Breaking boundaries: Competition Culture in Europe 2017-2020

The publication Competition Culture in Europe 2017-2020 that was published today shows a large number of activities, research and education projects on the subject of architecture competition culture in Europe, carried out as part of a four year project initiated by Architectuur Lokaal.
Twenty European countries were involved in the implementation of the program; in six of them research projects were set up with students.We can only imagine what its impact will be in the upcoming years and decades”, says Prof. Dr. Evelien Bruggeman, General Secretary of the European Society of Construction Law in her foreword. As she read, she realized how much has been achieved in four years.

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The program focused at improving the quality of commissioning through the exchange of knowledge and experiences between European countries. Special attention was paid to the accessibility and transparency of design competitions in Europe. During four years, efforts were made to increase mutual understanding of the different national cultures. The book compiles the many competitions activities in Europe, including research and education projects in various European countries.
Prof. Bruggeman: “I’m especially delighted about the initiatives as part of this project focussed on increasing understanding of different cultures and legal systems and terms and languages, like the development of the EU Competition Culture Dictionary and the website The website especially is worth mentioning for all people working in this field. It was established in 2019 and is the first international portal for architectural assignments in all European countries.”

Breaking boundaries
The first part of the publication Competition Culture in Europe 2017-2020 provides an overview of the international meetings that have taken place over the past four years. The second part describes the results of the research from master students at the technical universities of Tirana (Albania), Sarajevo (Bosnia and Herzegovina), Sofia (Bulgaria), Athens (Greece), Dublin (Ireland) and Portsmouth (United Kingdom).
The research programs focused on the history and possibilities of competitions for the development of the building culture in their country. Prof. Bruggeman was especially taken by the large number of students who participated in this project: “Educating young people about architectural competitions and its dynamics throughout Europe, is essential for developing a better understanding on the differences between countries.”
Finally, attention is paid to the inventory of the developments in the culture of design contests in The Netherlands, based on 80 contests that Architectuur Lokaal was closely involved, in the Portfolio Competition Culture in The Netherlands 1993-2020.

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Competition Culture 2017-2020 is the publication of the results of a pan-European program initiated by Architectuur Lokaal and executed in cooperation with A10 new European architecture Cooperative and its correspondents, Project Compass CIC, the universities of Athens, Dublin, Portsmouth, Sarajevo, Sofia and Tirana and all others involved in the program. The program is carried out with the support of the Creative Industries Fund NL.
The publication continues Competition Culture 2013-2016, in which Architectuur Lokaal has mapped out the competition culture in seventeen European countries.