Kinship in the City student competition

Between 2018 and 2020 we held three design competitions in which we challenged architecture students from the UK and Australia to come up with their own ideas for tackling loneliness in the city of the future.

We challenged these aspiring designers to design components of place that encourage togetherness in the local community. Each competition saw the entrants gather at the Make studio for a day of workshopping; they then had several weeks to refine their designs before returning to present to a panel of judges.

Student Competition One Entries

This competition challenged UK students to consider the Foundation’s research into the growing issue of urban loneliness, particularly its causes and the way that vital design can improve the issue. Each team was assigned a theme with both positive and negative connotations and asked to use it as the basis for a proposal that combats isolation and promotes social cohesion in a large city like London.

The judging panel included representatives from the Future Spaces Foundation, Make Architects, Atelier Ten and BuroHappold.

Student Competition Two Entries

The brief for this competition was to envision social spaces that facilitate shared experiences and lasting bonds among people in cities, using research points from the Foundation’s findings on urban loneliness and the various demographics it affects. The themes we asked entrants to consider revolve around social media, human relationships and modes of interaction.

Our judges came from Make, the Foundation, Urbik, BuroHappold and London Legacy Development Corporation.

Student Competition Three Entries

This design challenge saw Australian entrants explore ideas for community-centric loneliness interventions in the age of social media and remote working. We highlighted the importance of considering all areas of the built environment when designing out loneliness in cities, including high streets and transport exchanges as well as the buildings that define these. We encouraged each team to tailor their response towards a tech-focused theme and to draw on their experience of Sydney’s urban landscape as well as social and digital trends.

Representatives from Make, the Future Spaces Foundation, Lendlease as well as New South Wales Government Architect and a local architectural journalist made up the judging panel.