2013 Student Landscape Architecture

Design Competition Brief

2013 Student Landscape Architecture

Design Competition Winners


The brief for this year’s IFLA Student Design Competition evolved from two important threads. One was the theme chosen for IFLA 2013 World Congress: Shared Wisdom in an Age of Change. This immediately suggested a potent focus for the competition, an opportunity for students to demonstrate how shared wisdom could be utilised to transform landscapes. The second theme arose out of the post-earthquake situation in Christchurch, Canterbury. Through our research, and our work in communities, the School of Landscape Architecture at Lincoln University had developed an acute awareness of the opportunities for landscape architecture in post-disaster settings.

We became increasingly aware of the work done internationally on landscape architecture’s role in post-disaster settings, and realised that it would provide a fertile core for the competition brief. All manner of disasters were imagined as the inspiration for students to realise landscape architecture’s potency in recovery. On one hand natural disasters challenge the relationship between people and their environments around the world. Many recent natural disasters came to mind as possible topics for student design projects: earthquakes, flooding, tsunami, hurricanes and bush fires. Beyond these perhaps more tangible disasters were the tragedies taking place as a consequence of human action and inaction: urban sprawl, oil spills, diaspora, the global financial crisis, and terrorism.

The challenge was: How can landscape architecture assist in the redemption of landscapes afflicted by disaster? How can landscape architects assist with rebuilding, rehabilitation, restoration? What wisdom can be shared? Entrants were asked to focus on one site that has experienced significant impacts as a result of a major natural or cultural crisis. We also asked students to consider how changes would happen over time, as post-disaster recovery involves a number of phases, rather than a single static solution.

Organizing Committee
Competition Convenor: Dr Jacky Bowring, Associate Professor and Head of School of Landscape Architecture, Lincoln University, New Zealand


  • Mike Thomas, landscape architect with wide-ranging experience nationally and internationally, and representative of the sponsoring firm, Jasmax, Auckland, New Zealand
  • Neil Challenger, experienced landscape architect and educator, and representative of the hosting institution; immediate past chair of the NZILA Canterbury Westland Branch, Lincoln, New Zealand
  • Dr. Beverly Sandalack Landscape Architect, Professor and Associate Dean (Academic), and Director of the EVDS Urban Lab, University of Calgary, Canada; Chair of the Jury and Chair of the IFLA Competitions Committee