Quality ConferenceDesign For Manufacture -- Sustainable Architectural Design Joint-Studio with Shanghai Tongji University

Entering its 3rd year, Tongji-Cardiff Sustainable Architectural Design Joint-studio has brought students of different educational and cultural backgrounds together. This annual program introduces students to the global conditions of architectural practice, and challenges them to develop design strategy for conditions outside of their own culture. Moreover, it enables students to reality-live in a foreign country and to explore the difference. This year is no exceptional, students are invited to

Design for Manufacture:
Sustainability and Modern Method of Construction

8th - 21st Sept. 2008 in Cardiff, UK
29th Sept. – 12th Oct. in Shanghai, China

“Design for Manufacture” was a competition launched by the UK government in 2005, and the aim was to stimulate changes in the construction industry, to improve efficiency through modern methods of construction at a wide commercial scale, and to demonstrate the possibility to build good-quality with sound cost-effectiveness. Here, we borrow the concept and require students to propose a design strategy for sustainable housing in Shanghai through modern method of construction (MMC).

The two questions that students need to address are:

  • To what extent can MMC deliver sustainable housing in Shanghai?
  • How can MMC be delivered through a Design approach?  

A number of issues are needed to be taken into consideration:

  • Construction cost: when the labour cost is relative low, how MMC benefit housing construction in the financial language;
  • Different forms of MMC: which one is more suitable for Shanghai?
  • High-density and high-rise: how high can MMC reach?
  • Building materials: when timber is out of option, how to deliver MMC in steel, concrete or other material, and to reduce embodied energy;
  • Future-proof housing: how to future proof housing so it responses to energy cost increase and the consequence of Climate Change;
  • Design: how can design work with construction to create a sense of place and community?

During the four weeks of the program, students from both universities will work in teams, and a number of lectures and site-visits will be arranged in order to help students’ understanding on the subject. The final students’ design works will be linked with the newly established research centre for housing industrialisation in Shanghai, which is funded by Vanke, the biggest housing developer in China.

More information is available from

Yan Wang
Project Co-ordinator
Tel.: +29 2087 6397