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Syllabus for

Academic year
ARK324 - Design and planning for social inclusion
Design och planering för social integration
Syllabus adopted 2018-02-22 by Head of Programme (or corresponding)
Owner: MPDSD
22,5 Credits
Grading: TH - Five, Four, Three, Fail
Education cycle: Second-cycle
Major subject: Architecture

Course selection in architecture has a separate process. Please contact Director of Studies Anna Knutsson if you have questions.
Teaching language: English
Open for exchange students: Yes
Maximum participants: 30

Course module   Credit distribution   Examination dates
Sp1 Sp2 Sp3 Sp4 Summer course No Sp
0117 Project 9,5 c Grading: TH   9,5 c    
0217 Project 13,0 c Grading: TH   13,0 c    

In programs



Emilio da Cruz Brandao


ARK321   Suburbs: design and future challenges, part A, B, C ARK322   Suburbs: Design and future challenges ARK323   Design and planning for social inclusion


In order to be eligible for a second cycle course the applicant needs to fulfil the general and specific entry requirements of the programme that owns the course. (If the second cycle course is owned by a first cycle programme, second cycle entry requirements apply.)
Exemption from the eligibility requirement: Applicants enrolled in a programme at Chalmers where the course is included in the study programme are exempted from fulfilling these requirements.

Course specific prerequisites

Qualification for the master programme or Civil Environmental Engineering or Human Geography with a profile in planning or Bachelor of Science in Conservation, with major in Integrated Conservation of Built Environments.


The studio will give knowledge about challenges and opportunities for development in suburban areas built in the 1960s and 70s as part of the Swedish Million Programme. Social aspects of sustainable development and citizen participation are specific focus areas.

Learning outcomes (after completion of the course the student should be able to)

The studio prepares students to work as professionals with design, planning and reconstruction of suburban areas from the modernistic planning paradigm ­ linking social aspects to e.g. environmental, spatial, technical, aesthetic and economic aspects of sustainable development.
The learning objectives are here presented in five themes, which are equally valued.
1. Analysis 
Be able to describe and analyse the local context of a Swedish Million Programme area...

a) ...regarding its physical environment, including such as natural landscape, infrastructure, spatial configuration, buildings and historical development

b) ...regarding its sociocultural characteristics, including such as demographic patterns, cultural identities, living conditions, governance and social networks

c) ...taking into account the potential differences in perspectives between different groups among people living and working in the area, planners and other relevant actors
d) ...relating to important global trends and issues, such as segregation, gender inequalities, ethnic discrimination and climate change
2. Participatory tools and methods 
Be able to carry out planning and design projects in collaboration with citizens, employees and other local actors...

a) ...choosing/(re)designing appropriate participatory tools and methods

b) ...applying, examining and analysing these tools and methods as part of the project work
3. Design methodology and skills
Be able to design a proposal that aims to contribute to sustainable development in the studied area...

a) ...emphasising social and cultural aspects and the improvement of living/working conditions 
b) ...taking departure in existing local conditions (both physical and sociocultural)

c) ...using knowledge and skills related to the profession of architects, planners, designers, engineers, antiquarians, etcetera
4. Presentation and communication 
Be able to communicate the work in an good way to a broad target group of local and external actors...

a) an oral stage presentation

b) an exhibition with posters and optionally models and other exhibition materials
5. Critical reflection 
Be able to analyse and reflect critically upon your own practice in your project work...

a) ...regarding your role in the project group

b) ...regarding your project work in relation to the local community

c) ...regarding your design proposal and such as potential conflicts between different aspects of sustainability, and between different stakeholders' interests


Description of the studio
Through a series of exercises, lectures, seminars and workshops, this design studio elaborates with the challenges for built environment professionals (architects, designers, planners, engineers, antiquarians, etc.) to contribute to sustainable development in Million Programme areas, linking social aspects to e.g. environmental, technical, aesthetic, economic aspects. The assignments include different methods to analyse the studied area, its places, life and functions, some of them in close collaboration with people living or working there. There is a specific focus on introducing and practicing different methods for citizen participation, as an important dimension of working for social inclusion.
The rich programme with lectures, seminars and workshops involve practitioners and researchers with expertise in the studio's key themes, many with local connection but also international guests.
The main task is the project work, which is carried out in small groups. The studio projects are carefully selected to connect to real projects and give the students possibilities to develop skills for their future professions. The studio’s facilities are located in a local context, hitherto in Hammarkullen, which provides a unique possibility for the students to get a very close relation to one area representing the studio's context.
Expected deliveries are a) presentation of results from a series of minor exercises; b) posters, models and different types of graphical material (illustrations, drawings, diagrams, etc.) and media presenting the studio project; c) a logbook from each project group collecting a selection of core project material regarding background, purpose, methods, the project process, results and an elaborated discussion; d) an oral presentation and exhibition in the study area; and e) an individual written reflection on the work in relation to the studio's themes and thoughts about the students’ future professions.
You can find previous years' material at »«.


This is a full­time study course (40 hours a week) and it consists of lectures, seminars, workshops, exercises, literature studies, project work, presentation and critique. This is a preliminary brief overview of the curriculum, which includes:

­ Impressions; 
­ Observations, analysis and understandings;

­ Reflections and engagement in subjects;
­ Focus and delimitation;
- Dialogue and participation;
- Experiment, improvise, co-design, co-create;
­ Project work in smaller groups;
­ Joint exhibition, oral presentations, critique, examination; 
­ Critical reflection, feedback.
The course is divided into three parts following the course’s motto “TUNE IN + IMPROVISE + PERFORM”. During the first 2-3 weeks (the TUNE IN part) you will learn about Hammarkullen, the North-eastern districts of Gothenburg and other Million Programme areas – the local settings for the master studio – and the people living and working there. During this period, you will also gradually develop knowledge and understanding of the course’s subjects that you will approach during the long project work. On the second week, you will start to work with your projects in smaller groups through the development of a project plan (design of a strategy and a time-plan for how you will work) and an analysis phase. On the latter, you will focus on how you, in your future profession, can work with different tools in order to understand and know an area. This includes knowledge of both the physical, the economical, the cultural and the social environments as well as a broader understanding of the city’s different type of urban typologies.
In the next period (IMPROVISE), during 2-3 weeks, the lectures and workshops given will intensively introduce to and approach dialogue and participatory methods within architecture and planning. At the same time, in your project work you will be planning and designing your participatory processes. This period has a strong focus on the moderation of dialogue processes, the collaboration with the closest stakeholders, users, and other directly interested actors for each specific project and respective problem formulation. Such processes are rarely linear and skills such as re-planning, reflection, adaptation and improvisation in combination with your creative approach to all types of encounters will help you to reach your project’s design purpose, formulations and guidelines. This period ends with a midterm critique moment of the current state of the project work.
The final part of the studio is mainly related to the collaborative design part of your project work and your chosen working processes (PERFORM). During these last 7-8 weeks, you will work with your projects designs and develop them in close contact with citizens, organisations and other stakeholders, active and involved in the areas where your projects will be implemented. You will therefore be working within different levels of co-design methods and the main focus of your work will rely on the design outcome. During the last weeks of this period you will make a public presentation of your work for citizens and other stakeholders – this presentation takes place in the projects’ area. This is an important part of this studio, since we do not only want their feedback, but also to give something back to the community and the involved stakeholders. Finally, a second presentation of your projects will take place at Chalmers and will be discussed by invited external critics, in order for you to get feedback on the entire process.
Lectures, literature studies, seminars and workshops, all aim to support your learning process, to give knowledge and create understanding about challenges and opportunities for sustainable development in Swedish Million Programme areas. In a specific assignment labelled Individual Critical Reflection, you will, with the help from literature, seminars and workshops, be given the task to develop your own critical written reflection about your learning process throughout the course, how your project proceeded and how your professional role has developed. This paper will be briefly discussed after the Christmas leave in a final seminar with the entire group.
The number of participants in the studio is limited. Students must a) apply through ordinary procedure and b) show up at the first day of the course. If the number of students fulfilling these two requirements is more than the allowed number of participants, priority will be given to students from the master programme Design for Sustainable Development (Chalmers University of Technology). Students who fail to attend from the first day of the course risk difficulties in catching up. Exceptions need to be cleared with the examiner in advance. For further information about admission and registration, please contact Studentcentrum in the main library at Chalmers.
Studio Location
The course takes place mainly in the study area of Hammarkullen, in the studio’s facilities at the Professional Educational Center Angered, PUA (the former Centre for Urban Studies), which is a relatively new research and education centre run by the University of Gothenburg in collaboration with Chalmers Architecture and the city’s District Management Office of Angered ( During the project work phase, some of the groups may be working in other areas – these groups will possibly be provided with working spaces closer to their respective project sites.

The studio starts in the end of September (study period 1) and finishes in January (study period 2). Definite information about time and place will be available at PingPong ( under the title ARK323 at least one week before the studio starts. Students get access to the course material after admission and registration.


A comprehensive literature list will be available on PingPong when the studio starts

Examination including compulsory elements

To pass the course and receive a grade, you need:
- Presence at scheduled activities is required. Some absence can be accepted if there are legitimate reasons (e.g. sickness). In other cases, supplementary assignments have to be handed in (e.g. written reviews on literature);
- Active participation at seminars, workshops and in group work;
- Course exercises of sufficient quality (i.e. that fulfils the course objectives and presentation requirements);
- Delayed submission of hand-ins will negatively influence the grades;
- Electronic course evaluations should be filled in.
Criteria for grading (3, 4 or 5) is found in the Assessment and Grading table available in the course folder on PingPong.

Page manager Published: Mon 28 Nov 2016.