How do Cities Differ?
Jacques Herzog and Pierre de Meuron

Urban growth is not only characteristic of contemporary urbanization processes, as cities have always been vessels of social, economic, intellectual, technical, and cultural innovation. The relation between the rapid extension of the urban territories and the simultaneous multiplication of local transformation processes, often abrupt and at large geographic scale, has undermined the effectiveness of available means to describe, comprehend, control, and govern the quality of sustainability of the new urban condition and its architecture.

The core of the research activities is the detection of traces of urban change in the built space of the inhabited landscape through a series of fieldworks. The research engages the issues of the contemporary urban condition by describing rigorously the modalities of physical transformation in different environments and contexts, in order to achieve a deeper understanding of the issues related to the improvement of the quality of human settlements in the contemporary world and develop novel urbanistic strategies.