Synergetic Landscapes Unit: The Multispecies Biodigital Community Codesign


Welsh School of Architecture | Cardiff University, UK

Yutao Feng, Huicong Meng, Danjian Wang, Meihui Wang, Yuchen Wang, Yuan Zhao | Marie Davidová, Supervisor


The paper will unfold a work in progress of Synergetic Landscapes unit of Master of Architectural Design at the Welsh School of Architecture. This collaborative design unit focuses on generating potentials for coperforming landscape of human and non-human, living and non-living, natural and artificial participants of Grangetown community, Cardiff, Wales, UK. The term community in this project is extended from what used to be understood in anthropocentric culture. In the 21st century, i.e. rivers (such as Whanganui River) and others are reclaiming their legal personhood with social, cultural, economic and environmental interests (Argyrou & Hummels, 2019).

This work in progress aims to integrate a variety of living and non-living agents within the community in codesigning flourishing environment with and for All. The preoccupation with defining the legal person in anthropocentric terms highlights what is of value to an [Anthropocene] society. The fact that the environment in most legal systems does not have legal personhood status, but that corporations do, is indicative of the fact that contemporary western societies see the natural world as being for-profit (Hutchison, 2014). The project aims for transition towards the era of Post Anthropocene where living and non-living beings and systems coexist together in  synergy.

The unit’s collaborative design is developed through ‘gigamapping’ (Sevaldson, 2018b) exploration and development around six key topics synthesised in six individual ‘ecosystemic prototypical interventions’ (Davidová, 2020) designs. The topics cover: a) synergising gigamap relating all; b) biocorridors’ potential in the locality; c) interaction and codesign with the community; d) circular economy and blockchain; e) materials and prototyping.


Author. (2020). Article title. In Proceedings of Relating Systems Thinking and Design (RSD9) 2020 Symposium. India, October 9-17, 2020.

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Posted Oct-2020


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Author(s) (20XX). Article title. In Proceedings of Relating Systems Thinking and Design (RSDX) 20XX Symposium. City, Country, Month X-X, 20XX.

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Systems Mapping

Birger Sevaldson of the Oslo School of Architecture and Design first introduced the gigamap technique. The gigamap takes an architectural and descriptive approach to complex projects. The technique has been extended to synthesis maps and system design complexity maps.

The synthesis map is used at OCAD University to translate multiple knowledge perspectives and illustrate the dilemmas and challenges within a complex system scenario. System design complexity maps are the outcome of an academic project at the National Institute of Design. They use metaphor and a central theme to make complex issues accessible for sharing and participatory work with multiple stakeholders.

Types of Systemic Relations (Urban Habitat Design) by Birger Sevaldson, RSD5

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