In 2020, no one would expect that the COVID-19 outbreak has become the most serious global crisis in human society since World War II. Besides its comprehensive strike to the public health systems, this epidemic acts also as a magnifying glass and testing ground for the urbanization process, disclosing multitudinous problems and emergencies under the glamour of rapid urban development. The incremental era of excessive sprawling in metropolises is gradually coming to an end, leaving behind various urban diseases such as the imbalance of resource allocation, and the concerns for human welfare ignored.
In the stock era that emphasizes the refined urban management,apart from the patching of urban residual spaces and intensive farming of micro-spaces, the era faces new challenges: the disconnections between primitive physical spaces caused by virtual spaces online and the unprecedented patterns of social and consumption changed by the Internet, game industry and e-commerce.
If we regard the urban space one needs for everyday activities as a "living circle", should the urban spaces present and in the future be shaped based on the scale of these living circles? What is the focus for a living circle to gather and define? Which is a better way to allocate resources of public, commercial, residential and other facilities within a living circle with greater rationality, efficiency and intelligence?
2020 AUBE Traveling Fellowship will focus on the urban living units. With "1km² Everyday Life, Compact Cities" as its research theme, this year’s fellowship encourages people to rethink future directions of urban evolution after the extensive development of high-density cities, and respond to the proposition of our own era. From now until 9 August, all students (undergraduate students in Year 3 and above, graduate students and PhD students) from architecture-related disciplines (architecture, urban design, landscape, historic building conservation, etc.) of any registered higher education institutions at home or overseas, who are able to complete the research tour of relevant topics within the designated schedule, are welcome to apply for the 2020 AUBE Traveling Fellowship to its host, AUBE Conception, in accordance with specific application requirements.
The applicants may expand on the theme of "1km² Everyday Life, Compact Cities", taking urban issues they have acknowledged, observed and experienced as the introduction and starting point, which might touches topics such as the aging problem of concentrated residential neighborhoods in high-density cities and the upgrade of community software and hardware, the integration of old and new functions in urban revitalization of core areas, the vitality of new commercial spaces and streets, the appropriate ways to coordinate spatial efficiency of transportation hubs and surrounding areas with humanistic care, convenience and sense of belonging in the life of existing residential areas, deindustrialization and reactivation of old industrial land and so on. "1km²", as a livable living radius generally accepted in contemporary urban planning theories, also offers a relatively controllable unit of scale in "urban field research". Applicants may frame one (or several) urban unit(s) of around 1km² as their subject to carry out research and field trips accordingly.
During the application period of the fellowship, AUBE Conception will organize online academic salons held by young scholars to interpret the topic from all perspectives. For shortlisted applicants, AUBE Conceptions will invite them to Shenzhen to participate in a 3-day review workshop, so as to optimize their proposal reports with the help of academic advisors, and perform the presentation and defense for their projects.
In the end, AUBE Conception will select 5 winning research projects according to the finalists’ presentation and defense results. Each winning team will be awarded a total amount of 50,000 RMB traveling fund. The fellowship recipients will then complete an urban field trip of 2-4 weeks related to their research subject, develop a research report and share their findings in Shenzhen.
Notes: Updated dates above will be notified if there is any change.
"1km² Everyday Life, Compact Cities" Topics Explained
Urban Pixel: One Method, One Gateway
Le Corbusier sees that a scale stands for a new age, and it is the scale of the spirit. Human scale can be used as a method for urban studies, and the concept of "1 km²"serves only as a sign and symbol of the scale. The "scale" can be measured in time, such as a living circle within a 15-minute’s walk; it can be measured in space, such as a community unit with a radius of 800 meters; the scale can be measured in physical distance, in psychological distance, and in many other dimensions beyond time and space.
Urban Resolution: One Viewpoint, Multiple Narratives
A city is not a static image; it lives a life day by day. From the viewpoint of express ring roads and metro, the resolution of a city lowers to its abstract road network and route maps; and more often, this resolution is even as precise as the taste of a breakfast shop, or the memory brought up by a brick. While high-density merely implies a datum, the compact city of high-resolution can always withstand a further enlargement.
A Leaf and the Urban Forest: One Reality, Multiple Connections
Not a single leaf exists in isolation while a single pixel only makes sense when it perches within a larger background. During the post-incremental era, a more ecologically abundant "urban forest" will evolve from the refined and intensified development deeply into the localities, and the connection among the local, the peripheral and the overall is also closely watched, from the individual to the universal.
Urban “Field” Research: One Attitude, One Practice
Escape from the books and theories, and examine the cities in real life. Measure, record, experience, dialogue with and care about the physical spaces, and cherish the lively crowds and intangible rules.You are sometimes an objective observer, sometimes an empathetic part of them. The term field research comes from the basic research methodology of cultural anthropology and archaeology, that is, the practice and application of "direct observation", which is also the prerequisite of obtaining the first-hand original data before the research being carried out. All research work involved and conducted in the field can be referred as field research.
Project Investigation and Research Process
1. Put forward an authentic urban question: taking an urban issue of high-density cities that you have acknowledged, observed or experienced as the starting point. The question shall be authentic, contemporary, exemplary for urban issues in China and commonly seen across the world.
2. Select a research subject: select one (or several) high-density city across the world, and choose one (or several) urban unit of around 1 km² as the research subject. The research destinations must be suitable for conducting field research.
3. Plan the travel itinerary: on the basis of the first two sections set above, the applicants should collect sufficient preliminary data and formulate a field trip plan of 2-4 weeks accordingly. One question may correspond to one city or multiple cities, including but not limited to initial research, destination study, survey questionnaire design, detailed schedule and budget of the research tour, etc. The review workshop will thoroughly discuss and examine the research proposals submitted by shortlisted applicants for further optimization and adjustment. The shortlist review workshop will be held in Shenzhen, and therefore, if a specific urban issue of Shenzhen is proposed as one of the benchmark questions, there will be opportunities to conduct more in-depth investigations and discussions.
4. Conduct the research and field trip: according to the itinerary, the fellowship recipients are required to arrange a field trip of 2-4 weeks by themselves before 31 March, 2021. During the research tour, records should be kept via various multimedia methods (drafts, sketches, memory maps, photos, videos) to document the research process; questionnaires, street interviews and in-depth interviews with relevant personnel can be deployed for data collection when necessary; the emphasis should focus on the on-site records of subjective experience and objective conditions; for methodology, the recipients may refer to field research methods in anthropology and modernological methods in architecture.
5. Develop the research report: the fellowship recipients are required to complete a research report within 2 months after the research tour. The report should be no less than 10,000 words and should be presented with text, illustrations and video clips, including but not limited to:
1). Explanation of the basis and process of identifying the question, including but not limited to actual cases, data, and theoretical literature reviews;
2). Explanation of the basis and process of selecting the chosen urban units;
3). Case studies and investigation result;
4). Reflections upon urban scale and urban unit;
5). An edited video clip of no less than 3 minutes recording the research process.
2020 AUBE Traveling Fellowship Application Requirements
1. Eligibility Criteria
1) The applicants must have enrolled in architecture-related courses (architecture, urban design, landscape, historic building conservation, etc.) of registered higher education institutions at home or overseas as a Year 3 (and above) undergraduate, graduate or PhD student;
2) The applicants must independently accomplish the research and investigation plan with a clear academic topic, aspire to complete their studies, obtain the corresponding degrees and enter relevant professions for future career;
3) The applicants must complete the travel itinerary of a certain research topic designated by AUBE Traveling Fellowship before 31 March, 2021 (for projects involving overseas travels, itineraries shall be made dependent upon the actual situation of COVID-19 epidemic).
2. Information Required
1) Applicant CV (which shall cover the applicant’s basic personal information, contact details, educational background and professional experience including name, age and gender; one A4 page maximum) and a statement of student status letter;
2) Application Proposal Report (illustrated text required, minimum 3000 words), including but not limited to the first three sections of the abovementioned ‘Project Investigation and Research Process’, that is, putting forward an urban question, selecting a research subject and planning the travel itinerary.
3) Applicant Portfolio and Award Certificates. The applicants shall submit an independently compiled personal portfolio and other supporting materials including tranｓｃｒｉｐｔs and professional awards that may prove their talent and proficiency. All information under this section should be organized separately into one single PDF file (20MB maximum).
3. Application Notes
1) Priority is given to trans-disciplinary teams (2-3 members per team), and independent applicants will also be accepted. All teams must make a commitment that the research tour sponsored by 2020 AUBE Traveling Fellowship will be completed by 31 March, 2021(for projects involving overseas travels, itineraries shall be made dependent upon the actual situation of COVID-19 epidemic).
2) The applicant must confirm that all the works submitted for AUBE Traveling Fellowship application is original, and the applicant holds the copyright. In the meanwhile, the copyright owner grants the host the right to use the works by default, including but not limited to use, reproduction and dissemination of the works on mobile platforms, video websites and relevant media reports involved in this event for the purpose of propagation. If any personal information is falsified, the applicant will be immediately disqualified for AUBE Traveling Fellowship permanently; all materials submitted will not be returned.
3) If the shortlisted applicant/fellowship recipient is not able to engage in the Shenzhen workshop review, submit research report, attend the achievement sharing conference or complete the research tour within the specified timeframe in accordance with the schedule and methods designated by AUBE Conception due to personal reasons, it will be regarded as giving up the opportunity of the fellowship, and AUBE Conception will cancel the applicant’s qualification for 2020 AUBE Traveling Fellowship.
4) All fellowship recipients must confirm that their personal documents including passport are valid, and they meet the requirements for tourist visa application of their destinations if any overseas travel is involved. If the research tour cannot be completed due to personal reasons such as visa issues, AUBE Conception will cancel the applicant’s qualification for 2020 AUBE Traveling Fellowship.
5) Once AUBE Conception approves the final travel itineraries of the fellowship recipients, the recipients will receive 70% of the traveling fellowship amount before departure; the recipients will receive the remaining 30% of the traveling fellowship amount upon submission of research report to AUBE Conception. 2020 AUBE Traveling Fellowship must be signed for by every member of the winning team. Any internal conflicts shall be settled within the team.
6) All activities during the research tour shall comply with national laws and regulations. Visas, accommodation, food and transportation should be arranged by the individuals (appropriate support is available from the host if the recipients feel a need to contact or visit any internationally renowned architectural firms or architects), who shall bear all consequences caused therefrom. It is recommended that the recipients purchase travel insurance for themselves based on actual conditions.
7) If any changes occur to relevant events and time schedule of 2020 AUBE Traveling Fellowship due to force majeure, AUBE Conception has the right to determine all new itineraries.
8) The shortlist and the final result will be published on the WeChat official account and official website of AUBE Conception. Please pay attention to relevant information.
9) AUBE Conception reserves the right to final interpretation of the event.
4. How to Apply & Important Dates
1) Please submit all application documents in digital format to: firstname.lastname@example.org;
Application enquiry: Miss Wang, 0755-26930800-8686; or add official customer service account on WeChat: 13528795850 (office hours: weekday 9:00-18:00);
2) Application email subject format: university + department + current year of study + name + 2020 AUBE Traveling Fellowship Application;
3) Application period: 3 July – 9 August 2020
4) Shortlist announcement: mid-August 2020
5) Shenzhen workshop review, presentation, defense and winner announcement: end of August 2020
6) Recipients’ study travel period: before 31 March 2021 (for projects involving overseas travels, itineraries shall be made dependent upon the actual situation of COVID-19 epidemic)
7) Recipients’ report submission and Shenzhen achievement sharing conference: May-June 2021
Notes: Updated dates above will be notified if there is any change.
AUBE Traveling Fellowship is an independent charity research foundation for future design talents launched by AUBE Conception in 2019. Rooted in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau Greater Bay Area, it confronts the frontline of urbanization in China, advocates the public to criticize and inherit material and spiritual legacies of China and the world with scientific spirits, humanistic care and the courage to change, and also to observe and reflect our present and future.
Founded in 1997 in Paris of France and entered China in Shenzhen in 1998, AUBE Conception has established its global design brand integrating architecture, landscape and urban design with a corporate culture of diversity, inclusiveness and openness, and actively responds to social responsibilities as always. Over the past 20 years, AUBE Conception has accomplished more than 1,600 projects, including OCT Ecological Square, Shenzhen Talent Park, Anhui International Convention and Exhibition Center, Guiyang International Eco-Conference Center, Guiyang 201 Tower, Shenzhen Peninsula City, Shenzhen CFC Changfu Center, Shenzhen Q_Plex and Shenzhen World Convention and Exhibition Center.
In 2015, to celebrate the 10th anniversary of Croisements Festival, AUBE Conception successfully planned the first exhibition of Le Corbusier’s works in China. Spanned from May to July, from Hong Kong To Shenzhen, from France to China, the exhibition titled "'Le Corbusier Modern Architect Giant" brought over 200 pieces of Le Corbusier’s works to China for the first time.
In 2019, upon the 55th anniversary of the establishment of China-France diplomatic relations and Shenzhen Design Week, AUBE Conception launched the first AUBE Traveling Fellowship for students in architecture, planning, landscape and other design fields across the world, to pay tribute to the master architect and to celebrate the classics by revisiting the architectural journey of Le Corbusier. Led by the AUBE academic leader, the 8 fellowship winners visited 19 masterpieces designed by Le Corbusier across France in 9 days, tracing the way of how this Modernist giant answered the proposition of his era.
Since 2019, AUBE Traveling Fellowship will nominate a number of exceptional students from architecture-related disciplines of higher education institutions and help them accomplish their field trips and research tours, in order to encourage architecture student to discover urban issues, explore spatial fields in depth and contemplate about the future cities.
2019“欧博奖学金 | 重走柯布西耶之路”建筑考察现场