Circular Strategies

Towards a sustainable built environment

The climate crisis and scarcity of resources are forcing us to reduce the ecological footprint of architecture and urban development, but this obligation also opens up new opportunities for cultural expression. The principles of circular economy play an important role in approaches to sustainable architecture. The symposium will address this topic on different scales - from building components to the urban fabric - and under two aspects: How can existing materials, buildings and urban areas be adapted and reused, and how can components, architectural objects and cities be designed for future reuse and transformation? International experts from the fields of architecture and social ecology will present various concepts and discuss them with the audience.

Due to the Covid-19 regulations this symposium will be streamed online via Zoom and Youtube.

09:30 – 11:00 CET

  • Welcome and opening
    Gerald Bast, Rector of the University of Applied Arts Vienna
  • Why Circular Strategies?
    Karin Raith, University of Applied Arts Vienna
  • Energy Revolutions and Material Cycling in Earth and Human History
    Helga Weisz, Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research and Humboldt-University Berlin, Germany
  • The Nature of Building
    Harquitectes, Sabadell/Barcelona, Spain

11:30 – 13:00 CET
SESSION 1 / Small Scale
: Reuse of building components, design of components for reuse
  • Re:use, Experimental Approach and Practical Application
    Carola Stabauer, enster, Harvest MAP, TU Wien, Austria
  • Form follows availability – Designing Load-bearing Structures through Component Reuse
    Jan Brütting, EPFL, Lausanne, Switzerland
  • Urban Mining Design: Circular Economy Building Strategy
    Annette Hillebrandt, Prof. of Construction | Design | Material, Bergische Universität Wuppertal, Germany
Panel discussion with Lukas Allner (University of Applied Arts Vienna), Carola Stabauer, Jan Brütting and Annette Hillebrandt 

13:00 – 14:00 CET
Lunch break

14:00 – 15:30 CET
/ Medium Scale: Reuse of Buildings, Design of Buildings for Reuse
  • Three Reuse Projects in Pearl River Delta
    Ying Jiang, O-Office Architects, Guongzhou, China
  • It’s Already There – Augmenting Matter and Meaning through Architectural Reuse
    Gert Kwekkeboom, Civic Architects, Amsterdam, Netherlands
  • Architectonic Lifecycle Management
    Muck Petzet, München/Berlin, Germany
Panel discussion with Bernhard Sommer (University of Applied Arts Vienna), Ying Jiang, Gert Kwekkeboom and Muck Petzet

16:00 – 17:30 CET
SESSION 3 / Large Scale:
Reuse of Urban Areas, Design of Urban Areas for Reuse
  • The Role of Material Stock Patterns for Societies’ Resource Use and Well-Being
    Helmut Haberl, Institute of Social Ecology, University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna, Austria
  • Masterplanning the Adaptive City
    Sergio Porta, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, Scotland
  • The City Territory as a Renewable Resource
    Paola Viganò, Milano/Brussels, EPFL Lausanne and IUAV Venice
Panel discussion with Andrea Börner (University of Applied Arts Vienna), Helmut Haberl, Sergio Porta, and Paola Viganò

Moderated by Wojciech Czaja, author and journalist, Vienna.

This event is a cooperation with the Vienna Design Week.

You can join us via Zoom:
Meeting ID: 977 8922 7836
Or via Youtube-Livestream:

Concept and organisation: Karin Raith and Lukas Allner, Building Construction Department at the Institute of Architecture, University of Applied Arts Vienna.

University of Applied Arts Vienna
1010 Wien, Oskar-Kokoschka-Platz 2

iD town
"iD town", conversion of a disused printing and dyeing plant into an art district in Guangdong province (China) by O-office architects, Guangzhou