Master's Degree in Advanced Design and Digital Architecture

ELISAVA Barcelona School of Design and Engineering

Program Description

Master's Degree in Advanced Design and Digital Architecture

ELISAVA Barcelona School of Design and Engineering

Master's Degree in Advanced Design and Digital Architecture

Degree awarded by Pompeu Fabra University (UPF) and ELISAVA Barcelona School of Design and Engineering

There is growing interest in finding guidelines in living systems to help us understand new forms of designing. On occasion, this interest makes the mistake of wishing to imbue designs with a veneer of new organic ways, imitating natural forms, perhaps unconsciously aided by the incredible digital modeling resources we are increasingly able to master.

This could not be further from our intentions at the BioDesign laboratory (ADDA). We focus our interest on observing how biological organisms achieve complex emergent structures from simple components. The structures and forms generated by natural systems are analyzed and understood as hierarchical organizations of very simple components (from the smallest to the largest), in which the properties arising in an emergent manner are rather more than the sum of the parts.

In our constantly developing society, with its demanding market, the use of new production technologies in fields such as engineering is becoming more frequent, and research is conducted to create state-of-the-art materials, such as composites, which open up new possibilities of use and performance, and contain the logic of living materials.

Perhaps all this leads us to reflect on the issues to be addressed by contemporary architecture. Should a building be a static object - rigid and airtight - with var­ious gadgets for controlling light, sound and tempera­ture? Or should it rather be an articulated system, ca­pable of constantly interacting with its environment and somehow receiving information which it then reprocesses to respond to this stimulus in a process of self-adjustment? In other words, should a building be an open, dynamic, “living” system instead?

And also, should the act of design be based on a static idea or rather should be a iterative computational process that by inductive method can measure and produce many different formal and programmatic answers to the same problem, selecting at the end the best of the multiple variations.

We will plunge into all these issues to learn, develop and innovate in a new way of doing architecture.


In the field of architecture, even more rightly, we are forced to regain this sensitivity in observation and research, and learn the lesson of nature on the act of formalizing and metabolizing. Our objective is to learn and explore this knowledge to then transfer it and apply it to the design process of architecture and spaces.

Aimed at

Architects. Engineers. Industrial Designers. Interior Designers. Product designers. Artists working in various media. Landscapers.

Starting Data

One edition per year from September to July

This school offers programs in:
  • English

Last updated January 27, 2016
Duration & Price
This course is Campus based
Start Date
Start date
Sept. 2017
1 year
Full time
Start date Sept. 2017
Spain Barcelona
Application deadline Request Info
End date Request Info
Duration 1 year
Price Request Info