Antoine Picon is the G. Ware Travelstead Professor of the History of Architecture and Technology and Director of Research at the Harvard Graduate School of Design. He teaches courses in the history and theory of architecture and technology. He is also Director of Research at the Ecole Nationale des Ponts et Chaussées in Paris. Trained as an engineer, architect, and historian, Picon works on the history of architectural and urban technologies from the eighteenth century to the present. He has published extensively on this subject. Four of his books are devoted to the transition from early-modern societies to the industrial era: French Architects and Engineers in the Age of Enlightenment (1988, English translation 1992), Claude Perrault (1613–1688) ou la curiosité d’un classique (1988),L’invention de L’ingénieur moderne, L’Ecole des Ponts et Chaussées 1747–1851 (1992), and Les Saint-Simoniens: Raison, Imaginaire, et Utopie (2002). With La Ville territoire des cyborgs (1998), Picon began to investigate the changes brought to cities and architecture by the development of the digital tools and digital culture.
Roland Snooks is the director of the architectural practice Studio Roland Snooks and a co-founder of the experimental research practice Kokkugia. Snooks’ architectural work explores the emergence of intricate formations from self-organising processes. He is an Associate Professor at RMIT University in the School of Architecture and Urban Design, where he directs the RMIT Architectural Robotics Lab. Snooks has previously taught widely in the US including at Columbia University, University of Pennsylvania, SCI-Arc and the Pratt Institute. Snooks’ design research is focused on the development of behavioral processes of formation that draw from the logic of swarm intelligence and the operation of multi-agent algorithms. He received a PhD from RMIT and holds a Masters in Advanced Architectural Design from Columbia University, where he studied on a Fulbright scholarship. His work has been published and exhibited widely and has been acquired by the permanent collections of the Centre Pompidou and the FRAC.
Mario Carpo is a Reyner Banham Professor of Architectural Theory and History, the Bartlett School of Architecture, University College London. Carpo’s research and publications focus on the relationship between architectural theory, cultural history, and the history of media and information technology. His Architecture in the Age of Printing (2001) has been translated into several languages. His most recent books are The Second Digital Turn: Design Beyond Intelligence (2017), The Alphabet and the Algorithm, (2011); and The Digital Turn in Architecture, 1992–2012, an AD Reader.
Jüri Soolep is the Head of PhD School in the Faculty of Architecture in Estonian Art Academy. He has been Guest-Professor in Umeå School of Architecture, Sweden and Prague European Centre of NC. He has been the Rector of the Nordic Academy of Architecture as well as dean and professor of the Faculty of Architecture in the Estonian Academy of Arts. He was involved in implementing the Architectural Policy of the Estonian Government and was the member of the European Commission Advisory Committee on Training and Education in the Field of Architecture. Jüri Soolep has lectured in the universities of Tartu, Oulu, Porto, Cork, Portsmouth, Liverpool, and Hosei Tokyo. He is in the editorial board of journals Ehituskunst and ArchiDoct. He has been a member of steering boards for Strong Research Environments ResArc and Making within Swedish Research Council Formas grant. Since 1991 he has been a partner and lead architect in the architectural studio AB Medium. Most of his designs are built in Pärnu and Tallinn. His current field of research include studies in the representational systems of architectural phenomena in the Digital Age. His lectures on history and theory of architecture deal with the archetypal structures, cultural patterns and political meanings in Europe.
Andres Kurg is professor of architectural history and visual culture at the Institute of Art History, Estonian Academy of Arts in Tallinn and Senior Research Fellow at the Faculty of History in Vilnius University. His academic work specializes on the Baltic countries and Russia during the Soviet era, with a special focus on the influence of technological transformations and changes in everyday life to the built environment from 1960s to 1980s. He studied art history at the Estonian Academy of Arts and architectural history at University College London.
His recent publications include “Werewolves on Cattle Street: Estonian Collective Farms and Postmodern Architecture” (in: Second World Postmodernisms. Ed. Vladimir Kulic, Bloomsbury 2019) and “Three Takes on the Environment” (in: Art and Theory of Post-1989 Central and Eastern Europe: A Critical Anthology. Ed. Ana Janevski, Roxana Marcoci, Ksenia Nouril, MoMA & Duke University Press 2018).
In 2018 he was the General Chair of the European Architectural History Network (EAHN) Fifth International Conference in Tallinn, the biennial conference of the largest professional forum for architectural history in Europe.
He has held several international fellowships, including at the Getty Research Institute in L.A. and Yale University, and received funding for his work from the Graham Foundation, EU Culture program and Estonian Cultural Endowment.
Jüri Kermik completed his design education at the Royal College of Art in 1998. His doctoral research focused on the history of plywood technology in furniture design. In 2002 Kermik published a monograph developed from his thesis ‘A. M. Luther 1877-1940: The Innovation of Form Arising from the Material’. The publication received the Estonian Annual Culture Award 2003. The resent publication as an author and editor is “New Pain. Young Estonian Design in the 1980s.” Estonian Museum of Applied Art and Design, 2018.
A continuing international presence founded on expertise in materials technology and experimental design applications is providing additional context for Kermik’s research projects in ecological design. As part of his academic leadership at the University of Brighton (UK) and commitment to values of interdisciplinary design, Kermik has also evolved a research profile in design pedagogy and curriculum design. His contributions to the design education discourse include articles and conference papers (Hong-Kong, DesignEd Asia, 2012; Brussels, Knowing by Designing, 2013; Tallinn, Dynamics of Theory and Practice, 2014).
Dr Maroš Krivý (1981) is an urbanist, writer and historian, currently Professor and Director of Urban Studies at the Faculty of Architecture, Estonian Academy of Arts. He works on a critical history of systems thinking in postwar urbanism in relation to three main themes: urban ecology, cybernetics and data platforms, and ideologies of “anti-planning”. His work has been published in leading journals such as Planning Theory, International Journal of Urban and Regional Research, Architectural Histories, Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians, Journal of Architecture, Perspecta, Footprint and Avery Review, and in many collections, most recently The Botanical City (jovis, 2020), Neoliberalism: An Architectural History (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2020) and Urban Platforms and the Future City (Routledge, 2021).
Renee Puusepp is a construction technology entrepreneur and the lead architect of 369 Pattern Building industrial construction system (https://patternbuildings.com). He is the CEO of Creatomus Solutions (https://www.creatomus.com) and works as a researcher at the Estonian Academy of Arts.
Renee finished his formal training and started professional career as an architect in Estonia, then completed a MSc in Computing and Design as well as a PhD in Architecture at the University of East London. In 2011, he was awarded a doctorate degree for the thesis investigating agent based techniques for advanced architectural modelling. His special interests lie in off-site construction, design for manufacturing and assembly, and using generative, parametric and programmable tools at the early stages of the design process.
Dr Urve Sinijärv (1969) is a landscape architect who received her professional education at the Jäneda State Farm Technical School in 1987–90 in the field of landscape design, in 1990–92 at the then Tallinn University of Arts in architecture and in 1994–97 at the Estonian Agricultural University in landscape architecture. After graduation, she worked in the Ministry of the Environment unitl 2017, where the main areas of activity were parks, landscapes and individual natural objects; natural and cultural heritage interfaces more broadly; and various land use and planning issues. More thorough work on protected parks brought Sinijärve back to the Estonian Academy of Arts in 2005 for doctoral studies, where in 2012 she defended her doctoral dissertation “Art and Nature in the Park” in the field of heritage protection and restoration. In addition, Sinijärv, as a compiler and co-author, has published several publications on landscape architecture and heritage conservation, the largest of which is the collection “Estonian Parks”. In 2016–17, Sinijärv worked as the Vice-Rector for Research of the Estonian Academy of Arts, and since 2018 she has been the director of the Tallinn Botanical Garden.
Dr Veronika Valk-Siska is a Chartered/Principal Architect VIII and researcher at the TalTech Academy of Architecture and Urban Studies, School of Engineering and of Smart City Centre of Excellence. Veronika teaches courses in architectural design and supervises Master and PhD theses. Veronika has been a partner researcher in different projects in the EU H2020, FP7, Nordic and Baltic research programmes. Prior to joining TalTech, Veronika established a practice based Doctoral Program in Architecture and Urban Planning at the Estonian Academy of Arts and served as the Head of the Programme. Under her leadership, the Doctoral Programme received significant funding for multi-university research alliances, including the 2013 Marie Curie Initial Training Network grant ADAPT-r, a collaboration between RMIT and six European universities. She has worked as an Expert evaluator for several Calls for proposals since 2009 by Creative Europe, FP7 and H2020 programmes. She has organized and been a Scientific Committee member of several international conferences and has been an invited keynote speaker at international conferences on architecture and urban planning. She has served as an advisor on architecture and design at the Ministry of Culture of Estonia and has helped to kick-start the Spatial Design Expert Group by the Government Office of Estonia. She is a co-Chair of an Open Method of Coordination (OMC) group of EU Member States’ experts on High-quality architecture and built environment for everyone. The OMC was launched in 2020 in line with the Davos Declaration "Towards a high-quality Baukultur for Europe" adopted by the European Ministers of Culture in January 2018, which highlights the central role of culture in the built environment. The OMC group will work in an integrated and balanced approach to the built environment while focusing on the specific contributions made by architectural policies and practices. "Quality architecture" in this context is not only defined by aesthetics and functionality but also by its contribution to people’s quality of life and to the sustainable development of our cities and rural areas. The OMC is administrated by European Commission operates in accordance with the Work Plan for Culture 2019-2022. As an architect, Veronika has constructed both public and private buildings, designed interiors and landscapes. Laureate of Young Architect Award 2012, she has won dozens of prizes at various architecture and planning competitions since 2000. She was the Artistic Director of Tallinn Festival of Light in 2005-2008. Today, she is also an Advisory Board Member of the Tallinn Architecture Biennale and Member of Advisory Board of the Architects Association in Estonia.