Social Design Studio Summer School 2018

Social Design Studio



The Theme - Social Design is invisible

In recent years, the notion of Social Design has emerged in public discourse addressing the value of design in tackling complex social issues of our times, as a tool for urban innovation and social responsibility. Social Designers are taking the role of facilitators, change makers, urban activists, social catalysts, etc. In line with this, new interdisciplinary academic programmes are being introduced like the master’s programme “Social Design-Arts as Urban Innovation”, which was initiated by the University of Applied Arts Vienna in 2012.



But what exactly is Social Design?

The Social Design summer school 2018 departs from the location – a rural area in a highly touristified region in Carinthia/Austria – and brings together students from various disciplines to introduce and exchange on the power of Social Design.

Participants will discuss and develop ideas and concepts for minimal interventions on-site in interdisciplinary teams by combining and developing methods and approaches from Social Design, the arts, urban activism, etc. The summer school will act by means of Social Design acupunctures throughout the area of the Lake Ossiacher See but also in Hüttenberg and Klagenfurt.

An excursion to the Val di Tagliamento in the close-by Italian region of Friuli will take place to get an applied insight in alternative approaches of restructuration in a region that has been highly damaged by earthquakes and flooding.

The programme of the summer school will be complemented by a range of guest lectures and workshops with practitioners from various fields of expertise. The ideas and concepts developed throughout the week will be finally documented and presented as part of a Social Design session at the 2018 Biennale Architettura in Venice.

The programme’s red thread will be both the development of new approaches in Social Design and the reflection of existing methodology. There will be a chance for interested students to experience a thorough insight into the Vienna Social Design Studio’s projects. In addition, we will create a view on the larger context, compare Vienna and other international programmes in the field to sharpen our perspective.




Social Design methodology

The power of minimal interventions / Social Design acupunctures

Touristified everyday life in urban/rural areas

Günther Domenig’s architecture between Sculpture, Meta sign and Display

Rural depopulation of former mining areas in remote valleys

Megaprojects and Social housing – Balance of resources

Examples of professional Social Design projects




The Social Design Summer School is organized as a combination of workshops, lectures, urban explorations and plenary discussions. During the entire stay participants will be asked to work on ideas for team projects, which will be presented at the end of the week (at the Biennale Architettura in Venice). The Summer School will be held in English.




Lectures and Workshops

Film Screenings

Open School - Skills and Knowledge Exchange Session with students currently enrolled in the master programme Social Design

Social Events

Visits and Excursions:

- Excursion “Heft”, Architecture of Günther Domenig, Hüttenberg / Görtschitztal / Wietersdorf

- Excursion to Klagenfurt – Soccer Stadium and the Siebenhügelsiedlung / social housing complex

- Lendhauer - center of the regional capital Klagenfurt

- Excursion to the Val Tagliamento, hit by catastrophic earthquakes in 1976 and its actual diverse status of cultural and architectural restructuration

- Excursion to Venice and visit of the Biennale Architettura 2018

* A detailed programme for the summer school will be sent out in the course of June.




Social Design students

Social Design staff: Brigitte Felderer, Martin Färber, Monika Farukuoye, Ruth Mateus-Berr, Barbara Putz-Plecko, Christina Schraml, Herwig Turk

Iva Čukić, Ksenija Radovanović (Ministry of Space)

Andrew Herscher (requested)

Raffaela Lackner (Haus der Architektur Klagenfurt)

Elias Molitschnig, Alexander Hagner (FH Spital Kärnten)

Robert Schabus, Nora Leitgeb, Gerhard Maurer (Lendhauer)

Milica Tomić (requested)

Michael Wallraff (Architekt)

Friuli Experts – Pietro Valle (Architect and Critic / Udine), Herwig Turk, Asia Valencic



The International Summer School 2018 of the Social Design Studio Vienna will be held in cooperation with the Architektur Haus Kärnten. Our working space is located at the „Steinhaus“ – an iconic building by architect Günther Domenig.

The “Steinhaus“ at the lake Ossiacher See could be regarded as a manifesto. It all started in 1982 with the construction of a bathing jetty on a narrow site by the lake. The Austrian born architect Günther Domenig (1934-2012) reflected with his project the surrounding rugged landscape of the Alps, the vectors of space formed by woods, rocks, water. The polyhedra of his building project made out of concrete, steel and glass trigger a new understanding of space, of landscape, of geometry, of levels and balance. The construction embraces 5.000 cubic meters, raises on 80 pillars and arrives to 1.000 square meters of floor space. The architect used his „Steinhaus“ as studio, as study and learning space as well as a concert hall for jazz music. He appreciated „the importance of isolatedness, of seclusion as well as of independence“. Since 2012 the building enjoys a landmark status.

The „Architektur Haus Kärnten“ as governmental platform in cooperation with the Günther Domenig Steinhaus Privatstiftung opened the Steinhaus in 2014 as an international work space for interdisciplinary approaches in architecture and thinking.




The Summer School is intended for master students and young practitioners of various disciplines ranging from the arts, design, theory to architecture/urbanism or closely related fields who would like to explore Social Design and share skills and knowledge from previous projects. Applicants should have experience in artistic/urban projects. The course is open to about 15 international students.




Applicants are asked to submit a motivation letter including a short description of a project idea to build upon during the summer school (max. 1 page) and a short CV (max. 1 page).

Application Form

The application deadline is: 20 May 2018

Jury: end of May 2018

Applicants will receive notification of acceptance via email latest by end of May 2018.




July 20 - 29, 2018


Students will receive a certificate with 8 ECTS credits from the University of Applied Arts Vienna.




The Summer School fee is EUR 250 €, including a social welcome dinner. Students are expected to pay for their own travel and accommodation. Affordable accommodation is available at the close-by camping site. Spaces will be reserved by the university.




(c)Herwig Turk


(c)Herwig Turk


(c)Herwig Turk


(c)Herwig Turk


(c)Herwig Turk


(c)Herwig Turk


(c)Herwig Turk


(c)Herwig Turk


(c)Herwig Turk


(c)Herwig Turk


20. – 29. July 2018
Base: “Steinhaus”
Points of action: Steindorf
Lake Ossiacher See Val di Tagliamento and Venice (Italy)
Social Design Studio