Call for Projects: Rotterdam Architecture Month 2022

The organization of the Rotterdam Architecture Month (RA Month) cordially invites designers, design schools and other parties who feel involved in the development of the spatial domain to submit projects for the RA Month 2022 main exhibition. The exhibition can be seen throughout the month of June at Het Nieuwe Instituut. Projects can be submitted until sunday 27 March at the latest.

RA Month’s main exhibition ties in with the theme of the national Day of Architecture: (T)Huis (House/Home). The exhibition addresses urgent issues relating to housing and the residential environment. The pressures on affordability, a level playing field and building a sustainable residential environment are significant and the solutions are not easy to find. What role does design play in finding a way out of the situation? What opportunities do designers, commissioning clients, individuals and policymakers see for affordable and accessible, sustainable, innovative, quality residential environments?

With this Call for Projects, the national and international design sector is invited to put forward projects that respond in an innovative way to at least one of the five different challenges of the (T)Huis theme. Do you have an existing project or a just-completed scale model that ties in with the theme? Submit it no later than 27 March via the RA Month website. You can read more about the selection criteria, conditions and guidelines in this Call for Projects document.

The RA Month organization is looking forward to receiving all the submissions.

Apply now

You can respond to any of the calls below:

1. Typological innovation

In Rotterdam, but also at a national level, we are facing major challenges and transitions. The housing challenge is one of them. The priority and magnitude of this task demands, as a matter of urgency, fundamental rethinking of current housing practices. This simultaneously provides opportunities to create more diverse, high-quality, sustainable housing and residential environments. This Call is looking for typological innovations, experiments or imaginings that offer an alternative to the prevailing and largely standardized housing practice. For instance: cooperative housing or CPO projects, transformations of existing buildings (including residential buildings) and forms of temporary or affordable housing, adaptable architecture designed to last a lifetime, intergenerational ‘kangaroo’ homes or ‘tiny houses’. But also, an interesting mix of housing types within a single project or innovative construction and living concepts.

Submit now

2. Energy transition and the living environment

Our immediate living environment is going to change. The transition from fossil to ‘clean’, greenly generated energy raises questions for the built environment, making it not only a technical challenge, but in particular an important spatial and cultural task that has an impact at every level. How is the energy transition changing the appearance of our built environment – our city, street or home? What is the role of the designer here? And how can the energy transition be utilized to improve the residential environment? This Call is looking for projects and design research that are positioned at the intersection of architecture, energy transition and the living environment. Some examples are innovations in making the home more sustainable, at the scale of both the house and the street, or the role of design power in integrating various transition tasks into the immediate living environment. But also, addressing climate poverty and other potential negative consequences of climate policies and transition challenges, including finding solutions for the impact.

Submit now

3. Who owns the city?

When do you feel at home in a city? With the immense house-building ambitions, climate change, the densification challenge and various transitions we will have to face in the future, the city is changing rapidly. The question of who owns the city and who it is for has been brought into focus in part by Covid-19 and is more relevant than ever. There is a difference in perspective between existing residents, new residents, housing corporations, developers, architects, the municipality and politicians. How do you prevent the people with the least resilience from falling victim to abstract ambitions? How do we ensure that we make a city for everyone, not from an ideal perspective but from absolute necessity? This Call is looking for projects that relate to the ownership of the city. And how to deal differently with creating a level playing field for a housing career, quality temporary housing, homelessness, illegality, properties being divided up to rent as rooms, dilapidation and people’s ever-eroding housing rights? For instance, by means of new perspectives and practices for resident participation, methods for keeping the city accessible, fairness and representation in the professional field, and the role of the community and other ‘soft’ values in valuing and keeping the city accessible.

Submit now

4. Sustainable densification

The recent housing protests show that the increasing demand for housing is slowly reaching boiling point. That more house-building needs to take place in the coming decades is now also endorsed by most researchers and policymakers. But how can we accommodate more housing within the existing urban fabric while ensuring there is room for inclusivity, sustainability and flexibility? And what role do designers play in shaping this growth? This Call is looking for projects that offer new solutions to the increasing demand for housing. For instance: alternative forms of housing construction such as relocatable modular homes that meet local housing needs better, initiatives that add quality square metres on a smaller scale, or building systems that allow for individual adaptability. But also, building on non-traditional building sites, potentially in inner cities, or new ways of densifying in the outlying areas. Because how do you prevent the outlying areas being used as the easy solution for the building challenge, instead of sustainable densification?

Submit now

5. Sustainability and a new way of building

Building production is set to increase dramatically in the coming years, while bio-based, nature-inclusive, climate-adaptive and circular construction is only slowly becoming the norm. This Call is looking for examples of how the use of sustainable and circular materials can go hand in hand with faster and smarter construction. What natural materials are currently being used to build and can be used in the future? What are the opportunities and challenges of materials such as wood, hemp, straw and seaweed? How do we organize the production chain for these natural materials? What new building processes (including digital processes) does this materialization involve? And what role does the designer play in this new building culture? Model projects could be about innovative timber-construction projects, experimental use of natural materials, the deployment of data, innovations in certification and regulations, or mapping out a sustainable building chain.

Submit now

Join in!

Sign up and provide
  • A fully completed registration form. Pitching your exhibition proposal is part of this;
  • A maximum of six A4 pages as PDF (max. 5MB) with tantalizing imaginings such as models or 3D objects, drawings, photographs or moving images that support your exhibition proposal. Provide a clear flow/build-up of the story or message, with a brief explanation of what is shown in the images. Please note: only use images that are free of copyright. On photos of models or other 3D objects, indicate the dimensions and material as well;
  • When submitting, clearly indicate the Call for which you are submitting. A combination of more than one Call is possible;
  • If you have any questions, you can send them until 25 March 2022 to Tess de Ruiter,
  • Projects can be submitted until 27 March at the latest.

Submit now

Selection criteria

A selection committee will select about 30 projects from all the submitted proposals that are eligible to be considered for participation in the (T)Huis exhibition in the Festival Heart of RA Month. The selection committee will assess the submissions on at least the following criteria:

  • The project makes a valuable contribution to the theme of RA Month’s main exhibition;
  • The programme inspires and interests the visitor to RA Month in architecture and spatial development.
  • The project is presented in an accessible and understandable way to a wide (and not only professional) audience;
  • The project fits within the total concept of the exhibition. The scenography of the exhibition is created based on available space, the defined themes and the submitted projects from the Call for Projects.

Submit now

Conditions for submission
  • Designers, design students, spatial design education, architects, landscape architects, urban designers, commissioning clients, policymakers and other parties (national and international) involved in developing and realizing plans in the spatial domain are all welcome to submit their project(s);
  • Both realized projects and already-existing plans, visions or imaginings can be submitted;
  • The submission for the exhibition may not have any commercial purpose;
  • Proposals can only be submitted by fully completing the registration form, which you can find on the RA Month website;
  • A complete submission includes, in addition to the fully completed application form, a PDF with images supporting the exhibition proposal on a maximum of six A4 pages (max. 5MB). Provide the visual material with appropriate factual information such as captions, credits, and (in the case of models or 3D objects) dimensions;
  • It is possible to submit more than one project. In this case, a separate and complete submission must be made for each project via the RA Month website;
  • Submitters supply all information, images, drawings, models and other materials free of copyright, so that the materials may be used for various online and offline communication purposes, if required.

Submit now

Conditions for selected projects
  • The main RA Month exhibition opens on 1 June 2022 and can be visited free of charge in Gallery 1 of Het Nieuwe Instituut until 30 June;
  • The exhibition texts are in Dutch and English. The RA Month organization is responsible for writing, editing and translating the exhibition texts (or having them edited and translated);
  • On the advice of the selection committee, a selected participant may be asked to supplement the submission with additional or different visual material, or to make a selection from the submitted visual material. To fit in with the exhibition concept, a selected participant may also be asked to deliver the project in a different way than initially proposed;
  • The graphic design for the exhibition is provided by Studio de Ronners. In the case of a two-dimensional exhibition proposal, the selected participant will be asked to convert the submission to the format being specifically developed for this exhibition;
  • In the case of a three-dimensional exhibition proposal, such as a model or other physical materials, the selected participant will be responsible for the production and transportation of the selected object to the exhibition location. After the exhibition has finished, the selected participant is responsible for collecting the exhibited material, unless otherwise agreed. Please note that after the exhibition is finished, the material cannot be stored. Arranging insurance for the transport is also the responsibility of the selected participant;
  • The submitter is responsible for the development of the content and the creation of images, models, films or other items selected for the exhibition, and will bear the associated costs.
  • The RA Month organization is responsible for printing and will bear the costs of printing the selected visual material and exhibition texts, and the set-up/installation of all projects within the framework of the exhibition, unless otherwise agreed;
  • The RA Month organization is responsible for arranging the exhibition and will bear the costs of the exhibition platform, lighting and any audio-visual equipment;
  • In the case of complex presentations, the selected participant(s) may be asked to assist in the installation of the exhibit. This also applies to dismantling afterwards;
  • The selected participant remains the owner of the exhibited object at all times. During the exhibition period, all selected materials are insured by the RA Month organization against destruction and theft;
  • Selected participants provide copyright-free material for use in both the exhibition and various online and offline publications.

Submit now

Timeline March – July 2022
01 March Launch date Call for Projects
27 March Closing date Call for Projects
6 April Selection announced
16 May Start exhibition construction
1 June Opening RA Month
1 – 30 June Rotterdam Architecture Month
1 – 5 July Dismantling exhibition (and collecting models)

Submit now