Third symposium on “Flagship Architecture, Multinational Design Firms and the Urban Transformation of European Cities"

For the past three years this seminar series gathered experts in architecture, urban planning, urban and economic geography annually at the Villa Vigoni in Menaggio, Italy. The third and last of this series was held from 8th-9th of October 2019.


Participants from left to right: Alberto Vanolo, Uta Leconte, Michele Nastasi, Magda Bolzoni, Alain Thierstein, Alain Bourdin, Davide Ponzini, Maria Gravari-Barbas, Nadia Alaily-Mattar, Jan Silberberger, Johannes Dreher

Throughout the world, cities are increasingly developing exceptional architecture projects not only for their actual functions, but also for contributing to urban transformation. In this process, star architects and multi-national design, engineering and planning firms are intricately involved. This seminar series aimed at investigating that contested practice and its urban implications from various perspectives, which are currently still fractured between architecture, urban studies, geography, sociology, economics and tourism studies.

For the past three years this seminar series gathered experts in architecture, urban planning, urban and economic geography annually at the Villa Vigoni in Menaggio, Italy. The third and last of this series was held from 8th-9th of October 2019. It encompassed scholars from TUM, Politecnico di Milano, Paris 1 Pantéon-Sorbonne University, ETH Zurich, HafenCity University Hamburg (HCU) and the University of Turin. The participating scholars presented their current and forthcoming research and discussed possible joint research efforts.

The series were organized by Alain Thierstein, Nadia Alaily-Mattar (both Technical University of Munich), Davide Ponzini (Politecnico di Milano), Maria Gravari- Barbas and Francesca Cominelli (Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne University) and funded by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG), Fondation Maison des Sciences de l’Homme (FMSH) and Villa Vigoni.