_Timothy Beatley, University of Virginia, USA

_Isabelle Boulangeat, Laboratoire Ecosystèmes et Sociétés en Montagne, INRAE Lyon-Grenoble, France

_Sophie Deramond, Chartier Dalix, Paris, France

_Stefania Manca, Resilience Manager, Genoa Municipality, Italy

_John M. Marzluff, University of Washington, Seattle, USA

_William Myers, Science Gallery Rotterdam, The Netherlands

_Cédric Pruski, ITIS Department, Luxembourg Institute of Science and Technology

_Marie Standl, Institute of Epidemiology, Helmholtz Munich, Germany

_Ciara Wolter, Energy & Renewable, Ambiente Italia, Italy


The project consortium comprises of six partners:
The Technical University of Munich, Vienna University of Technology, University of Genoa,
Technion – Israel Institute of Technology, Studio Animal Aided Design, McNeel Europe

• At the Technical University of Munich two faculties take part in ECOLOPES. The School of Life Sciences based in Weihenstephan, Freising, focuses on research and teaching in many aspects of life sciences, from molecules to plants and animals to ecosystems and landscapes. Within the School, the Department of Life Science Systems brings an ecosystem perspective to ECOLOPES. Within the School of Engineering and Design (in formation) the Department of Architecture focuses on design research to develop strategies for the transformation of our built environment.

• At Vienna University of Technology two faculties take part in Ecolopes. The Faculty of Architecture and Planning combines architecture and planning two fundamental subjects under the umbrella of one faculty and deals with the questions and challenges of the development and design of our environment. The Faculty of Informatics is one of Europe’s leading research, teaching, and innovation institutions in computer science and Austria’s largest faculty of its kind.

• Two Departments of the University of Genoa are taking part in the ECOLOPE project. The research team of the Architecture and Design Department (Polytechnic School) focuses on sustainable design and planning, nature-based solutions and LC-based assessment. The Department for the Earth, Environment and Life Sciences (School of Mathematical, Physical and Natural Sciences) works in the field of botany applied to architecture and environment focussing on the plant dynamics and response to abiotic and biotic stress in urban ecosystems, and nature-based solutions.

• The Technion – Israel Institute of Technology is Israel’s first university and its largest center of applied research. Technion is ranked among the leading technological universities worldwide.The Faculty of Architecture and Town Planning serves as a unique framework for the training of architects, landscape architects, regional and urban planners, industrial designers, as well as researchers in these fields. The faculty research team involved in the  ECOLOPES projects will  work on data driven design computation, simulation & analysis as well as the human response to the novel building envelopes.

Studio Animal-Aided Design is a start-up company resulting from research projects on the role of animals for the design of open green spaces. Our aim is to implement the Animal-Aided Design (AAD) method into international planning practice, to promote biodiversity and urban nature within urban development, landscape architecture and architectural projects. The central idea of the Animal-Aided Design (AAD) method is to integrally plan the occurrence of animals as part of the design of open spaces.

McNeel Europe in Barcelona is the European, Middle Eastern and African headquarters of Robert McNeel & Associates, a privately owned company owned by employees with many years of experience developing and supporting the architecture and design software Rhinoceros® . Rhinoceros provides a rich ecosystem of plugins and an open set of development tools (including free and open SDKs API) for design related software development in ECOLOPES.


Prof. Dr. Ferdinand Ludwig is Professor for Green Technologies in Landscape Architecture at Technical University of Munich since 2017. At the cutting edge of design, natural sciences and engineering his work centers on architectural concepts in which plants play a central role, thereby broadening architectural knowledge by confronting aspects of growth and decay, probability and chance in architectural and landscape design. He studied architecture and completed his doctorate studies at the University of Stuttgart where he founded the research group “Baubotanik” in 2007. He is partner in the office ludwig.schönle: Baubotanik – Architecture – Urbanism and has designed numerous projects, such as “Plane-Tree-Cube” in 2012, “Baubotanik Tower” in 2009, and “Baubotanik Footbridge” in 2005. In the ECOLOPS project he focuses  on the conceptual integration and the dissemination of the results.

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Dr. Anne Mimet is an interdisciplinary postdoctoral researcher in ecology and geography at the Terrestrial Ecology Research Group, Technical University of Munich. Her main research interests focus on how to describe the environment to understand and model the combined impacts of land use, landscape, and climate changes on biodiversity, and connectivity in anthropogenic landscapes oriented toward landscape planning. In ECOLOPES, she is in charge of the animal component and its interactions with the other biotic and abiotic components.

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Prof. Dr. Michael Schloter heading the Institute for Comparative Microbiome Analysis at the Helmholtz Center for Environmental Health in Munich and Professor for Microbiology at the Technical University of Munich. His main interests are interactions of environmental and human microbiomes and how shifts in the microbial diversity in nature affect human health. In the ECOLOPS project he focuses  on the assessment of microbiota in the different design settings, which are in the focus of the project.

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• Dr. Defne Sunguroglu Hensel is post-doctoral researcher at the department for Green Technologies in Landscape Architecture at Technical University of Munich . She is an architect and partner in the practice OCEAN Architecture|Environment, and coordinating manager of LamoLab Research Center. Her work focuses on green construction, data-driven design and knowledge-based decision support. In Ecolopes, she leads work-package 4, focused on the EIM Ontology to bring ecological intelligence into data-driven computational design.

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Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Weisser is head of the Terrestrial Ecology Research Group in the Department of Life Science Systems at the Technical University of Munich (TUM, Germany). He is a biologist interested in developing sustainable land use options. His group investigated the effect of land use on biodiversity, in particular how human land use changes species interactions. Most of the research focuses on insects, but also on other animals. Together with Thomas Hauck he developed the method Animal-Aided Design to integrate animals into landscape architectural designs. He coordinates ECOLOPES and is closely involved in modelling animal populations living on the ecolope.

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Univ. Prof. Dr. Michael U. Hensel is a practicing architect, head of the research department Digital Architecture and Planning and board member of the Center for Geometry and Computation (GCD) at Vienna University of Technology. He is a partner in the practices OCEAN Architecture | Environment and OCEAN net, and steering group member of the LamoLab Research Centre. In the ECOLOPES research project he leads work-package 5 with focus on the ECOLOPES Voxel Model & Computational Model.

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• Tina Selami has a Master of Science degree in Architecture from Vienna University of Technology (TU Vienna) and is currently a doctoral candidate and project assistant at the Department for Digital Architecture and Planning. Her main research interests are sustainable and climate resilient architecture and design, and environmental simulations and optimizations in architecture and urban planning. In her master thesis she developed the “Urban Green School” concept for a secondary school which combines greening measures of building and open space with environmental education. In addition to her work at TU Vienna she is part of the GREENPASS® project team as a simulation engineer. In the ECOLOPES project she works on the development of the computational model in work-package 5.


• Jakub Tyc is an architect, university assistant and doctoral candidate at the Department for Digital Architecture and Planning at Vienna University of Technology. He practiced in Austria and Germany, where he earned the architect license. His research focuses on the relations between architecture and photogrammetry in the context of data-driven design, investigating data-driven processes to evaluate relations between buildings, their surroundings and the environment. Building on his research on Composite Voxel Models, Jakub is working in work-package 5 on voxel-based interdisciplinary data integration.


• Prof. Dr. Michael Wimmer is currently Associate Professor at the Institute of Visual Computing and Human-Centered Technology at the Faculty of Informatics at Vienna University of Technology, where he heads the Rendering and Modelling Group. He also heads the Center for Computational Design and Geometry. His research interests are real-time rendering, computer games, real-time visualization of urban environments, point-based rendering, reconstruction of urban models, procedural modelling and shape modelling.

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Dr. Maria Canepa is adjunct professor and Postdoctoral Researcher Fellow at the Architecture and Design Department, University of Genoa (Italy). Main research interests: sustainable design and on Near Zero Energy Building, Building Information Modelling, strategies to address Climate Change and environmental assessed design. In the ECOPOLES project she helps leading work-package 7.

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• Dr. Alexandre Changenet is a post-doctoral researcher at the Department of Earth, Environment and Life Sciences, University of Genoa (Italy). His main research interests are the response of forests to global change, tree demography in response to biotic and abiotic stresses and the dynamics of invasive tree species. In the ECOLOPES project, he will work on the plant/vegetation component, defining plant functional groups and simulating their dynamics.

• Francesca Mosca has a master in architecture from the University of Genoa (Italy) and is currently a PhD student at the Department of Architecture and Design, University of Genoa (Italy). Her main research interests are integration of vegetation in architecture, strategies for adaptation and mitigation to climate change, and nature-based solutions and related effects on the improvement of environmental conditions and human comfort. In the ECOLOPES project, she will focus on the effect of the ecolope on human well-being assessing thermal comfort and on the building blocks analysis.

Prof. Dr. Katia Perini is assistant professor at the Architecture and Design Department, University of Genoa (Italy). Main research interests: effects and performances of nature-based solutions in the field of environmental and economic sustainability in (of) urban areas and building/urban design. In the ECOPOLES project she leads work-package 7 which will demonstrate the effectiveness of the ECOLOPES multispecies design and of the ECOLOPES design platform.

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• Marta Pianta is currently a PhD student at the Department of the Earth, Environment and Life Sciences, University of Genoa (Italy). Her main research interests are interactions of plants in the urban green spaces and the resulting ecosystem services, which represent a strategy to improve environmental quality in cities. In the ECOLOPES project, she will focus on the plant/vegetation component of building envelopes running simulations, and on testing in pilot site in Genoa.

• Prof. Dr. Enrica Roccotiello is assistant professor at the Department of Earth, Environment and Life Sciences, University of Genoa (Italy).  Her main research interests are plant response to abiotic and biotic stress in urban ecosystems, biodiversity of extreme habitats, and metal accumulation in plants. In the ECOLOPES project, she will be in charge of the plant/vegetation component and related interactions with abiotic and biotic components of ECOLOPES.

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Prof. Arch. Shany Barath is an Assistant Professor in the faculty of Architecture and Planning where she leads the D.DLAB[DISRUPT.DESIGN] research facility that develops design-led technological projects utilising both scientific and architectural innovation towards real-world impact. Merging academia and practice through her experience as the co-founder of Shaga Studio, an award-winning architectural computation practice, she is involved in multiple large scale commissions integrating Multi-Criteria Decision Making (MCDM) computational methodologies with analysis and simulation engines across evaluation fields for design search applications. She previously was a Studio Master and Program Head at the Architectural Association (AA) in London for almost a decade. In Ecolopes, she will lead work-package 6 with focus on  Computational Simulation and Analysis.

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Prof. Dr. Yasha (Jacob) Grobman is an architect and a researcher. He is the dean of the Faculty of Architecture and Town Planning at the Technion, IIT. His research concentrates on performance oriented architectural design and the use of computers for the design and manufacturing of architecture. Grobman holds a Master of Architecture from the Design Research Laboratory in the Architectural Association (AA) London and a PhD from the Technion Israel Institute of Technology. He has been a postdoctoral fellow in Harvard Graduate School of Design (GSD). Grobman is the author of more than 70 papers in academic and professional journals and co-author of book on Performalism released by Routledge press in 2011.

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• Surayyn Uthaya Selvan is a Master’s in Advanced Architecture graduate from the Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia and currently a PhD candidate at the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology researching the development of computational workflows utilizing dynamic ecological datasets for building envelope design strategies, contributing to work package 6 in the ECOLOPES project. Having developed his thesis on a simulation tool to integrate emotional analytics in the planning and design of dynamic urban environments, his research interests include investigating the integration of multi-disciplinary data in parametric data-driven processes.

Prof. Dr. Assaf Shwartz is Associate Professor at the Faculty of Architecture and Town Planning and the head of the Landscape Architecture Program. Prof. Shwartz is a socio-ecologist who specializes in theoretically-grounded applied research into how to promote environmental stewardship and human well-being. His research is therefore multi- or interdisciplinary and along his academic track he has acquired a breadth of different expertise in urban ecology, geography and planning, agroecology, environmental psychology and systematic conservation planning. The research he leads seeks to create novel knowledge and tools that can be applied towards alleviating the severe ecological crises our actions generate. Prof. Shwartz published more than 35 papers in leading peer-reviewed scientific journals, h > 18 (Google scholar). He was awarded several highly competitive research grants, including the ERC starting grant on optimizing the social and ecological outcomes of Nature-based Solutions in urban areas. Within Ecolopes project, Prof. Shwartz leads the human component exploring how people’s response to the novel building envelopes.

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• Dr. Thomas E. Hauck is a landscape architect. He founded the planning office Polinna Hauck Landscape+Urbanism with the urban planner Cordelia Polinna. As partner of Studio Animal-Aided Design he develops concepts for the transformation of planning towards co-habitation of humans and wildlife. Currently, he is research associate at the FG Freiraumplanung at the University of Kassel. In the ECOLOPES project he focuses on the design of plant communities according to biological and landscape architectural requirements and to model the dynamics of these novel communities.

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• Verena Vogler co-founded a research and development (R+D) department at McNeel Europe (2016) to participate in EU research projects that use Rhinoceros as a development platform for innovative technologies. As a doctoral candidate at the chair of Computer Science in Architecture at the Bauhaus-University Weimar, she develops a framework for artificial coral reef design combining nature-based design solutions, high precision underwater monitoring, and simulation. In ECOLOPES, she leads work-package 3, which focuses on the development and integration of the ECOLOPES platform architecture and the front-end tools in Rhinoceros.

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• Luis E. Fraguada is a co-founder of the R+D department and plugin developer at McNeel Europe/ Asuni CAD. In academia, Luis has taught internationally computational design, and has been an AEC technology expert at the Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia for over 10 years. In ECOLOPES, he focuses on the development of the front-end prototypes in Rhinoceros and Grasshopper.

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• Ayman Moghnieh is an innovation and technology commercialization consultant with a Master’s degree in Computer Engineering from Texas A&M University. He joined the McNeel Europe R+D department in 2017 where he manages and develops McNeel’s contributions in EU projects. His contribution includes identifying and analysing innovative technologies for their technical and market values, and building value-chains to facilitate their incubation and commercialization. Ayman is the ECOLOPES technical manager and is involved in the design and development of the system architecture, and exploitation strategies.

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egological building envelopes: a game-changing design approach for regenerative urban ecosystems