Building adequate housing is a pressing issue worldwide. With close to a billion people currently living in slums, accommodating a growing population, and improving dwelling conditions is a critical issue for society.

This challenge cannot be solved with a one-size-fits-all approach. Every city, region and country demand their own housing models and prototypes. That’s why housing design needs to negotiate many aspects simultaneously to achieve sustainable urban environments and inclusive dwelling communities.

This course uncovers how social, economic and environmental factors are interrelated in the design of housing settlements. For this, the course dives into three key aspects that anyone involved in housing design should take into consideration: time, environment, and community. Each of these aspects will be examined through a specific design approach, respectively:

  • Incrementality: how dwelling environments should be able to accommodate growth and change through time.
  • Typology Mix: how design can be responsive to different patterns of inhabitation, aspirations and cultural backgrounds, creating inclusive dwelling environments.
  • Clustering: what methods and strategies can shape the association of dwelling units in order to create meaningful communities.

In this course, each of these themes will be discussed in detail and exemplified by a new analytical approach to award-winning housing projects developed in different geopolitical contexts.

While each of these themes will examine aspects related to the design decision-making process, the course aims at addressing concerns that go beyond the design disciplines. Hence, regardless of background or level of expertise, this course will introduce learners to the core issues and challenges of global housing design, using examples from different regions.

This course has been developed by¬†TU Delft’s Faculty of Architecture and the Built Environment in collaboration with the Aga Khan Trust for Culture (AKTC). It offers a unique combination of videos, documentation of key case studies, animations, and feedback sessions. We will discuss options for affordable housing design, with a particular focus on low- and middle-income countries. We will take you through the intricacies of designing “housing for the large number”, as well as inspire you to understand your own context and the housing challenges you might be facing.

  • Identify social practices and spatial configurations that determine the qualities of existing dwelling communities.
  • Understand how incrementality, typology mix and clustering can become key design approaches in enhancing the living conditions of urban communities.
  • Recognize design approaches that can contribute to the development of adequate housing neighbourhoods.
  • Compare the characteristics of housing schemes designed by different architects taking account of different social, political and geographical contexts.
  • Evaluate the performance of dwelling communities taking into consideration the relation between social, economic and environmental factors.
  • Formulate a design hypothesis and/or a managerial strategy to develop an inclusive dwelling community based on incrementality, typology mix and clustering.
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Global Housing Design by TU Delft OpenCourseWare is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.
Based on a work at https://online-learning.tudelft.nl/courses/global-housing-design/
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