M.Des. in Heritage Design, Planning & Management

Srishti Institute of Art, Design and Technology

Program Description

M.Des. in Heritage Design, Planning & Management

Srishti Institute of Art, Design and Technology

M.Des. in Heritage Design, Planning & Management

dli-03Identification of significant elements of architecture, buildings, sites – natural and cultural in Belur – academic exercise undertaken by Srishti student as part of SUI-Srishti Collaborative (Source: SUI-Srishti; Dr. Jyoti Hosagrahar) In a fast changing and rapidly globalizing world, the uniqueness and identity of place are becoming an important and non-renewable resource. Cultural and natural heritage are well-springs for both traditional and contemporary creative practices rooted in locality and place. How do we identify and assess the cultural (tangible and intangible) and environmental heritage of a place? How do we manage and protect these valuable resources? How can we improve such places and benefit their communities in ways that are compatible with the heritage values? How can places, their cultural and natural assets inform and inspire design and creative practices? How can we support local communities to manage their inheritance? Open to students in all design disciplines, the course aims to infuse a deep understanding of built and intangible cultural heritage and the natural environment in design. And enrich, interpret, plan, and integrate heritage places with sensitive and compatible design. The Master of Design in Heritage Design, Planning, and Management prepares students with the skills, knowledge, and tools to identify, document, evaluate, protect, manage, interpret cultural and natural heritage. They will plan creative solutions with minimal and sustainable interventions to improve basic infrastructure, presentation of places and their uniqueness to the benefit of local communities. Students also learn to derive knowledge and principles of design from cultural and natural heritage places to explore new ways that contemporary creative practices including architecture and urban design can be informed and enriched by history, culture, ecology, tradition, community, and craft. The program is a vibrant multidisciplinary platform for theoretical and practical engagement in context-specific fieldwork to engage a range of academic studies from architecture and urban design to the humanities, cultural geography, management, entrepreneurship, and tourism. The course is a program of the UNESCO Chair in Culture, Habitat, and Sustainable Development at Srishti. As such, students will gain familiarity with international (and national) norms and standards in heritage management including the World Heritage Convention. They will also explore new approaches to managing and designing with heritage to benefit local communities, plan better places, and nurture cultural entrepreneurship compatible with heritage values of particular places.


The program is informed by the following learning disciplines:

  • Architecture and Urban Design
  • Systems Design
  • Curatorial Practices
  • Research – Art and Design
  • Ecology and Environment
  • Urban and Regional Planning

Research and Collaboration

Students have opportunities to work within the academic structures and/or work across the following centers and labs:

  • UNESCO Chair
  • Srishti Films
  • Design+Environment+Law Laboratory (DEL Laboratory)
  • Bangalore Human Sciences Initiatives (BHSI)
  • Center for Public History (CPH)
  • The Kabir Project

dli-03?Cultural heritage mapping of Belur – assessing and mapping significance – academic exercise undertaken by Srishti student as part of SUI-Srishti Collaborative (Source: SUI-Srishti; Dr. Jyoti Hosagrahar)

Key Values

  • Cultural and natural heritage are valuable non-renewable resources
  • The most important heritage values of cultural and natural heritage elements must be protected, nurtured, and presented according to international norms and standards.
  • Contemporary design and planning rooted in and compatible with key cultural and natural heritage and place identity promote sustainable development.

Course structure

  1. Studios encourage active, contextual learning where students develop core disciplinary skills and knowledge. Studios facilitate collaborative and creative design solutions to complex, open-ended problems
  2. Workshops provide intense learning experiences in making and doing, across the different disciplines.
  3. Internship with an industry or a design studio is compulsory for students at the end of 1st year for M.Des.
  4. Self Initiated Project is an end of the semester challenge that allows the student to engage in research / enquiry or design based projects. Students begin by writing their project proposal and defining the scope of their project and they are mentored by faculty / design professionals.
  5. Electives are liberal arts courses aimed to cultivate intellectual and reflective abilities in students and motivate them to probe deeper and approach their design process in a holistic manner.
  6. Capstone Project is the culmination of the research, capabilities and knowledge gained over the last three semesters. Students are required to submit their design output and a mandated thesis document. Students are mentored during this final project and go through seminars to get feedback from faculty and peer groups


On successful completion of the course, graduates will have a specialization in heritage related design and planning in a range of design disciplines from architecture, urban design, and planning to visual communication, textiles, products and systems, and film (based on the student’s base discipline). Further, students would acquire the following capabilities: Knowledge and Understanding:

  • Conceptual clarity around what and why to preserve heritage and promote heritage compatible development
  • An understanding of key international norms and standards around protection and management of cultural and natural heritage

Communication Skills:

  • Understanding of how to design and plan at different scales while also nurturing and protecting heritage
  • Specific heritage related skills such as inventorying and assessment of threats, deriving design principles from study of heritage resources.
  • Familiarity with professional writing such as grants proposals and reports

Practitioner Skills:

  • Understanding of how to design and plan places to protect heritage.
  • Ability to design not only as individual designer but also as part of a multidisciplinary group and with local community.


The M. Des in Heritage Design, Planning, & Management would open up the following opportunities to successful graduates:

  • Employment in heritage conservation related fields
  • Enhanced employment opportunities with specialization and refinement in heritage compatible design in a wide variety of creative professional practices from architecture, urban design, and planning to visual communication, textiles, products and systems, and film (based on the student’s base discipline).
  • Employment in research and development organizations, NGOs & social enterprises working in any field of built heritage, crafts, textile, music, dance, theater, or contemporary creative practices.
  • Employment with hospitality businesses and organizations focused on cultural tourism and ecotourism.
  • Employment with museums and galleries
  • Become a design entrepreneur
  • Start up a creative enterprise
  • Become an academic in a design program


This course is led by Ishita Shah.
For further information, kindly email Ishita Shah at ishita.shah@srishti.ac.in

This school offers programs in:
  • English

Last updated November 27, 2017
Duration & Price
This course is Campus based
Start Date
Start date
July 2018
2 years
Full time
India - Bangalore, Karnataka
Start date: July 2018
Application deadline Request Info
End date Request Info
July 2018
India - Bangalore, Karnataka
Application deadline Request Info
End date Request Info