Design and design research matter in new ways today. If rapidly changing climates, energy flows, material economies, and migratory populations are the emerging challenges of our time, then the design disciplines offer unique insight on how to navigate these complex, open-ended conditions.

Distinct from research in the sciences or humanities, design research involves highly interactive ways of thinking and learning through hands-on, cross-disciplinary, multimedia practices that directly engage the technical, material, spatial, ecological, political, and economic dimensions of design. Seeking to empower the next generation of designers and urbanists, the MDes program utilizes a set of novel methodologies in a collaborative and immersive environment. Ultimately, MDes challenges conventional ways of learning—through field work, fabrication, collaboration, and dissemination—in a range of labs, seminars, workshops, initiatives, publications, and ongoing projects whose scope and diversity are unmatched.

K. Michael Hays
Eliot Noyes Professor of Architectural Theory Director, Master in Design Studies