Architecture Workroom

Making City—5th International Architecture Biennale Rotterdam

The 5th Internationale Architecture Biennale Rotterdam (IABR) takes the view that current massive worldwide urbanisation is compelling us to rethink the way we govern, plan and design our cities. Joachim Declerck from Architecture Workroom is a member of the curatorial team.

The world is urbanising at breakneck speed. Today, 50% of the world’s population is living in cities, and this percentage is expected to increase to 80% by 2050. No wonder that the 21st century is called the ‘age of the city’. Current planning principles and procedures are still based on the 19th and 20th century nation-state, and as such completely unsuited to respond to the new demographic, socio-economic and cultural challenges that have become manifest in these cities. There’s an urgent need for more effective tools for ‘making cities’. 

With these facts in mind, the 5th IABR is focusing on ‘politically and spatially innovative projects’ to facilitate the forming of new relationships and interactions between politics, planning and design. Design will not just be put to the task of ‘solving problems’, but also put to good use as a steering entity, inventing and working out innovative political and planning principles.  By linking urban problems, political decision-making and design, the 5th IABR intends to stimulate new alliances, design tools and ‘governance’.

In close collaboration with local authorities and partners, the 5th IABR is initiating and coordinating three innovation processes on emblematic ‘Test Sites’, in Rotterdam, Istanbul and São Paulo. These Test Sites will serve as examples for three significant evolutions and challenges requiring a new vision on planning systems. In parallel, the 5th IABR is launchinglaunched an appeal to submit so-called ‘CounterSites’: planning processes, projects or urban planning studies presenting novel views on the relationship between (urban) politics, planning and design. In this way, the Biennial will provide opportunities for a broad exchange of knowledge between politicians, planning services, researchers, designers and other parties concerned. 

The results of this research and development trajectory will be made public in from the 20thof April 2012 onwards and presented as an exhibition, a publication and an ‘urban summit’ conference. 

International Team of Curators 5th IABR

George Brugmans (NL): president of the Team of Curators – general director of the IABR

Henk Ovink (NL): curator – director of National Spatial Planning  (Ministry of Infrastructure and the Environment)

Joachim Declerck (B): curator main exhibition – program director of Architecture Workroom and project leader at the Berlage Institute

ZUS (NL): curator Test Site Rotterdam – bureau Zones Urbaines Sensibles

MMBB (BR): curator Test Site Sao Paulo – MMBB Architects, São Paulo 

Asu Aksoy (TR): curator Test Site Istanbul – researcher and assistant professor at the Istanbul Bilgi University, Communications Faculty


atelier, input/output, ongoing, think tank


Project definition—new prison in Haren
Building for Brussels— Architecture and urban transformation in Europe
Making City—Atelier Istanbul
G A R D E N— Parckdesign 2012
Open House Brussels—debates and artistic parcours
Exhibition—Making City
Exploring the metropolitan condition
The Next Economy— Belgium at The International Architecture Biennale 2016
Master Class—120% Brussels
City Trajectory—Brussels Canal
Program—Building For Brussels
Exhibition—Building for Brussels
Exhibition—Architecture for Justice
Concept studios—Spatial Policy Plan of Flanders
Article A+ 282 village— Cultivate the food landscape
Vacancy - Operational Director (w/m/x)
Delta Atelier document
Vacancy— Research collaborators
Vacancy— Communication manager
Transition— Learning, living, working in 2050
Publication— Architectuurcultuur in Vlaanderen (only in NL)
Workshop II— Delta Atelier Urban Management
Air For Schools workshop— Keizer Karellaan and Leopold II-tunnel
Netwerkbijeenkomst— Ontwerp met Beleid
Bap! Biennale of architecture and landscape of Île-de-France— 1st edition
Socio-spatial study— Baudelo Building Ghent
Water+Land+Scape approved
Urbanising in Place— Rosario Workshop
Social-spatial research— Ghent Sint-Pieters
Brussels Urban Landscape Biennial Edition 2018— Rising Waters
You Are Here - Brussels
Announcement — IABR-THE MISSING LINK Rotterdam and Brussels
Urbanising in Place— Building the Food-Water-Energy nexus
IABR–2018+2020–The Missing Link— Delta Atelier
Antwerp— Mapping the shift of metropolitan phenomena in Berchem extra muros
Publication— Designing the Future
CS Genk— Campus Bret 21st century learning landscape
IABR-Atelier Rotterdam— and test site M4H
IABR–Atelier East Flemish Regio— Has left the starting blocks
Regional Call IABR-Atelier OVK— Help shape the future of the East Flanders Core region
IABR-Atelier Rotterdam— Energy transition as an urban project
IABR-Atelier Rotterdam— Call to Architects
Open Space Platform— Call Water-Land-Schap
Water as Leverage for Resilient Cities: Asia
Open Space Platform— Publication Operation Open Space
THE MISSING LINK— Curator Statement, Research Agenda and Call for Practices
Atelier Zennevallei
Urban Intervention — BRIDGE
Workshop Series — Urban Economy in the Brussels Metropolitan Area
Lecture and Debate — Fitting More Industry In
Rotterdam Biennale appoints three curators for diptych 2018+2020
A Whole World to Win— Floris Alkemade in conversation with Els Vervloesem and Joachim Declerck
Masterclass— Caring Neighborhoods
Atelier Kortrijk 2025— Innovative urban development strategy
Designing The Future— series of debates
Atelier Brussels— Masterclasses
Atelier Brussels— Lectures Structure and Stimulus
Atelier Brussels— Urban Walks
Antwerp— Study to map the livability of neighbourhoods
Atelier Brussels— Expo A Good City Has Industry
Spoor Oost— Urban Renewal Project
City of Bruges— Week of the City
Zeebrugge Revitalisation— Urban Renewal Project
Torhout— experiential and identity study
Launch OASE 96 Social Poetics— The Architecture of Use and Appropriation
From cure to care— transitions in the healthy city of Utrecht
Atelier Brussels— Urban Meeting IABR
Urban Meeting Bozar— The Productive Metropolis
Imagine Europe— Bozar
Atelier Brussels— The Productive Metropolis
Call for design teams— Atelier Brussels The Productive Metropolis
Development strategy— Ostend Eastern Shore
Review of spatial structure plan— Bruges City
The City as Factory— Buda Workroom
Colloquium — Architecture in Belgium and Turkey: Changing practices
Architecture Culture Platform
Ghent Muide-Meulestede
IABR 2016 — Atelier Utrecht: The Healthy City
Publication—Reweaving the Urban Carpet
Eurodelta 2030 - 2100
Eurometropolitan Blue Space
Atelier— Productive BXL
Atelier de Stad— Brussels
Lecture — Mark Brearley
Festival Kanal Play Ground
Metropolitan Coast Landscape 2100
IABR 2014 Urban by Nature— Atelier Brabantstad
Exploration of the Future of Flemish Land Company (VLM)
Productive Space By Design— conference
Strategic vision— Kern Rechteroever in Aalst
Strategic exploration— pilot projects productive landscape
Atelier— In Between
Atelier à Habiter— Exhibition
Preparatory workshop— development plan for Sidaplax in Ghent
Atelier De Stad Brussels— Kanal Play Ground
International Atelier— Eurometropolis
Expert advice— 'Nieuw Gent'
Preparatory workshop— housing development plan in Kapellen
Publication—The Ambition of the Territory
Symposium—Naar een gedeelde ontwerpagenda voor Vlaanderen
Vlaanderen als Ontwerp— Atelier
The Ambition of the Territory— deSingel International Arts Campus
Lecture—Carolyn Steel - The Hungry City
Changing Cultures of Planning— Rotterdam, Zürich, Nantes, Randstad, Bordeaux
Towards a Visionary Housing Production in Flanders
Guide plan—Brussels canal
The Ambition of the Territory—Belgian Pavilion Venice 2012
Making City—5th International Architecture Biennale Rotterdam
With structural support from the Flemish government and regular support from the Brussels capital region and other regional and local governments.