Master’s Students Program: The Environment

Power Corporation of Canada Award
Research, June 2016 to August 2016

In the late 1960s and 1970s, a rising awareness of environmental issues in society caused architects and planners to rethink their professions and practices, not only in regard to sources of renewable energy, but also through experimentation with forms of cohabitation. Alternative projects began to be covered in the architectural press before these kinds of green strategies became institutionalized and economized during the 1980s. Revisiting this recent history of eco- and solar architecture today provides a more informed and critical perspective on current concerns.

Through the comparative reading of North American and international journals, participants in the 2016 CCA Master’s Students Program learn how environmental issues are communicated and get a better understanding of the rise of an eco-consciousness in the fields of architecture and planning. Studying the theme on the basis of publications and documents from the CCA Collection, with the help of other resources, they will develop a unique contextual perspective and acquire fundamental skills in archival research.

The topics to be considered will range beyond mere aesthetic and technical considerations to include the autonomous house; decentralized and integrated systems; active and passive climatization; renewable energies; strategies of minimal intervention; the greening of roofs, facades and yards; the reuse of old buildings; co-operative and mixed-use projects and blocks; and natural and recycled materials for construction and insulation, among other possibilities.


Lisa Chow
McGill University, Canada

Michèle Curtis
Carleton University, Canada

Genevieve Depelteau
University of British Columbia, Canada


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