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Design as Scholarship
The URBANbuild Program: Bridging Design, Construction, and Research
Rafael Novais Passarelli, Byron J. Mouton
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The premise of a design-build studio is that students engage directly in both the design and construction of full-scale prototypes, leading to a better understanding of how the act of design impacts the built environment. Furthermore, the collective commitment of participants working amidst a specific locale allows students to experience spatial transformation and contribute to meaningful social change. This study introduces the educational approach of the URBANbuild Program, its origins, development, key partners, community outreach, and accomplishments realized through fifteen residential prototypes. The essay demonstrates how a design-build pedagogy can bridge design, construction, and scholarship in architectural education.

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