Architecture and the Environment

Architecture and Environmental Studies are natural companions.  It is impossible to design good buildings without understanding their relationship to natural systems.  It is also impossible to understand the natural environment without knowing how human intervention affects it – both positively and negatively.  As man and nature begin to recognize their interdependence, the study of environment takes on a whole new meaning.  Architecture and the Environment encourages students to explore these relationships from a variety of perspectives.

<p>Self-Reliance  <em>photo by Erik Fendik '13</em></p>Middlebury 2011 Solar Decathlon "Self Reliance" home during the first year anniversary celebrations. Photo by Erik Fendik '12.5.

Study Abroad for Architecture and the Environment

The United States lags behind most other developed countries in its commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and slow the effects of climate change.  This is more than a problem for environmental scientists – everyone must participate in restoring harmony and balance to the fragile ecosystems that make our planet habitable.  In order to affect change at home, it is important for students pursuing the Architecture and the Environment joint-major take the time to see how communities and cultures all over the world are employing strategies for sustainability.  In recent years, our students have attended the Danish International Studies Program in Copenhagen, the Ecole spéciale d’architecture in Paris, France, and the Facoltà di Architettura at the Università di Ferrara, Italy.