Scott Sutherland School of Architecture News, RGU Aberdeen Student Work, Campus, Development

Scott Sutherland School of Architecture

Robert Gordon University in Aberdeen – MArch course ; SSA Event, North East Scotland

26 May 2021

Scott Sutherland School of Architecture Non-Fungible Tokens – NFTs

RGU architecture students among first in the world to release their work as NFTs

Students from Robert Gordon University’s (RGU) Scott Sutherland School of Architecture and Built Environment will be among the first in the world to release their work as Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs).

The students, studying MSc Advanced Architectural Design, have been developing a series of forward-looking projects for the North East of Scotland and have now released their work on the NFT marketplace.

Castleton high tower design:
Castleton high tower Scott Sutherland School of Architecture: RGU

NFTs are unique digital objects which are housed on a blockchain, the technology behind cryptocurrencies. They are best described as a registration licence number for a particular unique object.

NFTs provide a platform for artists to break through previously inaccessible markets, or in this case, for architectural designers creating original designs.

NFTs are currently trending due to the sale of popular digital assets such as the first ever tweet by the founder of Twitter and the original image behind the 2005 Disaster Girl meme.

The students, inspired by the theme “automata”, have designed hyperloop and vertiport stations, high-rise towers and community centres in Aberdeen. These architectural designs address future challenges, with a particular focus on zero-carbon issues.

Theo Dounas, Learning Excellence Leader at the Scott Sutherland School of Architecture and Built Environment, commented: “Our work on the applications of blockchain technologies in architectural design expose the MSc AAD students to the cutting edge of digital tools that can be used for design and design management.

Hyperloop design:
Hyperloop Scott Sutherland School of Architecture design

“To connect our research into building information modelling and blockchain with our day to day teaching activities in the MSc Advanced Architectural Design, we set up a week-long, intensive workshop where the students were able to design and model their own designs on the blockchain.

“The students were excited about the workshop and working with blockchain technologies, as it allowed them to develop new business and operational models for architectural designers and their engagement with decentralized communities.”

The Scott Sutherland School has already built mechanisms to create NFTs for building components and use the blockchain as an information layer for a circular economy for the Architecture Engineering and Construction Industry.

Additionally, the School recently hosted the second research workshop in blockchain in construction along with the Construction Blockchain Consortium.

Previously on e-architect:

18 + 17 Dec 2017

Scott Sutherland School of Architecture Master of Architecture Unit 2 Work

Unit 2 Scott Sutherland “Home”

We present current work of Year 5 of my Unit 2 at Scott Sutherland “Home”.

Penny Lewis and Professor Alan Dunlop worked to change the MArch to a full two year, four semester course of study on a single project to allow greater time to do full research work which would benefit students doing their individual projects but be of such high quality that it could be published and accessed.

Year 5 Unit 2 December 2017 Exhibition Home

Year 5 are working on a project looking in depth at social housing, in the UK and International, and into precedent, procurement, developer interest, urban housing, best practice and so on. They will also produce a database which can be accessed beyond Scott Sutherland. The purpose of the study is to allow these young architects to be fully informed on a critical issue affecting architecture, practice and society. They have worked as a group so far but will begin on their individual projects next semester.

Scott Sutherland School of Architecture Master of Architecture Unit 2 Exhibition Publication Zine:
Scott Sutherland School of Architecture Master of Architecture Unit 2 Exhibition Publication Zine

Scott Sutherland School of Architecture Master of Architecture Unit 2 Exhibition Zine 2017

Their exhibition opened on Thursday and will go to The Lighthouse, Glasgow, shortly.

Their website which will develop further as the project itself continues:

Architects “are never taught the right thing” “Universities are failing to give architects the training that will enable them to find solutions for an imminent global housing crisis. Poverty, population growth, natural disasters and war are combining to create demand for more than a billion homes.” “But architects are unable to overcome the challenges posed by politics, economics and building codes to deliver viable solutions. It would be great, with more than one million architects in the world, that more solutions and more proposals try to address the issue”
2016 Pritzker laureate Alejandro Aravena.“

“I try to create homes, not houses.”
Louis Kahn

17 Dec 2016

Scott Sutherland School of Architecture Master of Architecture Unit 2

School: Architecture Informed by Education

The work of Alan Dunlop’s Master of Architecture Unit 2 in Scott Sutherland, informed by recent UK school issues: Oxgangs, PFI, PPP, the 17 Edinburgh school closures, BBC Investigates “How Safe is My School” and the recent about turn by Michael Gove, SFT and EDC:

The structure of the MArch course involves a two year period of in-depth study on a single project, which Alan thinks is relevant to a contemporary issue in architecture. Research, design and in depth study starting this year will focus on school design, worldwide.

So, for four semesters years 5 and 6 work on a single brief: School design, procurement, construction, Curriculum for Excellence, Scottish Futures Trust.

Semester 1 as a research unit.

Semester 2 focusing on individual design projects.

Semester 3 individual Projects then taken to an advanced level and high technical resolution.

Semester 4 in depth research work in a single topic of their choice.

To start, the unit undertook global research work on school design and gathered information and did a comparative study of the following in a range of countries identified by the students.

The educational policy (approach and teaching methods)
The procurement system (current and proposed)
The programme (school type, numbers, facilities)
The construction method

Semester 1 research work now to be published in three books: 01 Research and Analysis; 02 Precedent Studies; 03 Design Interventions and supported by an exhibition, web site and models. Books will be sent out to Scottish Government and others involved in procurement of school buildings, educationalists and teachers. Web site online early in New Year. Exhibition to RIAS, various schools, those involved in school procurement, councils and hopefully the RIBA.

18 May 2012

Scott Sutherland Big Crit

Scott Sutherland School of Architecture Event

Architects of the future present designs to the public in ‘Big Crit’ Public event bucks the trend of ‘unfashionable’ debates

Students at Robert Gordon University in Aberdeen will present their designs for review to high profile members of the architecture profession in a public event on Friday 18 May.

The Scott Sutherland School of Architecture and Built Environment is giving members of the public the unique opportunity to witness reviews of student design projects by a distinguished panel in it’s annual ‘Big Crit’ event. The day-long public discussion includes individual presentations and reviews of work from all year groups to learn lessons and influence future projects. To help reflect on the design proposals, the School invites a number of high profile architects and critics from industry to talk about the student work in the context of broader discussions about contemporary architecture and urbanism.

The panel this year includes renowned international architects Charlie Sutherland, Joe Morris and Pier Vittorio Aureli, as well as Scott Sutherland Visiting Professors Neil Gillespie OBE and Alan Dunlop. Deputy Editor of The Architects’ Journal and Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, Rory Olcayto, will also be on hand to offer his comments.

Neil Lamb, Senior Lecturer at the School, comments:
“A wide range of student work will be critiqued providing a great opportunity to see the review process in action, something which is normally done behind closed doors. The open discussion will also be an exciting event for those interested in the field.

“Over the past twenty years, public ‘crits’ have become unfashionable in architectural education as some feel that it is designed to flatter staff and undermine fragile students. Our ambition is to demonstrate that an open public debate is the ideal forum to help us understand the challenges of contemporary practice.”

The Crit will run from 9.30am – 4.30pm at the Scott Sutherland School, Garthdee, and members of the public are welcome to join the audience at any point during that time. After the Crit at 5pm the distinguished panel will give a 20 minute talk followed by an open discussion.

Scott Sutherland Lecture Series

Scott Sutherland School of Architecture Lecture Series 2011-12

Scott Sutherland School of Architecture Lecture Series 2011-12
image from SSSA

The 5710 Society at the Scott Sutherland School of Architecture are pleased to announce an exciting year ahead with a diverse range of guest speakers, ranging from well-established international names to some exciting young practices. Our lectures are open to members and the public, and held every Thursday at 5pm in our Main Lecture Hall, with a members drink reception afterwards – always a good opportunity to meet the architects informally.

While we are in the final stages of organising this year’s series, we are pleased to announce the majority of our timetable. Highlights include Duggan Morris Architects, Reiulf Ramstad Architects from Oslo, Peter St John of Caruso St John, Clancy Moore and O’Donnell & Tuomey from Dublin along with many top Scottish practices such as Reiach & Hall and Rural Design.

Annual membership is £20, or £4 a week at the door, and is open to all students and anybody wishing to attend from other universities or from the wider public are more than welcome. Membership also entitles the holder to our after lecture Cheese, Beer and Wine event held in our Main Hall.

Please see the full timetable for more information:

Semester 1

Sep 29th – 5710 Opening Party
Oct 6th – Tom Connolly of Elder and Cannon, Glasgow
Oct 13th – Reiulf Ramstad of RRA Architects, Oslo
Oct 20th – Mary Duggan and Joe Morris, Duggan Morris, London
Oct 27th – Oliver Chapman, Edinburgh (1pm Lunchtime Lecture) Holmes Architects, Glasgow (5pm Lecture)
Nov 10th – William Tunnel, Edinburgh
Nov 24th – Malcolm Fraser, Edinburgh
Dec 1st – Robin Webster of Cameron Webster, Glasgow
Dec 8th – Peter McLaughlin of John McAslan Architects, Edinburgh

Semester 2

Feb 9th – RMJM, Glasgow
Feb 16th – Jamie Fobert Architects, London
Feb 23rd – Boyd Cody Architects, Dublin
Mar 1st – Andrew Clancy of Clancy Moore, Dublin
Mar 8th – Neil Sutherland Architects, Inverness
Mar 15th – O’Donnell & Tuomey, Dublin
Mar 22nd – Neil Gillespie of Reiach and Hall, Edinburgh
Mar 29th – Dualchas, Skye
April 12th – Peter St John of Caruso St John, London
April 19th – David Henderson of Bennetts Associates, London
April 26th – Rural Design, Skye

We hope to announce a number of other speakers soon, please check our newly revamped website at for up to date information

Robert Gordon University – New Buildings

Started on site – Jul 2011

Design: BDP, architects

Combined Gray’s Art School / Scott Sutherland School of Architecture
Robert Gordon University Aberdeen building design by BDP
image from architect

Campus + 6 buildings incl. combined Scott Sutherland school of Architecture andGray’s School of Art

Robert Gordon University Garthdee Campus

Scott Sutherland Show

Scott Sutherland School of Architecture Show 2011

16 – 30 Jun

Drawing by Rowan Morrice ; Jenny Jarman:
Scott Sutherland student drawing Jenny Jarman drawing
images from SSSA

There have been considerable changes at Scott Sutherland in the last few years, as the school opens up more to the rest of the UK. The Big Crit initiative has been a great success and involved some of the country’s most respected architects and writers in their end of year review.

The Master of Architecture course has architecture and urban design units run by Professors Gokay Deveci, Neil Gillespie and Alan Dunlop. The drawings above are by students from Professor Alan Dunlop’s unit. The students in this unit are not allowed to use computers to develop their ideas and present their work. They must sketch, draw by hand and make models, quite a radical idea for a school of architecture in the 21st Century but it has resulted in some beautiful work and drawings and worth seeing.

Drawing by Scott Sutherland students of masterplan in east end of Glasgow:
Dalmarnock masterplan
image from SSSA

25 May 2011 Images from The Big Crit:

Big Crit Scott Sutherland Big Crit Scott Sutherland Big Crit Scott Sutherland
photos from SSSA

21 Mar 2011

Scott Sutherland School of Architecture Event

Big Crit event at the Scott Sutherland School of Architecture in Aberdeen

19 May 2011

The Big Crit is an annual event organised by staff and students from the Scott Sutherland School of Architecture and Built Environment in Aberdeen. It is a day long public discussion about the work of architecture students within the school, with individual presentations and reviews of work from all years and Masters units.

The aim is to draw general lessons about architectural design from an analysis of students work and a review of the schools studio briefs, with a number of high profile architects and critics reflecting on the proposals. At the end of the reviews, the critics and public are invited to reflect and comment about individual schemes and talk about the work in the context of broader discussions about contemporary architecture and urbanism.

Big Crit Scott Sutherland
poster from SSSA

The Big Crit event is a fantastic opportunity to see the work undertaken by students over the last year and explore some of the design, construction and social issues that the school embarks upon. There will be a social event in the Scott Sutherland School of Architecture and Built Environment and adjacent grounds after the critiques have finished.

The Big Crit event this year will take place in the school on Thursday 19th of May. This years guest critics are Peter St John, of Caruso St John, Annalie Riches from RHMA, William Mann from Witherford Watson Mann Architects, Ellis Woodman from Building Design, along with Masters Studio tutors Neil Gillespie from Reiach and Hall, and Alan Dunlop of Alan Dunlop Architects.


Scott Sutherland School RGU : Glasgow Group Degree Show 2008 Images

Scott Sutherland School of Architecture & Built Environment

Scott Sutherland School of Architecture & Built Environment 2007

14 Sep 2007

Appointment of Visiting Professor

The Scott Sutherland School of Architecture & Built Environment at the Robert Gordon University in Aberdeen is delighted to announce the appointment of a new Visiting Professor.

Alan Dunlop, a partner of Gordon Murray + Alan Dunlop Architects in Glasgow, was educated at the Mackintosh School in Glasgow. He brings a wealth of professional experience developed through a portfolio of challenging and dynamic designs across the UK, which have consistently won a number of high profile accolades.

More recently, the work of the practice has expanded into Europe. Alan has taught in a number of schools of architecture in the UK, and has been published widely, including two practice monographs: ‘Challenging Contextualism’ and ‘Curious Rationalism’.

‘It is a critical time for architecture in Scotland’, says Alan Dunlop. “Architects require a full range of technical, communication and artistic skill in order to fully engage. I also believe it is important that practitioners influence the development of the coming generation”.

Alan’s primary role will be to lead and direct a group of final year architecture students in their exploration of contemporary urban issues, building on the experience of his practice, and his personal passion for the city.

Professor Gokay Deveci said ‘I am delighted. This is good news for our students. Alan Dunlop works at the leading edge of practice and will make his professional experience and design skills accessible to us all’.

Professor G Deveci RIBA ARIAS
Scott Sutherland School, Garthdee Road, Aberdeen AB10 7QB

t +44 (0) 1224 263714 e

Alan Dunlop, Gordon Murray and Alan Dunlop Architects – 0141 331 2926

Location: Garthdee Road, Aberdeen, Scotland

17 Aug 2020
Architecture students design affordable housing for Grampian residents
Affordable houses for Grampian Housing Association
image courtesy of designers
Robert Gordon University Aberdeen

Grays School of Art:
Grays School of Art
photo © Adrian Welch

Robert Gordon University Aberdeen

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Website: Aberdeen