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ENVD Students Analyze the Built Environment in Copenhagen

Copenhagen Trip

During summer semester 2013, a group of ENVD capstone class students and their instructor, Magdalena Garmaz, spent three weeks in Copenhagen, Denmark studying at the renown Danish Institute for Study Abroad (DIS). This was a launch of the ENVD Copenhagen Study Abroad program, a unique program that takes place in the first summer mini-semester, and that is offered in collaboration with the DIS.

Copenhagen is the world’s most livable city, and the city with the happiest citizens according to many different surveys; contemporary Danish design has at its core the reinforcement of the quality of life at every scale. While living and studying in Copenhagen students learned from the top design professionals and visited a number of different projects that are at the cutting edge of the sustainability and design discourse.  ENVD students were able to see first hand a pragmatic application of this approach in visits to the world renown design offices such as Gehl Architects and Cobe, that introduced them to projects such as Nordhavnen (a design of a new community  for 40,000 people in the Copenhagen harbor). 

Of particular interest was a series of lectures by DIS faculty, including Kelly Nelson’s which introduced issues of Nordic architecture and its use of materials and light; Bianca Hermansen’s lectures dealt with issues of bicycle urbanism; there was a workshop with Christian Dalsdorf from Force4 office, that dealt with design process as perceived by both clients and designers for the Danish House of Disabled People's Organizations building.

While in Copenhagen, students worked on individual projects researching and analyzing different systems that define built environment.