This international conference accompanies the exhibition May 68, Architecture Also which will be held at the Cité de l’architecture et du patrimoine, from May 14 to October 17, 2018 (Caroline Maniaque, Eléonore Marantz, Jean-Louis Violeau, curators). The aim is to investigate from an international perspective how architecture was taught in the 1960s and 1970s. This is a period that in France and in many other countries in the West, was marked by radical institutional upheaval and social, political and pedagogic changes.

This conference follows on from two workshops. The first was held on 16th and 17th June 2016 at the Ecole nationale supérieure d’architecture Paris-Belleville and the Institut national d’histoire de l’art. It focused on the building of schools of architecture. The second was held on 20th and 21st October 2016, on news systems of education introduced in schools of architecture in France and elsewhere (Cité de l’architecture et du patrimoine and Ecole nationale supérieure d’architecture, Normandie). 


The upheaval in teaching of architecture in France in May 68 had a wider context, both in time – from the war to the 1970s – and geographically, with international connections. 

The 1965 conference of the International Union of Architects that was held in Paris in 1965 was dedicated to architectural education. The same theme was picked up in a report published by Unesco. In 1978 an international conference on teaching and architecture in European schools was organized by the Société des architectes diplômés par le gouvernement (SADG). The conference of May 2018 will investigate different forms of international architectural education, and in particular those of the sixties and seventies. Changes to architectural theory were determined by many factors including alternative forms of construction and ecological and environmental issues. Architectural teaching was opened up to the Humanities as well as to mathematical and computerized experimentations. How did these initiatives fare in the face of the critical debate to which they were subjected but also the successive reforms that followed. 

Was the citation “68 Moment” particularly fertile for the renewal of teaching? What kind of architects did the architectural schools wish to produce? Did the wave of changes in pedagogy in that period – that can be seen in the United States and in Italy – introduce new ways of thinking about the role of the architects? What was the aim of the many experiments in architectural teaching that were undertaken? What was the influence in France of innovations in England, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Switzerland and in Italy? How were they adopted or adapted?
This international conference aims to provide a better understanding of the pedagogical theories underlying architectural education from the end of the fifties to the beginning of the eighties in Europe, the Americas and elsewhere. To what extent did these create a generation of architects prepared to master the diversity of architectural skills or, alternatively, to take up theoretical, cultural and political positions? 

A number of publications already deal with architectural education in Europe and in the United States. Several universities have published retrospective studies such as that of Joan Ockman and Rebecca Williamson,   Architecture School : Three Centuries of Educating Architects in North America, (Cambridge, MA, MIT Press, 2012  . Richard Hayes studied the Design-build program established by Charles Moore at Yale in 1967, in his The Yale Building Project. The First 40 Years (New Haven, Yale University Press, 2007). In Portugal, Pedro Bandeira analyzed alternative education in his Porto School B in his Porto School: B side / An oral history (1968-1978) (Guimaraes, A OFICINA, CIPRL, 2014). Beatriz Colomina and her doctoral students at Princeton presented their research program Radical Pedagogies at the Venice Biennale in 2014. 

Suggested topics include:

1. Biographical details and travels of key figures in architectural education.
2. Political or economic factors determining pedagogic changes.
3. The balance between studio teaching, the Fine Arts, the Sciences, the Humanities and Social Sciences. Links between architectural schools, universities and polytechnics. 
4. The experience of students and teachers absorbing urbanism, architecture, industrial design and communication. 
5. The role of particular groups within schools of architecture. The impact of teachers from schools overseas and their role in the renewal of the curriculum.
6. New techniques of teaching such as tape recorders, super8 films, video. New forms of student presentation including publication, workshops and full-scale construction.

Conference proposals:

Please include:
1. An abstract of 250 words specifying your title, the sources you will draw on and the main points of your arguments 
2. Some keywords reflecting the subject you deal with
3. A short personal resumé of 100 words, including your name, telephone contct number, email and institutional affiliation


  • Call for papers opens November 27, 2017
  • Deadline: January 12, 2018
  • Selection: before February 13, 2018
  • Submission of texts: before April 14, 2018
  • Conference: May 15 and 16, 2018

Please send your proposal to:

  • annedebarre at
  • caroline.maniaque at