This doctoral course (2 ECTS credits) is part of the courses of the Doctoral program Architecture & Science of the City (EDAR) which can be integrated to the 7 compulsory credits of the first year. It is also open to PhD students from other doctoral schools who can chose it as free credits combined with part of the course orientated social sciences and architecture.

The objective of this course is to raise the awareness of PhD students to the issues of sustainability in architecture and to interdisciplinary methods (multi-criteria approaches). This module provides them with an opportunity to exercise critical thinking, which plays an essential role in the development of their PhD dissertation. It also allows PhD students to value the progress undertaken for their own doctoral thesis within the framework of integrated design and sustainable architecture (IDEAS), whether in terms of the addressed topics, the chosen approach for building/neighbourhood analysis, literature search, etc. The main objective of this module is to provide students with methods to assess sustainability and encourage the ability to arrive to justifiable position regarding sustainability in the built environment. Lectures in this module help students sharpen their skills in objective argument construction and discussion.

During the course students will analyse and evaluate the sustainability of an emblematic building/neighbourhood in a rigorous and scientific approach. The analysis will be based on relevant sustainability evaluation criteria. During the exercise student should construct a critical and objective evaluation regarding the integration of sustainability within their case study. Students are free to select a case study, which could be related to their PhD work.

In a sustainability perspective, the analysis should consider analysis criteria relevant to two distinct sustainable development axes (environment, society, economy). This could be achieved by addressing issues like the use of non-renewable energy in architecture, or the bioclimatic design optimisation, or comfort in relation to occupants. The analysis could be broader addressing the optimisation and harmonisation of environmental, socio-cultural and economic criteria. The list of criteria will first be based on the SIA 112/1 recommendation framework. The final module outcome is an analysis sheet that shall be elaborated on the basis of the analysis of a sustainability integration process pertaining to a building, a neighbourhood case study.

In parallel, the course will be enriched by invited speaker lecturers whose contributions will illustrate interdisciplinary research in the field of sustainable architecture.