self-awareness and Self-reflection assessed
Self-direction and Self-management fostered

Performance assessment

Performance assessment information (valid until the course unit is held again)
Performance assessment as a semester course
ECTS credits14 credits
ExaminersA. Puigjaner
Typegraded semester performance
Language of examinationEnglish
RepetitionRepetition possible without re-enrolling for the course unit.
Additional information on mode of examinationProject grading at semester end is based on the list of enrolments only. Ultimate deadline to unsubscribe or enroll for the studio is 1.11.2023, 24:00 h.

Learning materials

No public learning materials available.
Only public learning materials are listed.


No information on groups available.


There are no additional restrictions for the registration.

Offered in

Architecture BachelorArchitectural Design (from 5. Semester on)WInformation