Building the City Now!: Towards a Pedagogy for Transdisciplinary Urban Design


  • Enric Massip-Bosch Departament de Projectes Arquitectònics, Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya-BarcelonaTECH
  • Olga Sezneva Sociology Department, Universiteit van Amsterdam.



This paper presents and discusses the unique experience of a training program in urban design, directed by the authors, which facilitated an exchange, integration and new advancement of the pedagogy and knowledge of diverse fields concerned with the city: Building The City Now! A joint effort between Catalan architects and Russian academia and businesses with support from European experts, BCNow!’s first edition became a training ground for fifteen Russian professionals and activists from diverse backgrounds in Saint Petersburg in 2014-2015 seeking to explore an alternative understanding of the city and its production in their practices. Based on the idea of transdisciplinarity, the program was developed with a hands-on approach. This paper reflects on the experience and lessons from BCNow! contextualizing it in the existing traditions of urban thinking, discusses the idea of transdisciplinarity by relating it to comparable experiences, and zooms onto the specifics of the curriculum providing concrete illustrations of the training and its outcomes.

Biografía del autor/a

Enric Massip-Bosch, Departament de Projectes Arquitectònics, Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya-BarcelonaTECH

Doctor Architect, Associate Professor at the Architecture Design Department, UPC-BarcelonaTECH. Leading the interdepartmental curricular module 'Architecture and the City' (TAP6) at Escola del Vallès-BarcelonaTECH.

Principal at EMBA architecture & urban design practice, based in Barcelona and working internationally (

Co-director with Olga Sezneva of the 'Building The City Now!' Master Program, accredited by UPC-BarcelonaTECH.

Olga Sezneva, Sociology Department, Universiteit van Amsterdam.

Doctor Sociologist, Assistant Professor (UH1) at the Department of Sociology, Universiteit van Amsterdam. Received her Ph.D. from New York University and was a Harper Fellow at the University of Chicago.

Served as a Professor of Urban Studies at European University at St. Petersburg, Russia. Main research interests are the urban built environment, human mobility, and digital technologies.

Co-director with Enric Massip-Bosch of the 'Building The City Now!' Master Program, accredited by UPC-BarcelonaTECH.


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