Tongji University launches RIA’s exchange programme and research stays

15 January 2024

RIA started 2024 by hosting a group of architecture students from Tongji University in Shanghai, sharing learnings around heritage, local identity, community engagement and urban regeneration.

This visit took place within the framework of the public programme of educational and research activities promoted by Fundación RIA, which will be enhanced with the upcoming opening of Casa RIA and which aims to share learnings and experiences that promote the exchange of knowledge with universities, research centres and other academic institutions.

The collaboration between RIA and the Tongji University of Shanghai made it possible to hold the final review of the Option IV Studio in the city of Santiago de Compostela, which was complemented by a series of activities and visits that enabled students to learn about different projects of the foundation, its working methodology and to better understand the complexity of the Galician productive landscape.

The final review was held on 19 January at the Galician Centre of Contemporary Art, designed by the architect Álvaro Siza, with the participation of an international jury that enriched the following discussion. In addition to the studio professors, the session was attended by David Chipperfield, president of Fundación RIA and linked to the course as guest professor; Iago Lestegás, Urban Planning Councillor of Santiago de Compostela; Lyndon Neri, founding partner of the architecture practice Neri&Hu; as well as the RIA team.

The exercises showcased are the result of the semester’s work and intervene at various scales in a former Chinese ceramics industrial complex in Jingdezhen, which fell into disuse after China’s economic reform in the 1990s. The studio spent the semester investigating how to reimagine two factories in this complex and its urban development at the intersection of historical heritage, community and economic activity.

The programme of activities designed by Fundación RIA deepened in these aspects: from approaching the complexity of the territory of the Ría de Arousa to understand the interactions of a productive landscape with the infrastructures and the urban environment;  visiting the Ribeira fish market and the Santiago Food Market to get to know its products first hand; discovering the process of urban transformation and mobility in Pontevedra; to walking along the waterfront of the coastal town of Palmeira, the Lourizán forestry complex or the roofs of the Cathedral of Santiago, among others.

RIA promotes a range of educational and research programmes to foster the exchange of knowledge, offering its own research with contributions from local representatives, practitioners and academics through conferences, working sessions, interviews and visits.

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La Tongji University inicia el programa de intercambios y estancias investigadoras de RIA