EventsInter­disciplinary ­Design

Inter­disciplinary ­Design

Werner Sobek

ILEK University Stuttgart

Event from
03 July
Photo by Werner Sobek



Today, when ever more complex buildings are being designed to satisfy ever more stringent demands, the question has to be asked, in which context and under which framework conditions is our built environment actually created. What role can and should architects – and engineers – play?

In the design phase of a building a number of iterative processes occur. Although sophisticated analytical methods can help in decision-making, geometric design, stability, joining of different materials or building energetics are not the only considerations. Design also involves lighting effects, colour and shade, surface finishes, micro and macro structures, tempe­rature control and much more. Not infrequently, unquantifiable or intangible factors play a role.

But how can all of these factors be integrated to form a complex whole that works? Knowledge of how art is created cannot be expressed in writing. However, learning and understanding can be fostered through constant practice. And it’s imperative that this practice begins in the universities. Only by learning the language of the “other” will interdisciplinary design become possible at all

Werner Sobek

Prof. Dr. Dr. E.h. Dr. h.c. Werner Sobek is an architect and consultant engineer. He heads the Institute for Lightweight Structures and Conceptual Design (ILEK) at the University of Stuttgart. From 2008 to 2014 he was Mies van der Rohe Professor at the Illinois Institute ­of Technology in Chicago. Werner Sobek is also visiting professor at numerous universities at home in Germany and abroad. He is the founder of the Werner Sobek Group, a worldwide alliance of planning offices for architecture, structural design, façade planning, sus­tainability consulting and design.


Bangkok Airport
Bangkok Airport
Rothenbaum Stadion Foto: Werner Sobek Stuttgart
Rothenbaum Stadion
Station; Photo: Zooey Braun