4307901: Economy and the Built Environment

zurück zur Übersicht
Semester:SS 17
Art:Vorlesung / Übung
Plansemester:1 - 4
Lektionen / Semester:24.0 L / 18.0 h
Selbststudium:72.0 h



Masterstudium Architektur (01.09.2014)


Today, major urban areas in developed regions are, without doubt, economic giants. Only 600 urban centers generate about 60 percent of global GDP. The urban world is shifting. Scholarly journals have published thousands of articles about urban economies. Among the questions we frequently find: Why do some cities grow faster than others? Why do some generate more wealth? Why do some decline? How do cities generate wealth, how do they apportion their wealth to further social and environmental goals?
Cities are first and foremost places—agglomerations of people—rather than economic and political units. Also, cities’ power to make economic policy is limited. While cities aren’t like nations, which can leap from rags to riches within a generation, they do have the policy apparatus to influence their economic destiny. A city’s initial size and location will largely determine which classes of economic activity are likely to succeed there and which are likely to fail.

The course will introduce you to the world of the economy of the built environment, urban and city economies, the role of private and public property, infrastructure and the build environment. The main focus is to understand the micro- and macro -economics and to endow your architectural and urban design skills with knowledge about the dynamics and responsibilities of building assets and their political, social and historical aspects. The financing, marketing and management of cities and our build environment is driven by the larger economy and related political issues: these are core drivers for most architectural design commissions and outcomes. Within this you will begin to understand the built environment as value structure, of real property interests and dynamics that determine design briefs and, together with public policy directions and planning objectives, set the stage for the design and planning profession to unfold and excel within. Familiarity with the conceptual frameworks, practical tools and language of the world of the 'built economy' and the appurtenant property market is an important asset, since, when inadequately understood and applied, development frameworks can constrain creativity and design quality - and lead to practices that can be regarded as socially, environmentally and economically unsuccessful.

The subject hence has a twin objective: to not only bestow an understanding of economy, but to do so in a manner that is applied in a political and social development framework. You will encounter the growing domain of economy in the build environment that seeks to influence our architectural excellence and the objective to interact with the drivers and champions of urban change and the involved social groups and solicit participation: taking into account that often the projects have multiple decision makers, accomplishers and reference social groups in addition to the community considered overall.


The outcome is to assist in developing both a sense of ethical understanding and practical vision in achieving knowledge about economical feasibility and resilient urban understanding that respond to the environmental, social and political demands of today. It is to help developing a working knowledge of processes in the property world, such as principles of corporate social responsibility and community investment; concepts of 'design dividends'; tools of gauging urban quality; incentives and other mechanisms for quality guidance and market innovation; and partnerships and other effective means of implementation. Ultimately, it is to motivate and prepare tomorrow’s architects and urban planners (so as relevant partners) for the complex world of real estate, by providing the basic knowledge of the industry and applying it into a real world experience.


Professional competence

  • Understand abstract concepts and their impact on your work
  • Explain competently, discuss and critique own work through oral presentations, writing or visual communication

Methodological competence
  • Identify key elements of problems and choose appropriate methods for their resolution in a considered manner

Social competence
  • Discuss and articulate ideas and information fluently

Personal competence
  • Assess own work and put it into a historical, theoretical and philosophical context
Personal competence
  • Assess own work and put it into a historical, theoretical, cultural and social context.



Lecture and seminar: case studies, discourse, writing


The Built Environment: Economics and management Strategies by Rocco Curto
Polytechnic of Turin, Italy Keywords: Economics, environmental assets, economic strategies, management strategies ©Encyclopedia of Life Support Systems (EOLSS)
Summary of Urban Economy Assessment: What is Urban Competitiveness? By Douglas Webster and Larissa Muller. (2000). Urban Competitiveness Assessment in Developing Country Urban Regions: The Road Forward, Paper Prepared for Urban Group, INFUD, The World Bank, Washington D.C., July 17.
Report | McKinsey Global Institute I March 2011: Five principles of Urban Economics By Mario Polèse Professor at the Centre Urbanisation Culture, Société at Montreal’s Institut National de la Recherche
Scientifique. He is the author of The Wealth and Poverty of Regions: Why Cities Matter.
Report | McKinsey Global Institute | March 2011 Urban world: Mapping the economic power of cities
by Richard Dobbs, Sven Smit, Jaana Remes, James Manyika, Charles Roxburgh, Alejandra Restrep
The Design Dividend. Property Council of Australia, Droege, P. 1999.
The Economics of Amenity. Center for Cultural Resources, MacNulty, R., Jacobson, D., R. Leo Penne; 1985


Portfolio, exercises, minimum 75% mandatory presence


27.03.201713:30 - 16:45H3
03.04.201713:30 - 16:45H3
08.05.201713:00 - 16:15H3
15.05.201713:00 - 16:15H3
22.05.201712:45 - 16:15H3
29.05.201713:00 - 16:15H3