DigitalFUTURES Workshops


Architectural Intelligence

29 June-6 July : DigitalFUTURES Workshops 
7 -8 July : DigitalFUTURES Conference 

NO FEES: Students are responsible for travel and accommodation costs


Application Deadline: May 17, 2019

Any student/architect with a bachelor’s degree or higher is eligible to apply for a place on these workshops.

Computational Design and Engineering of Tensioned Formworks for Concrete Shells

Philippe Block, Tom Van Mele ETH Zurich

This will be an intense workshop based on COMPAS software to design and realize a large-scale concrete shell, built using a cable-net+fabric formwork. Students on this workshop need to have a good command of Python.

F5: Fashioning Fabricators for Flexible Forms

Achim Menges, Maria Yablonina, Samuel Leder ICD Stuttgart

The workshop will explore the recent trend of collective robotic construction through the implementation of bespoke mobile machines to create adaptable spaces.

Acquire, Deliver and Design: Integrated Systems for Urban Densification

Patrik Schumacher, Shajay Bhooshan (ZHA/CODE)

This workshop aims to develop a necessary, sustainable and dynamic urban intensification model through digital empowerment. Drawing upon physical and social information from the site and consumer communities, the intention is to develop a design based on the core information obtained through digital technology that is subsequently constructed using robotic fabrication.

Robotic Timber Fabrication

Gilles Retsin Bartlett

This workshop will explore the possibilities of Augmented Reality with modular timber assemblies. We will develop a set of serialized, modular, CNC milled, plywood building blocks, engineered to perform in any structural situation. We will experiment with tracking the building blocks and generating real-time feedback between the physical and digital space, using a hololens headset.

X-Form: Generative Architectural Design and Realization Based on Topological Optimization

Yi Min (Mike) XIE, Nic Dingwen BAO, Xin YAN RMIT

This workshop will introduce the new approach of generative architectural design. Students will be taught how to develop their architectural design skills through the application of topological optimization (BESO) and the new software, Ameba. Students will be required to complete a series of tasks from small scale to large scale – to design a pavilion individually, to design and 3D print nodes working in pairs, and finally to work together to construct a lightweight pavilion with carefully designed nodes and membranes.

Mobile Urban Environments in Mixed Reality

Biayna Bogosian USC, Runze Zhang, Alessio Grancini Doorwi

This workshop focuses on the development of a collaborative Mixed Reality mobile application that allows the users to sense and interact with urban environmental data while exploring the city. Students will develop situated and context-aware environmental sensing and visualization workflows, in order to elevate the environmental literacy of the architects and urban designers.


Matias del Campo, Sandra Manninger University of Michigan

Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality technologies offer the potential of a synthetic ecology between physical environments and computationally driven information. This workshop applies AR/VR to fabrication, exploring the emerging potential of AR/VR applications in the field of architecture. The workshop will lead to a digitally fabricated installation.

Jazz Urbanism

Neil Leach, Claudiu Barsan Tongji University

This workshop explores the possibility of using advanced machine learning to generate patterns of urbanism. It exploits the logic of pattern recognition and prediction – which lies at the heart of AI – as a generative technique to trace existing patterns and extrapolate variations on those patterns – much like the logic of jazz. Students need to have some knowledge of programming.

Artificial Intelligence and Architecture


This workshop will provide an overview of mainstream models in artificial intelligence. On the basis of this knowledge, attendees will learn the methods to collect and process architectural data of existing buildings, find the most suitable neural network model for training a “form-finding machine”, thus generating architectural forms with combined features.

AI in Urban Design:Image Discrimination Model and Urban Evaluation Systems

Wanyu He, Chun Li, Xiaodi Yang, Jackie Yong XKool Technology

This workshop explores how urban image data such as satellite images and street view images might be used as resources for analyzing and understanding cities. Last year, we introduced an image discrimination model based on a deep learning technique, Convolutional Neural Networks. This year, the workshop will attempt to further explore how this model might be used as a tool of analysis and evaluation at a specific city scale - the street scale – and test it out for decision making in architectural design and urban planning.

Smart City Decision-Making

Tang Ge, Huang Jixiao/Dapeng, Feng Zongliang MetroDataTech (City Data Group)

This workshop will address urban big data. Students will learn how to manage city databases, use urban data research techniques, and combine machine learning and artificial intelligence with urban research. They will also learn how to cooperate on an urban research project, just as designing an internet product.

Agent-based UAV Automated Fabrication of a Discrete Structure

Xiang Wang, Philip F. Yuan Tongji; Shixian Yu LINKS

This workshop will attempt to explore the potential of developing a digitally controlled strategy based on multi-terminal collaborative intelligent fabrication, in order to establish related workflows through the application of key technologies. The challenge is to design a discrete structure, using multi-agent systems to autonomously fit the target structural form, and generate relevant construction strategies, with the aim of eventually fabricating a small-scale structure.

Multi-Material Robotic Fabrication*

Philip F. Yuan, Hua Chai, Liming Zhang, Yige Liu Tongji

What can robots do when they are endowed with intelligent perception? And what new material properties can a fusion of wood, synthetic resin and fibrous materials exhibit? This workshop will address these two challenges, and result in the construction of two experimental structures.

*Workshop already full

To register please email completed application form (with list of 3 workshops in order of preference), CV and portfolio to

Workshop Exhibition Opening: 6 July
DigitalFUTURES conference: 7-8 July

For details of previous workshops:

Application Form Download Link:

Baidu Pan/

Google Drive/



The DigitalFUTURES summer program of workshops, conferences, exhibitions and publications began with a series of collaborations between the American Academy in China [AAC] and Tongji University that begun in 2011. Since then DigitalFUTURES has emerged as one of the largest and most significant summer programs in digital fabrication and computational design in the world. In 2018 DigitalFUTURES is extending this summer program to include an international PhD program, building upon the successes of the previous DigitalFUTURES events


Those who have participated in the DigitalFUTURES program include Thom Mayne (Morphosis), Ma Yansong (MAD Architects), Philip F Yuan (Tongji), Achim Menges (ICD), Philippe Block (ETH Zurich), Neil Leach (Tongji), Meejin Yoon (MIT), Patrik Schumacher (ZHA), Cristiano Ceccato (ZHA), Shajay Bhooshan (ZHA), Astrid Piber (UN Studio), Rem D Koolhaas (United Nude), Roland Snooks (RMIT), Antoine Picon (Harvard GSD), Panagiotis Michelatos (Harvard GSD), Johannes Braumann (TU Wien), Matias del Campo and Sandra Manninger (UMich), Steven Ma (Xuberance), Yu Lei (Tsinghua), Yan Gao (HKU), Philip Beesley (University of Waterloo), Gang Song (SCUT), Wendong Wang (CAFA), Michael Fox (Cal Poly Pomona), Qingyun Ma (USC), Alvin Huang (USC), Behnaz Farahi (USC), Biayna Bogosian (USC), and Behrokh Khoshnevis (USC).


Books that have been published as a result of the DigitalFUTURES initiative include:

  • Neil Leach, Philip F Yuan (eds.), Scripting the Future, Shanghai: Tongji University Press, 2011

  • Philip F Yuan, Neil Leach (eds.), Fabricating the Future,Shanghai: Tongji University Press, 2011

  • Philip F Yuan, Achim Menges, Neil Leach (eds.), Robotic Futures, Shanghai: Tongji University Press, 2015

  • Philip F Yuan, Neil Leach (eds.), Digital Workshop in China,Shanghai: Tongji University Press, 2013

  • Philip F Yuan, From Diagrammatic Thinking to Digital Fabrication, Shanghai: Tongji University Press, 2016

  • Neil Leach, Roland Snooks (eds.), Swarm Intelligence: Architectures of Multi-Agent Systems, Shanghai: TongjiUniversity Press, 2017

  • Philip F Yuan, Achim Menges, Neil Leach (eds.), Digital Fabrication, Shanghai: Tongji University Press, 2017

  • Neil Leach, Philip F Yuan (eds.), Computational Design,Shanghai: Tongji University Press, 2017

2018 DigitalFUTURES

  • Instructors: Patrik Schumacher, Shajay Bhooshan, Taole Chen, Federico Borello, Xuexin Duan

  • Instructors: Biayna Bogosian, Maider Llaguno-Munitxa, Wei Zang

  • Instructors: Matias Del Campo, Sandra Manninger

  • Instructors: Behnaz Farahi, Jifei Ou

  • Instructors: Wanyu He, Chun Li, Guangyang Nie, Jackie Yong

  • Instructors: Achim Menges, Tiffany Cheng, Dylan Wood

  • Instructors: Alessio Erioli

  • Instructors: Kostas Terzidis, Hyejin Lee

  • Instructors: Jiong Xu

  • Instructors: Fangshuo Mo, Philip F. Yuan, Yao Zhao

  • Instructors: Philip F. Yuan, Hua Chai

  • Instructors: Philip F. Yuan, Liming Zhang, Zhewen Chen

  • Instructors: Neil Leach, Xinghua Lu, Chao Yan, Jianjia Zhou

  • Instructors: Philip F. Yuan, Jiawei Yao, Yuqiong Lin

2017 DigitalFUTURES

  • Instructors: Philippe Block, Shajay Bhooshan, Vishu Bhooshan, David Reeves

  • Instructors: Achim Menges, Martin Alvarez, Erik Martinez

  • Instructors: Behnaz Farahi & Neil Leach

  • Instructors: Biayna Bogosian, Wei Zang

  • Instructors: Xiang Wang

  • Instructors: Wendong Wang

  • Instructors: Chengyu Sun, Dabo Chen, Xiaoyu Song, Jeff Loomis

  • Instructors: Philip F. Yuan, Jingyun Zheng, Jiawei Yao

  • Instructors: Philip F. Yuan, Hao Yin

  • Instructors: Philip F. Yuan, Gang Meng, Liming Zhang

  • Instructors: Philip F. Yuan, Gang Meng, Hua Chai

2016 DigitalFUTURES

  • Instructors: Philip F. Yuan

  • Instructors: Philip F. Yuan, Hao Meng

  • Instructors: Philip F. Yuan, Hua Chai

  • Instructors: Philip F. Yuan

  • Instructors: Neil Leach, Behnaz Farahi

  • Instructors: Roland Snooks

  • Instructors: Matias del Campo & Sandra Manninger

2015 DigitalFUTURES

  • Instructors: Roland Snooks, Cameron Newnham, Hao Meng

  • Instructors: Matias del Campo & Sandra Manninger

  • Instructors: Weiguo Xu, Lei Yu, Ali Gharakhani

  • Instructors: Johannes Braumann, Daniel Goldbach, Elisa Lublasser

  • Instructors: Roland Snooks

  • Instructors: Philip F. Yuan

  • Instructors: Zhenfei Wang, Luming Wang, Cong Gao

  • Instructors: Yan Gao, Tiantian Lo

  • Instructors: Zhenfei Wang, Luming Wang, Cong Gao

  • Instructors: Huayin Zhong, Xin Yuan

  • Instructors: Achim Menges, Abel Groemewolt, Oliver David Krieg, Mingjian Huang

  • Instructors: Rem D. Koolhas, Steven Ma, Michal Kukucka, Xichen Zhao, Christos Koukis, Himmel Wang, Tianhao Lou, Thomas Bagnoli

2014 DigitalFUTURES

  • Instructors: Philip F. Yuan, Hyde Meng, Panagiotis Michalatos

  • Instructors: Panagiotis Michalatos, Qi Su

  • Instructors: Lei Yu

  • Instructors: Yunsheng Su

  • Instructors: Philip F. Yuan, Panagiotis Michalatos

  • Instructors: Philip F. Yuan, Panagiotis Michalatos

  • Instructors: Philip F. Yuan, Matias del Campo & Sandra Manninger

  • Instructors: Philip F. YUAN, Yihe Ma, Zhun Zhang, Alex Han, Junchao Shen, Hyde MENG, Kai Li

2013 DigitalFUTURES

  • Instructors: Philip F. YUAN, Qi Su

  • Instructors: Philip F. Yuan, Matias del Campo & Sandra Manninger

  • Instructors: Philip F. Yuan, Neil Leach, Qi Su, Biayna Bogosian

2012 DigitalFUTURES

  • Instructors: Philip F. YUAN, Chengyu Sun

  • Instructors: Neil Leach, Weiyu Huo, Alvin Huang

  • Instructors: Philip F. Yuan, Neil Leach, Michael Fox, Weiyu Huo, Alvin Huang

2011 DigitalFUTURES

  • Instructors: Philip F. Yuan

  • Instructors: Philip F. Yuan

  • Instructors: Roland Snooks

  • Instructors: Neil Leach, Gang Song

  • Instructors: Roland Snooks

  • Instructors: Philip F. Yuan

  • Instructors: Evan Douglis, Philip F. Yuan

  • Instructors: Neil Leach, Gang Song

Copyright © 2017 CAUP, Tongji University