The Architect’s Profession


One of the most ancient and, at the same time, up-to-date professions.
Find out what an Architect does and how to become one.


The field of Architecture and Urban Design are among the most ancient and, at the same time, up-to-date professions. They have, in fact, evolved over time without however losing their original vocation.

Architecture is a field which bridges technological and artistic practices and which integrates the imaginative and skillful manipulation of form, as well as the ability to draw inspiration from a broad body of knowledge. Architecture is the art and science of transforming and shaping reality. Determined by its history and its culture, it is a material, circumstantial and cultural contribution to the changes in the world.  In our current era, in which we are faced with new challenges and opportunities, the professions of Architecture and Design are adapting in order to face these cultural and technological shifts. Our age is one of complexity and uncertainty, one that questions the very definition of architecture – from the building to collectivity, from public space to territory.  Architectural Education must react to these changes which are taking place in the professional environment, and in fact, should precede these changes with focused studies and a strategic curriculum that anticipates tomorrows opportunities and challenges today.

He or she imagines, designs and guides the construction process of buildings of various types., and in reality, he or she shapes our shared planetary future of living together in shelters and cities.

What is the future of the city? What are the spaces of tomorrow? What tools do we need to design for the present? These are questions that call on architectural studies as a space for investigating, understanding and sharing today’s and tomorrow’s reality. Currently, the new generation of Architects and Designers are increasing their field of action, proposing ideological projects that help respond to social, cultural and ecological vulnerabilities and conflicts. They are investigating strategies, which are becoming more inclusive, embracing people from a wide variety of backgrounds.

What are the appropriate studies to prepare today’s student for the professional field of tomorrow?

Computer skills are fundamental for an architect. In particular, the architect must know how to use 2D and 3D drawing software, BIM and computational modeling tools as well as timeless and traditional drawing techniques and skills.

As the current professional practice has gotten increasingly complex, educational curricula must adapt in turn, introducing students to artistic practices, high tech research, and including philosophers, sociologists, political scientists, geographers, and biologists in the academic offering.

The Domus Academy’s architecture curriculum includes design studio, theory, visual studies, history, technology, and professional practice, with design as the central focus of instruction.

The architect combines a solid set of technical competences with some indispensable soft skills. First and foremost is the ability to communicate with different people: colleagues, collaborators, suppliers, public institutions and – of course – clients.

It is often not only a matter of dialogue but also of negotiation, to find a point of reconciliation between subjects who have different, if not even divergent, interests and needs. Another fundamental factor is an aptitude for creative and future forward problem solving. Working on the design (and construction) of a building means constantly facing problems of various kinds (technical, design, time, cost, etc.), but also, a matured knowledge of the complexities of the contemporary cultural contexts in which Architects and Designers practice.

Symbol of stability and permanence, the art of building must now deal with an unpredictable future. If the twentieth century was the century of prediction, the twenty-first will be the century of indeterminacy.

The architect can work as an employee in various types of organisations: a professional practice, a corporate firm or a construction company. Usually, the architect only deals with one stage of the project in the first few years, to then broaden their scope, after gaining more confidence. He/she thus comes to take care of the entire process and manage increasingly important projects, even on an international level.

Alternatively, he/she may join a public organisation (e.g. a municipality). In this case, remuneration is linked to the level reached in the organisational chart.

The Master’s programme in Urban Vision & Architectural Design at Domus Academy offers a multi-disciplinary setting for the exchange of ideas across the fields of architecture, landscape architecture, urban planning, urban design, real estate, and environmental design studies — with an approach that allow for visionary responses to the real world needs and aspirations that are facing culture, society and the environment today.

The Master’s programme in Urban Vision & Architectural Design is aimed at graduates and/or professionals from the fields of architecture, urban planning, landscape design, or equivalent fields. Candidates with a degree or diploma from different disciplines, who are interested in conducting in-depth research in the thematic areas of the programme and in developing a relevant portfolio, may also participate.

There are two types of Master in Urban Vision & Architectural Design. The Academic Master (60 ECTS credits) is developed over 5 modules, a curricular internship and a final project workshop and it allows to gain an Academic Master’s Degree accredited by the Ministry of University and Research (MUR), a qualification recognised in Europe and worldwide, as well as a Domus Academy Master Diploma. With the Double Award Master (90 ECTS credits), students have the opportunity to integrate the course of study consisting of 5 modules, a curricular internship and final project workshop, with additional lessons and a more in-depth individual project thesis. With the Double Award Master, students can obtain an Academic Master recognized by the MUR and, in addition, a Master of Arts officially recognized by the British system (Privy Council) and issued by Regent’s University London.

The Master in Urban Vision & Architectural Design covers the theoretical courses in Urban Representation, Architectural Representation, Design Formation, as well as the Professional Accelerator Activities and the workshops in Urban, Landscape Design and Architectural Design. Moreover, students have to attend an elective workshop to be chosen among Identity Design, Design of Spaces and Envisioning.

Domus Academy’s Master in Urban Vision & Architectural Design allows students to develop their creative and critical skills in the field of architectural design. Through the analysis of landscape, urban and rural contexts as a starting point for the study of society, students learn design strategies in the investigation of different architectural approaches. Moreover, they develop strategies and solutions that respond to the needs of citizens and their culture, commerce, relationships and mobility up to the elaboration of the landscape, urban, rural and architectural design final proposals.

Domus Academy’s Master in Urban Vision & Architectural Design trains architects, landscape architects and urban designers of the future, with career tracks in design, architecture and engineering firms, local development agencies, urban planning departments or real estate companies.

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