Michael Ulrich Hensel

Michael Ulrich Hensel
TU Wien | TU Wien · Department for Digital Architecture and Planning

Dipl. Ing. Grad Dip Des AA PhD
H2020 FET Open Ecolopes: https://www.ecolopes.org/

About

171
Publications
47,859
Reads
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976
Citations
Introduction
Michael U. Hensel is a founding member of the international network OCEAN and partner in OCEAN Architecture | Environment and OCEAN net. He is founding and steering committee member of LamoLab Research Centre, Tuscany, Italy. He is University Professor at Vienna University of Technology and heads the Research Department for Digital Architecture and Planning. He is also board and faculty member at the inter-faculty Center for Geometry and Computational Design.
Additional affiliations
March 2021 - July 2021
Politecnico di Milano
Position
  • Senior Residency
Description
  • Development of research collaborations and publication proposals.
May 2018 - present
TU Wien
Position
  • Faculty Member
March 2018 - present
TU Wien
Position
  • Professor
Description
  • Head of Digital Architecture and Planning
Education
August 2006 - June 2012
University of Reading
Field of study
  • Architecture
September 1992 - July 1993
September 1986 - June 1992
Technische Hochschule Köln
Field of study
  • Architecture

Publications

Publications (171)
Article
Full-text available
Recovery of land knowledge can help to advance the understanding of socio-ecological systems like traditional sustainable agricultural systems. Such efforts require transdisciplinary inquiry, data acquisition and analysis, as well as the development of data-integrated design processes for implementing recovered knowledge in the design of such syste...
Article
Full-text available
Rapid urbanization and related land cover and land use changes are primary causes of climate change, and of environmental and ecosystem degradation. Sustainability problems are becoming increasingly complex due to these developments. At the same time vast amounts of data on urbanization, construction and resulting environmental conditions are being...
Book
Full-text available
This book collects ground-breaking works on the actual and potential impact of big data and data-integrated design for resilient urban environments, including human- and ecology-centred perspectives. Comprehending and designing for urban social, demographic and environmental change is a complex task. Big data, data structuring, data analysis (i.e....
Chapter
The chapter sketches out a route for developing informed urban environments as an effective approach towards addressing complex sustainability problems especially for urban areas. The main thesis is that this can be initiated by linking the fields of sustainability science, urban science, and architectural science, based on shared inter- and transd...
Article
This paper questions the contemporary preferences for discrete architectures that clearly stand out against their setting and are therefore separated from their surrounding environment. Instead a different approach is pursued that aims for intensive architecture and environment integration. This approach is entitled embedded architectures and seeks...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Urban areas are facing significant challenges regarding degradation of environments and ecosystems, species loss, and increased vulnerability to climate hazards, all of which impact negatively upon human health and well-being.Focusing on building envelopes can offer an effective approach to the regeneration of urban ecosystems, by providing new spa...
Article
Full-text available
Understanding socio-ecological systems and the discovery, recovery and adaptation of land knowledge are key challenges for sustainable land use. The analysis of sustainable agricultural systems and practices, for instance, requires interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary research and coordinated data acquisition, data integration and analysis. Howe...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
In the architecture, engineering and construction industry (AEC) the transfer of knowledge and information through sharing, cooperation and collaboration serves to manage the inherent complexity of projects. Inter- and transdisciplinary teams including architects, engineers, consultants, contractors, suppliers and building owners, require shared de...
Preprint
Enhancing the sustainability of cities is a timely, complex task. It involves the challenge of identifying the concerns and goals of different stakeholders in an inclusive manner and bringing into dialogue the various forms of knowledge and know-how that can address these concerns. At the moment, the lack of suitable concepts and methods for taking...
Article
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This article seeks to initiate research into traditional rural hedging techniques, hedge types, and hedgerow networks for the purpose of their potential adaptation as urban green systems (UGS). The research involves three scales: (1) the plant scale and related manipulation techniques; (2) hedgerows and their context-specific types, ecosystem funct...
Article
In the context of climate change and accelerating urbanization, urban vegetation is more important than ever. With their size and biomass, trees are the most important elements for creating required and pleasant living conditions. However, the established techniques with which we plan tree planting and then implement and maintain them are often not...
Chapter
Full-text available
Gebäude gelten derzeit als umweltfreundlich, wenn sie der Natur möglichst wenig Schaden zufügen und einen möglichst kleinen ökologischen Fußabdruck hinterlassen. Gemessen wird dies meist an ihrem Energieverbrauch. Aus diesem Grunde wird die Interaktion des Gebäudes mit der Umwelt durch eine Maximierung der Dämmung und eine Minimierung der Außenfläc...
Article
Full-text available
In architecture, landscape architecture, and urban design, entangled multi-scale and multi-domain, or compound, sustainability problems and associated design requirements are becoming rapidly more demanding, complex, and interdisciplinary due to demographic, social, economic, environmental, and technological changes. This places considerable pressu...
Article
We present an interactive tool compatible with existing software (Rhino/Grasshopper) to design ring structures with a paradoxic mobility, which are self-collision-free over the complete motion cycle. Our computational approach allows non-expert users to create these invertible paradoxic loops with six rotational joints by providing several interact...
Book
Full-text available
The book - Activating Public Space - deals with the regeneration of the public realm from different points of view, with the main purpose of optimizing its social, functional, technological and energetic requirements. Under this premise, the text aims at identifying intervention strategies that, in addition to satisfying the basic needs for fruitiv...
Chapter
This chapter portrays an effort to pursue urban climate mitigation in a larger complex of compound sustainabili-ty problems. In this context we recognize that addressing compound sustainability problems and raising benchmarks within current approaches is limiting. What is key is a chan-ge in attitude, which requires a grounding ethic, a guiding per...
Chapter
Our take on questions of architecture and performance is rooted in a linked environmental and cultural ethic and endeavor: its aim is to improve on the relation between architecture and environment, while basing this approach wherever possible on locally specific cultural practices. As construction impacts upon our planet at a momentous rate, consu...
Chapter
This chapter portrays an approach and particular case of developing research culture in architecture across practice, research organization, and education that commenced in the mid-1990s in the context of the OCEAN, an interdisciplinary network that pursues research-by-design activities across the creative sector, and more specifically architecture...
Book
Climate change, urban population growth and resource shortages are the most crucial issues of our time. The global trend is rapid urban population growth, although this trend is decreasing in European countries. In this context, availability, distribution and the adequate management of resources are the fundamental issues that need to be addressed...
Chapter
Full-text available
The chapter portrays the work of the 2018 Lampedusa Studio at the Technical University on Munich.
Chapter
The notion of performance has been present in architecture for a while. This introduction briefly recounts some of the key contributions since the 1930s.
Article
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This article discusses a performance-oriented approach to architectural and urban design that seeks to intensify the interaction between architectures and their specific settings and environments. The overarching aim is to expand performance-oriented design in architecture to urban design and to integrate architectural, urban design and landscape d...
Article
Full-text available
The sixth Relating Systems Thinking and Design Symposium (RSD6 2017) was held at the Oslo School of Architecture and Design in Norway in October 2017. The central theme of the symposium was “Environment, Economy, Democracy: Flourishing Together”, and called for contributions on democratic participation and policy innovation, sustainable business in...
Book
The discipline of architecture if currently undergoing a significant change as professional practice and academia seem to be transforming one another specifically through succinct research undertakings. This book continues the discussion started in The Changing Shape of Practice – Integrating Research and Design in Architecture on architectural off...
Article
This article discusses endemic difficulties in addressing complex sustainability problems that arise from a lack of adequate, effective and inclusive provision for defining and securing human and non-human rights to ground in an integrative manner. This concerns the rapid decrease in available ground for ecological and human social purposes due to...
Article
Full-text available
Our research focuses on the question as to how architectural design can meet increasingly complex sustainability demands and support the natural physical and biological environment instead of degrading it. To try and meet this goal we undertake extensive analyses of historical case studies of architectures and constructions across a wide range of h...
Article
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The article discusses the need for ethical modes of conduct in utilizing technologies and data in architecture and argues against wholesale commodification of design.
Conference Paper
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This paper discusses an integrative approach to data-driven design with particular focus on advanced visualization and prototyping for the purpose of performance-analysis in the context of performance-oriented design. The work discussed in this paper has evolved over a period of two decades at the Oslo School of Architecture and Design and establis...
Conference Paper
Our approach to architecture focuses on the notion of performance. It ascribes the capacity of agency to nonhuman domains and elements. This approach focuses on the interrelation and interaction between four domains of agency: (1) the local physical environment, (2) the local biological environment, and, (3+4) the spatial and material organization...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
This paper is presented in the context of the theme of ‘Everyday Tectonics’. The objective is to show how building systems that are normally considered extraordinary can be transferred to the realm of broad application and therefore to the domain of everyday architecture. The authors indicate four criteria that must be satisfied to do so: [i] relev...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Auxiliary Architectures are built interventions that extend the capacity of regular architectures with the addition of semi-sheltered spaces for versatile use and for reducing climate impact on the existing architectures. Wherever they exist in historical precedents or in contemporary design such supplementary architectures are frequently lightweig...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
This paper seeks to identify and discuss alternatives to the prevailing and progressively global approach to architecture, urban design and regional planning, which is based on homogeneous figure-ground arrangements that consist of discrete architectures with all their known repercussions and restrictions imposed by the predominance of the architec...
Chapter
Full-text available
This paper is presented in the context of the theme of ‘Everyday Tectonics’. The objective is to show how building systems that are normally considered extraordinary can be transferred to the realm of broad application and therefore to the domain of everyday architecture. The authors indicate four criteria that must be satisfied to do so: [i] relev...
Chapter
Practices are always transforming due to changing needs, different conditions and circumstances to be met, emerging new design problems, new questions to be asked and new inquiries to be made. The underlying assumption in this book is that current changes are significant enough to warrant close attention. There are clear alterations in the ways arc...
Chapter
Full-text available
The chapter portrays the trajectory of organizational changes in OCEAN from its launch in 1994 to its current manifestation as OCEAN Design Research Association with particular respect to the relation of integrated research and design within OCEAN. The chapter includes the discussion of concept and method developments, sample projects and dissemina...
Book
Architectural practices worldwide have to deal with increasingly complex design requirements. How do practices acquire the ability to do so? The Changing Shape of Practice provides a handbook of examples for practices that wish to integrate more research into their work and a reference book for students that seek to prepare themselves for the chang...
Chapter
Full-text available
This chapter presents two essays by Michael Hensel, Achim Menges and Michael Weinstock. The essays highlight that the mathematical techniques for modelling the emergence of forms and behaviour from the complex systems of the natural world are juxtaposed with form-finding techniques for stable and dynamic material forms. Focus is placed on geometry,...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
This paper commences from the understanding that the built environment constitutes a vast repository of embedded knowledge and portrays an ongoing study of pre-industrial architectural case studies including buildings and settlement pattern so as to gain insights into their fine-tuned relation of their location specific performative capacities and...
Book
Providing a source of vision for the revitalisation of ground and envelope as spatial elements that can inform the search for embedded locally specific architectures, this book collects essays and projects that each contributes a particular element to what might constitute an integrated and richly nuanced approach to spatial organisation. Projects...
Article
Full-text available
Keywords:Joakim Hoen;Norway;Venice Architecture Biennale;Fundamentals;Elements;Rem Koolhaas;Charles-Louis de Secondat, Baron de Montesquieu, The Spirit of the Laws;Gottfried Semper;Kenneth Frampton;post-Second World War;Alan Colquhoun;Walter Gropius;Masters' Houses, Dessau, Germany;Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia (IAAC);Endesa Pavi...
Article
Full-text available
As architects compete on the world stage through the very diversity and disparateness of their expression, how might it be possible to develop an experimental approach that has value and credibility at a local level? Guest-Editors Michael Hensel and Christian Hermansen Cordua explore the possibilities for locally specific experimental architecture...
Article
Full-text available
Located in a studio just south of Mumbai in India; Studio Mumbai is closer to a traditional craft workshop than a conventional architects' office. With over 100 carpenters based on site, the studio is able to realize large-scale mock-ups, as well as models and graphic representations. As Guest-Editor Michael Hensel explains, craft and the collabora...
Article
Full-text available
Auxiliary architectures are a feature of many local building traditions across the world. Sited adjacent to existing structures, they are most often built as a means of tempering the climate, frequently offering additional shade in the summer months. Here Guest-Editor Michael Hensel proposes the development of auxiliary architectures as a solution...
Article
Full-text available
Located in Ritoque on central Chile's Pacific coast, Open City is a unique community established in the 1970s by faculty members from the nearby e[ad] school of architecture at the Pontifical Catholic University of Valparaíso. Here Professor David Jolly Monge, a founding member of the Open City, and Guest-Editors Christian Hermansen Cordua and Mich...
Article
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Catering for the needs of an impoverished rural community in Alabama through its design-and-build activities, Rural Studio leads the way internationally as a university-affiliated architecture programme with a social remit. Guest-Editor Michael Hensel describes how the initiative has grown and developed since it was first established over two decad...
Article
Full-text available
An initiative spearheadedby Michael Hensel; Christian Hermansen Cordua and Solveig Sandness at the Oslo School of Architecture and Design (AHO); the Scarcity and Creativity Studio (SCL) has been set up with the explicit intention of enabling students ‘to learn from integrated design, research and hands-on building activities’. Here Guest-Editors Mi...
Article
Guest-Editors Michael Hensel and Christian Hermansen Cordua reflect on four interrelated traits of current experimental practice that highlight the local: small size, locality, tectonics and experimentation/research. The objective is to provide an opening for further developments of the various trajectories of work that are featured in this issue,...
Article
Full-text available
This paper examines an experimental approach to intensely local architectures and to what everyday tectonics seen from this perspective might become. The discussion commences with approaching the notions of the local and of tectonics so as to re-question these with the aim to articulate a framework and agenda for progressing the approach to intense...
Article
Full-text available
This paper discusses research by design efforts in architectural education focused on defining and developing performance-oriented and intensely local architectures. The pursued notion of performance foregrounds the interaction between a given architecture and its local setting, with consequences not only for the design product but also the related...
Chapter
Performance-oriented architecture can benefit from a disciplinary affiliation with sustainability science in that human-environment systems are shared core interests. While variable material properties and behaviour present an important opportunity for performance-oriented architecture, a profound obstruction to their exploaitation exists in curren...
Chapter
Performance-oriented architecture is based on the understanding that architectures unfold their performative capacity by being embedded in nested orders of complexity and auxiliary to numerous conditions and processes: such architectures are essentially non-discrete. Nevertheless, some works begin to point in a direction that might be considered no...
Chapter
A useful inroad to the formulation of a non-anthropocentric architecture involves the integration of provisions for planned biodiversity that can help sustain an associated biodiversity and, in turn, sustain the freely evolving one. The involved conceptualisation, analysis, evaluation and incorporation of the understandings that arise from urban ec...
Chapter
The past decade has witnessed a gradual return of an explicit interest in the relation between architecture and performance. Today, there seem to be perhaps five different approaches towards performance in architecture. The first approach emerged from an interest in representation, symbolism and meaning in architecture. The second and third approac...
Chapter
The notion of performance emerged in the humanities and social sciences in the mid-20th century and, following this development, also in the arts and science in general. It took shape during the 1940s and 1950s with an intellectual movement known as the performative turn: a paradigm shift in the humanities and social sciences, with a focus on theor...
Chapter
The continual pursuit of an integrated theoretical framework for performance-oriented architecture necessitates re-questioning almost the entire scope of architectural practice, research and education. While this may be a daunting task, it is nevertheless a worthwhile one. Yet, while performance-oriented architecture might have begun to take shape,...
Article
Full-text available
This paper discusses research by design efforts in architectural education, focused on developing concepts and methods for the design of performance-oriented and intensely local architectures. The pursued notion of performance foregrounds the interaction between a given architecture and its local setting, with consequences not only for the design p...
Book
Architecture is on the brink. It is a discipline in crisis. Over the last two decades, architectural debate has diversified to the point of fragmentation and exhaustion. What is called for is an overarching argument or set of criteria on which to approach the design and construction of the built environment. Here, the internationally renowned archi...
Article
Full-text available
This article examines the development of the integrative and interdisciplinary approach to research by design in architecture pursued at the Research Centre for Architecture and Tectonics [RCAT]. RCAT constitutes the primary research environment of the Institute of Architecture at the Oslo School of Architecture and Design and focuses on an extensi...
Article
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The article portrays design and build projects in the Open City Ritoque, Chile and in Nusfjord, Lofoten, Norway, by the Scarcity and Creativity Studio at the Oslo School of Architecture and Design.
Article
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This article introduces and discusses a series of alternative and interrelated concepts and approaches regarding questions of the sustainability of the built environment and architectural design. The need for this discussion arises from the realization that the majority of current approaches to questions of sustainability in architectural design te...
Article
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Despite its extensive empire, Persia historically presented a challenging environment for the building of structures and infrastructure. The mountainous landscape of the Iranian plateaus has an arid or semi‐arid climate with distinct seasonal variations and temperatures that fluctuated throughout the day. Despite this, water management and soil‐fer...
Article
Full-text available
How is it possible to draw on inherited technical and cultural knowledge while being projective and anticipating an evolving future? Michael Hensel highlights the value of recognising essential Iranian sensibilities and identifying salient past traits that can be redeveloped into an enlightened contemporary approach. What sort of novel amalgamation...
Article
EditorIal 5 Helen Castle About the Guest Editors 6 Michael Hensel and Mehran Gharleghi Spotlight 8 Visual highlights of the issue Introduction 16 Iran: Past, Present and Future Michael Hensel and Mehran Gharleghi Towards an Architectural History of Performance: Auxiliarity, Performance and Provision in Historical Persian Architectures 26 Michael He...
Article
AbstractA surprising number of architects of Iranian origin, working outside of Iran, have come to international attention in recent years. Guest‐Editor Michael Hensel looks at the work of US‐based Hariri & Hariri and NADAAA&; and London‐located Farjadi Architects and studio INTEGRATE. Chosen for the variety of their approaches, Hensel attempts to...
Article
Full-text available
This article is based on the proposition that performance-oriented design is characterised by four domains of ‘active agency’: the human subject, the spatial and material organisation complex and the environment (Hensel, 2010). While these four domains are seen to be interdependent and interacting with one another, it is nevertheless necessary to e...