Placemaking can contribute to creating learning spaces which are integrated into the community, rather than confined to the classroom. Educational activities designed as part of the placemaking process can support methodologies like action learning meaning “learning from action or concrete experience” and then taking a new action as a result of the learning. The confluence of placemaking with artistic practices offers an opportunity to integrate pedagogical activities into the cultural, social and physical milieu. In the collaborative reflective processes which placemaking conveys, artists and educational staff, students and residents all become knowledge providers through learning processes embedded in a sociophysical territory. In placemaking, “knowledges of the professional, the place, and the local people are shared, disputed, negotiated, and considered” (Schneekloth & Shibley, 2000). Architects participating in placemaking have the opportunity “to engage in the practice and discipline of architecture beyond expert culture”. This requires to relocate architecture, to “emplace” it as to make it part of “a larger practice of place”. Integrating placemaking in the curricula can help to emplace architectural education, and to foster a situated learning which is embedded into the sociophysical territories. Emplacement of learning conveys the direct exposition of learners with its history, with people who can describe a place through their life experiences. A visual exploration of the physical territory can help to create mental maps of the territory, but the meanings that embodies need to be discovered in conversations with people and in historical records of the experience of last generations. Within the A-Place project, co-funded by the Creative Europe programme, we have carried out a comprehensive situated learning process in the city of L’Hospitalet (Barcelona, Spain) for citizens and students to learn about the meaning of place. The programme included mapping of the sociophysical territory carried out onsite – pedagogic activities in public spaces and public facilities, urban walks with neighbours representing diverse social groups– and online – digital maps and social media–; and learning activities with high-school pupils and architecture students to jointly identify meanings associated to places and represent them with texts, images, videos and installations in public space.
Dr. Leandro Madrazo. He is a full professor at La Salle School of Architecture, Ramon Llull University in Barcelona and director of the research group ARC Engineering and Architecture La Salle since its creation in 1999. He graduated with a degree in architecture from the Polytechnic University of Catalonia (1984), and later studied as Fulbright scholar in the master of architecture programmes at Harvard University and the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) where he obtained a master’s degree (1988). From 1990 to 1999 he carried out his teaching and research work in the Department of Architecture and CAAD at ETH Zürich, where he obtained his PhD (1995) with the thesis “The concept of type in architecture: an inquiry into the nature of architectural form”. His teaching activity integrates architecture theory and representation, art and media (“Systems of Representation” www.salleurl.edu/sdr), as well as courses on housing studies and design methodology. His pedagogic research focuses on the conception, development and application of new educational environments in the field of architecture resulting from the integration of ICT with different areas of the curricula: Representation, design and theory. The results of his research work have been widely disseminated in international conferences, scientific journals and books (www.oikonet.org/global_dwelling). He has coordinated the EU-funded projects HOUSING@21.EU “Emerging forms of housing and living in 21st century” (2003–2006), OIKODOMOS “A Virtual Campus to promote the study of Dwelling in contemporary Europe” (www.oikodomos.org) (2007–2009, 2010–2011), and OIKONET “A global multidisciplinary network on housing research and learning” (www.oikonet.org) (2013-2016). He has been co-coordinator of the research project PROHABIT (2015-1208) “Multidisciplinary analysis of the lived environment to promote the implementation of the right to the city” (http://www.prohabit.org/en), co-funded by the RecerCaixa programme. He has led the UMVA “Unidad Móvil de Video Arquitectura” programme (umvascreen.blogspot.com), carried out in conjunction with the Loop Barcelona festival, from 2012 to 2017. He is the coordinator of the A-Place project (https://www.a-place.eu/) co-funded by the Creative Europe programme (2019-2023) and RE-DWELL (https://www.re-dwell.eu/) , co-funded by the Marie Skłodowska-Curie (2020-2024).