The International Fellowship Program offered jointly by INI Design Studio and Institute of Architecture & Planning, Nirma University (IAPNU) aspires to provide a comprehensive experience of research and practice in the emerging market economies. The program offers a full (16 weeks) or partial (8 weeks) semester in Ahmedabad, India that will have an in-depth research-based studio and a mainstream practice experience. Conducted with a learning by doing approach, the student at the end of the program shall have a thorough understanding of the issues, design process and deliverables in a fast-growing economy like India. This collaborative programme offered jointly by a university and an established multi-disciplinary design firm shall mainstream practice orientation and also help develop industry-academia linkages.
While we were working on the projects in India, we were struck by the vitality and potential that we saw wherever we travelled.
The programme shall be offered in two modules-research-based studio and practice experience.Each module will be of 8 weeks duration.The student will have the option of attending either one of two modules through a partial semester or both modules through the full semester.Those attending both shall be entitled to equivalent credits.The modules will be linked with each other to provide a holistic experience and understanding of the theme and its application in real world.
In this, the student shall engage into a research based field experience in various cities and other interesting sites in India. The studio shall focus on real-world problems and situations. The focus of the studio exercise shall be on field-based inquiry, analysis and documentation. The module shall delve deep into problem solving, guiding the student such that they acquire a thorough understanding of the interface between research and practice.
The practical training shall provide the student a first-hand experience of design process,application of theoretical concepts in practice,project management and the interface between people and design in an emerging economy.In this module the student shall work on the real design projects with the professional teams at INI Design Studio and gain an exhaustive understanding of design and delivery process.
The programme approach shall combine explorations and travel with studio-based learnings and field-based research. As the students engage themselves into understanding the real design problems and their interface with the social, physical and environmental parameters, they shall also explore the local culture including lifestyle, built forms, food and festivals. The comprehensive learning approach will enable students to experience the diversity that a country like India offers. The studio exercises, as also the practical training, shall be field-based providing opportunity to travel and explore indigenous locations. The programme shall also have guest lectures by the experts in the field. Being collaborative in nature, the programme shall provide various opportunities of interaction with eminent academicians, practitioners and also experts from the corporate and the government.
The city of Ahmedabad offers a diverse experience of life in india-from the upcoming urban infrastructure to the 600 year old Walled City of Ahmedabad,that is now declared as india's first World Heritage City.The city has held an important historical footing in india's freedom movement.Home to the Sabarmati Ashram,from where Mahatma Gandhi launched the freedom movement,the city is adorned with various historical sites and monuments such as Sidi Saiyyid ki jaali and jhulta Minaara.The city also presents an architectural delight housing structures designed by Louis Kahn and Le Corbusier.While being an institutional hub,the city is also known for its night markets,crafts and the culture and traditions.
There are many pluses to life in Ahmedabad.The cost of living is low and getting around is easier.Though smaller than Delhi or Mumbai,Ahmedabad offers a cosmopolitan feel while being safe and secure at the same time.people here don't hesitate to stop and help you.
In the global world, international experience brings diverse perspective and deeper understanding of the real-world issues. As more and more student venture out of their comfort zone to experience life outside the boundaries to understand how design issues and their solutions vary among countries and cultures, the emerging economies offer great diversity of experiences. The rapid development of social, economic and built sectors in these countries make them dynamic and typically challenging. Working in a fast-growing developing country provides an opportunity to develop and enhance leadership skills, understand different aspects of design and built environment and learn how to handle diversity of cultures. Living in an area where density is high and resources are limited, one experiences a dynamic play of resource allocation and infrastructure development, adding a third dimension to the broad understanding of design and development. In nutshell, the developing country experience opens up the mind to see how other cultures live, providing a different perspective towards the discipline.
The accommodation for the students shall be facilitated by the program organizers. Upon admission, the students shall receive the options for accommodation, the monthly rental and details of the other living logistics. The students shall be guided into finding suitable furnished apartments within 5-7 miles of both the organisations. Uber and Ola cab services are easily available in Ahmedabad and at fairly reasonable on the budget. A few of those who wish to take a step further out of their comfort zone also buy or rent motorized two-wheelers or bicycles to move around the city.