Philosophies 2018

This course aims to address how the researcher in architecture can make use of the plethora of philosophies available to them, both from within and from without the discipline. We will place a special emphasis on the two-way conceptual traffic between architecture and philosophy, in the recognition of the reciprocal relationship of influence these two disciplines have historically maintained with respect to each other. What are the strategies and tactics that can be fruitfully employed to engage in diverse philosophies from the point of view of the discipline of architecture? How does the architectural researcher maintain a creative and critical relay between theory and practice? How can concepts and arguments (drawn from philosophy and elsewhere) be mobilized by the architectural researcher?

In light of past, present and looming crises, environmental, social, and subjective, this Philosophies PhD course will take up the near-exhausted concept of the Anthropocene in order to explore how current research in architecture and cognate fields locates itself in relation to pressing matters of care. How do you identify your local environment-world when it comes to your ecologies of research practice? What kinds of ‘things’ are relevant to your research, how do you collect, define, invent, and make your research artefacts (from essays to architectural and artistic installations)? How do you bring modes of creative and critical thinking into engagement with your research practices? As such, the course is organized according to the three themes of: 1. environment-worlds; 2. things; 3. thinkables.

We will discuss ways of: radically rethinking the literature review; reframing our research problems; expanding our methodological practices, with an emphasis on critical thinking and practice; and exploring possibilities for ethics in action.

Intended Learning Outcomes

By attending this course participants can expect to develop skills in:

  1. Ability to collaboratively define key concepts and arguments introduced in the course literature and beyond
  2. Ability to practice close reading and critical and creative writing exercises and upload these onto a seminar Blog
  3. Ability to theorise self-directed design research projects using key concepts and arguments
  4. Ability to create new or hybrid concepts and thereby develop arguments pertinent to current research projects
  5. Ability to actively participate in seminar discussions at a high level


Course Credits

Participants can achieve either 5 or 7.5 credit points for this course.

  • To achieve 5 credit points participants are required to attend 2 modules, and complete an assignment
  • To achieve 7.5 credit points participants are required to attend 3 modules and complete an assignment

NOTE – Credit points breakdown: 2.5 credit points participation; 2.5 credit points course module tasks (blog posts); 2.5 credit points final hand-in (conceptual guidebook).


Key Dates

February 22-23 2018 at KTH Stockholm

Philosophies Course Module One – Environment-worlds

March 22-23 2018 at KTH Stockholm

Philosophies Course Module Two – Things

April 26-27 2018 at KTH Stockholm

Philosophies Course Module Three – Thinkables

September 20-21 2018 at KTH Stockholm



  1. Participants will be asked to upload a minimum of 2 image and text Blog posts per module. These will be based on pre-assigned tasks, as well as on tasks explored in the seminar itself. See the Module descriptions for more details on tasks. Aim to write between 200-500 words per Blog post.
  2. Participants will be invited to incrementally contribute to the compilation of a CONCEPTUAL TOOLBOX in response to the essays discussed in Philosophies,  in response to the guest lectures, general discussions, and ALSO in relation to your emerging research and literature review. The Conceptual Toolbox will generate a ‘glossary’ of key concepts that can be shared by all participants, as well as future participants in the course, and those who read the Blog. Some of this conceptual labour will be undertaken in small groups during the seminars in workshop sessions.
  3. CONCLUSION TASK: Participants will be asked to create a CONCEPTUAL GUIDEBOOK. You are encouraged to frame your image and text responses throughout the seminar according to a theme that is relevant to your research. Add to your Conceptual Guidebook: 1. a title, 2. a contents page, 3. an introduction, 4. and responses based on a minimum of 6 Blog posts; 5. Conclusion: This is where you are invited to reflect on what you have achieved, and what discoveries you have made in Philosophies. You will have 15 minutes to present your Conceptual Guidebook at the Conclusion Module, you will be assigned a reviewer or ‘close reader’ from among your peers. As a point of reference see Masters level project examples: or else previous submissions in Philosophies at You will see here that a Conceptual Guidebook can be widely interpreted, but I encourage you to devise means to invite your reader into your work, to inspire them to interact with your guidebook. Take care to make sure there is a strong correspondence between images and text, and feel free to discuss your approach to your graphic approach in the introduction or the conclusion. DRAFT DUE FRIDAY 7 SEPTEMBER (send via email). FINAL REVISED SUBMISSION DUE FRIDAY 5 OCTOBER: For your final submission upload your ‘Conceptual Guidebook’ as a pdf under the category: ‘Conceptual Guidebook’
  4. Peer-to-peer Responses: every Conceptual Guidebook will be assigned at least one reviewer from among your peers. Reviewers will make comments and address questions to their peers following the presentation of work at the concluding module. Reviewers are asked to make a comment below the relevant blog post where the work has been uploaded after it has been revised and resubmitted on 5 October 2018.


First you need to be able to login to this Philosophies Blog. You will be able to login once you receive an invitation from hjfrichot in your email inbox. You will need to follow the prompts in the email. If you do not already have a WordPress user account that will be the first thing you will need to create (NOTE: This does not mean you have to make your own blog!).

Once you login you need to either go to the ‘dashboard’ (press the ‘philosophies’ icon in top left corner of page and select ‘dashboard’ from the drop down menu) or else to ‘site admin’ (see bottom of page). This will place you BEHIND THE SCENES of the Philosophies Blog, where you will be able to upload a post.

THEN select POSTS from the menu bar on the left, and then ADD NEW (to add a new post!). You will see there is a place to include a title, and then a text box for your fine words. You can also add media (select ADD MEDIA box), for instance, the image that we ask you to upload with your text (preferably as a jpeg). IMPORTANTLY you need to select a Category in the right hand side of the page…select RESPONSES MODULE ONE; TWO; THREE depending on which module you are responding to. ALSO, don’t forget to press the ‘publish’ button on the right!

When you want to add a concept to the CONCEPTUAL TOOLBOX, follow the same instructions only select the CONCEPTUAL TOOLBOX category in the right side of the page!

When you eventually create your Conceptual Guidebooks these should be linked to the CONCEPTUAL GUIDE BOOKS category.