Registration open for ‘De-Urbanized Epidemics’ redesign competition

by | Mar 27, 2020 | Featured Slider, Latest, News

London-based architecture firm De-Urban Design Studio has launched a new ideas competition called ‘De-Urbanized Epidemics: Re-Design of the Concept of Health in Relation to the Built Environment’.

The brief:

Urbanised humans are the most invasive species on Earth, consuming the majority of the planet’s resources. In an endless battle with nature, the urban fosters an unhealthy condition resulting in extinctions and planetary crises, endangering the livelihood of both humans and non-humans. Meanwhile, in the contemporary urbanised world, health is interpreted as the temporal psychological and physical condition of a human body. A permanent and holistic conception of (well)being and its widened territory embracing the vitality of the entire nature are often neglected. Health in the urban environment is inscribed in infrastructures, rather than being a generative concept for a nurturing habitat. The paradigm of our times is that of treatment – an act after the damage has been done, rather than wellbeing, a sustained state of healthiness.

The emergence of epidemics brings forth the significance of a new concept of health and wellbeing in relation to the built environment and beyond. Not a competition but rather a “coopetition”, this is a call for planetary solidarity to change the unsustainable and fragile “status quo” with speculative scenarios that explore health and wellbeing from the lens of ecology.

How can we describe and imagine a permanent mode of well being that is dependent and grounded on co-existence? What are the possible ways of “de-urbanising” the concept of health in relation to the built environment, with an emphasis on the issue of epidemics?

The “coopetitive” participation of diverse ideas will be shared widely, published as a book and will establish a ground for later studies and actions.

Competition schedule

  • Pre-registration deadline 15 April 2020
  • Questions deadline: 15 April 2020
  • Deadline for early-bird registration: 15 April 2020
  • Deadline for late registration: 20 May 2020
  • Submission deadline: 30 May 2020
  • Results announcement: 15 June 2020
  • Book publication: 15 September 2020


All “coopetitors” win in various ways and will contribute to the publication of the coopetition work and will receive a copy. The review team will also announce 10-20 non-pecuniary awards for the best ideas, texts, presentations and designs and select additional projects for the publication in the book. All the registration fees will fund the publication of the book.


Everyone, individual or as a team, is invited to contribute to this coopetition. However, multidisciplinary teams with diverse skills is encouraged, from designers to scientists.


Collage or illustration, bird’s eye view perspective, section or any other creative image (1-3 A4 portrait), and 200 words text.

Review team

  • Aslihan Demirtas: an architect and the principal of the interdisciplinary studio Aslihan Demirtas Architecture & Research Office and cofounder of Khora based in Istanbul.
  • Cristiano Luchetti: an architect, a researcher, and an educator. He is currently an assistant professor at the American University of Sharjah, UAE
  • Elizabeth Grace Tunka Bengil, a marine biologist, focusing on conservation of endangered species and habitats. She is also a permaculture practitioner.
  • Hossein Sadri: associate professor, architect, urban and permaculture designer, cofounder of De-Urban Design Studio based in London.
  • Melina Philippou: urban designer, researcher and educator. She is the programme director of the MIT Future Heritage Lab.

Download the competition brief here.

Article originally published on World Architecture Community.


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