Social and Collaborative Housing
Politecnico di Milano I and II level Specializing Master
V Edition
November 7, 2016

The program’s learning structure benefits from its interdisciplinary nature, the integration of theory and practice, and its design approach.  These features translate in to a sequence of lectures, specialist workshops, and a project developed throughout the course. Students are called upon to work in groups by integrating their diverse skills to develop the design activities they have been assigned.  Following this process enables them to consolidate an overall, interdisciplinary vision of the issues dealt with.

The Specializing Master offers a line of work consistent with the development of a real housing project, whose steps involve the relationship with other disciplines, translated into training modules organized in line with the system of university credits (CFU standard).
These modules can be grouped into three broad subject areas:
  • Architecture and design
  • Management and Finance
  • social studies
The workshops create the occasion for students, under expert guidance, to apply the methods and tools learned during their theoretical lessons to designs and to real cases.  They undertake specific tasks, such as:
  • community building 
  • settlement planning
  • analyzing economic feasibility.
The workshops, integrated with some theoretical contributions, also constitute the core of the following specific training modules:
  • The definition of policies and projects for living
  • The architectural and urban design
  • Strategic planning, services and community
  • The financial planning
These modules can be also open to punctual partecipation of  professionals not enrolled the entire path of the Specializing Master.
The first part of the Specializing Master is devoted to basic theory.  It is designed to consolidate students’ preparedness to complete the entire course of study.  This segment deals with general issues in social and collaborative housing by analyzing international best practices and its historical, theoretical, and cultural features.
The middle segment of the program is made up of diversified activities:
  • Features of strategic design, service design, and building and managing communities are dealt with during the first workshop and dedicated lessons in theory.
  • The second workshop is an intensive design laboratory that tackles and integrates the diverse issues involved in housing design: the city setting, architectural planning, the job site and construction, residential and neighborhood services, building and managing the community, and financial planning.
  • Aspects related to the definition of policies and projects for living and social planning and Economic and financial planning and feasibility are treated transversally during the first workshop and the intensive second workshop, as well as in specific lessons devoted to theory.
Following the two workshops, on the basis of their content, design results will be tested precisely in order to ensure real feasibility conditions and conformity to the actual architectural design.  Prior to the final internship an exercise will also be held to assess overall learning development and capacity for critical application of learning outcome.  The exercise, coordinated by the subscribers to the second level path, is to culminate in an event for presenting results to the public and to representatives of the industry.
Target Audience
The Specializing Master is designed to provide systemic organization for the knowledge of specialists in various separate components of social and collaborative housing initiatives.  Previous expertise may be in city planning or architecture, design or construction, running cooperatives, finance or savings management, public policy, real estate or social work.  The program thus offers innovative, specialist training both for those already active in social and collaborative housing and for graduates in architecture, design, business and finance, or the social sciences.
  • Architects and designers working for planning firms, engineering companies, cooperatives, building contractors or the public sector may wish to round out their skills with specialist knowledge of the social, management, and financial aspects of social and collaborative housing.
  • Executives may wish to cultivate skills tailored to working for organizations in the social and collaborative housing industry (residential cooperatives, construction companies, credit unions, etc.).
  • Contractors and real estate agents may feel the need to supplement their business skills with specific training in the complex issues of social housing.
  • Experts in public policy and social work come into this field through foundations, service enterprise in the housing industry, and nonprofit organizations.

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Social and Collaborative Housing


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