The Urban Design Reader features work produced by students and staff from HafenCity University’s Urban Design master’s programme. Its content revolves around the question of what it means to organise/materialise new modes of co-living in today’s urban conditions and offers perspectives from teaching, research and practice to enable discussions about what could happen in the future: A catalogue of architectural yet socially produced assets, writings on ethics, methods, tools, theories and discourses in urban design, intimate reports of actual urban practices in relation to critical investigations into urban issues. What you can read here online as well as print off as pdf are issues of knowledge production representing an improvised urban vis-à-vis mainstream planning horizon.
Representation tools, traditionally reserved for the design, the plan and ultimately the prospective production of architecture, are here retrospectively applied to the analysis of existing buildings and urban situations. Our methodological concern with representation is the diagrammatic interplay of visual and textual media with which it is possible to describe (urban) spatial situations in their specific contextual situation. The arrangement of these contributions on the platform Urban Design Reader allows rendering visible differences and analogies within its epistemological spaces and seeks to make the urban production not only to a matter of concern but a contentious matter.



The academic work of the Urban Design teaching and research programme begins with the development of a motif. Every motif needs structure and form in its realization. The web designers Laslo Strong and Dodo Völkl developed the platform Urban Design Reader on the content management system Kirby. We would like to thank the entire Kirby team for their development work and support.

HafenCity Universität Hamburg
HafenCity University Hamburg - University of Architecture and Metropolitan Development (HCU) is a university with a thematic focus on the built environment. The HCU unites under one roof all aspects of the production of the urban in design, engineering and natural sciences as well as humanities and social sciences. The HCU is organised on an interdisciplinary basis. One of the university's special qualities is that all subject areas are integrated into research and teaching. Applicability, technical knowledge, multi-perspective reflections and creative design are the characteristics of the education at HCU.

Zuzana Kostelanska, Laslo Strong, Dodo Voelkel