AGENCY - 'Transformative Research into Architectural Practice and Education' is a research centre initiated in 2007 at the School of Architecture. It was formed through the alliance of staff and researchers working in and around the subject of architectural practice and education, and taking a critical view of normative values and standard procedures in this area, in order to propose alternatives.
AGENCY is potentially a provocative name for a research group in a School of Architecture. It was chosen to give an immediate sense of the research in the group being active, engaged, and outward looking. It also indicates the non-hierarchical structuring of our group and the dynamic nature of our collaborations. It implies change, with a hint of subversive irony. It asks questions about 'agency' in architecture.
The strapline 'Transformative Research into Architectural Practice and Education' expands the idea, stressing the word `transformative´ to suggest a research activity that both creates and responds to shifting conditions. Instead of remaining passively (and safely) contained within our academic environments, we see ourselves as agents acting both within and between the fields of research, practice, education, and civic life.
The AGENCY projects shown here are about this expanded field; they are instances of crossing boundaries, of seeking new collaborations, and of redefining given parameters and conditions.

Members of AGENCY: Cristina Cerulli, Florian Kossak, Doina Petrescu, Tatjana Schneider, Renata Tyszczuk, Stephen Walker and Peter Blundell Jones, Prue Chiles, Rosie Parnell, Sarah Wigglesworth.


Sheffield, United Kingdom

Sheffield, United Kingdom
United Kingdom
53.3830548 , -1.4647953

Live projects

Live Projects are a pioneering educational initiative at the University of Sheffield School of Architecture, bringing masters students with organisations in real time, with real budgets for a six week.

ECO-Nomadic School

The nomadic and temporary school for mutual learning and teaching of eco-civic practices in different regions of Europe will reinforce democratic values by the transfer of skills and knowledge on issues of resilience in different urban contexts, involving participants of diverse ages and social and cultural backgrounds.  The project is based on a partnership between 4 organisations already activating in the transmission of ecological skills and knowledge: (AAA-FR, AGENCY/ UoS-UK, MyVillage-AL and FCDL-RO) and takes support from the EU network RHYZOM, in which these partners are involved.

Four exemplary European urban contexts are targeted: metropolitan suburban (FR), post-industrial urban, (UK) suburban rural (AL) isolated rural (Ro).

The project has 3 phases:

I - participative training workshop organised by AAA in the suburban area of Northern Paris, involving students and teachers from SSoA, administrative personnel and local organisations from Colombes, community organisations from Brezoi, specialists and trainers from Rhyzom and My Village to identify possibilities for implementation and explore methods for teaching and learning of ecological practices (ie. eco- and self-building, reuse, recycling, urban agriculture, handcrafts, alternative economy etc.).

II -  mutual teaching and learning through a series of four civic seminars and ‘live projects’ (organised by each partner and involving  the trainees from phaseI which will now act as trainers, local residents and organisations) on issues and practices of everyday life ecology, within the framework of a nomadic classroom in Colombes-Fr, Sheffield-UK, Hofen-Al, Brezoi-Ro

III - dissemination through symposium co-organised by all partners in Paris and involving a number of trainees, which will diffuse eco-civic knowledge, skills and practices at European scale and rise interest within other publics on ecological and civic values + a nomadic exhibition and local distribution of fanzines and leaflets in different languages as well as via the internet.

The ECO-Nomadic School project has received support from the EC lifelong learning programme Grundtvig,

website by dorian moore @ the useful arts organisation