INRTU Launches Winter Urban Planning University Themed 'Irkutsk - the Intellectual Capital of Siberia' on February 28

On February 28 the 25th session of the International Baikal Winter Urban Planning University will be opened at the INRTU Technopark. Students and young specialists from five countries will develop projects on the ‘Irkutsk - the Intellectual Capital of Siberia’ theme.

The anniversary session was preceded by a workshop held at INRTU in June. Participants discussed possible thematic concepts.

The winter session is headed by INRTU member Ivan Khomutinnikov. About 30 students, architects and urban planners from Russia, Vietnam, China, Ecuador and the Republic of Belarus will participate in the Baikal Winter Urban Planning University. Russia is represented by guests from Moscow, St. Petersburg, Sergiev Posad, Ufa, Ekaterinburg, Chelyabinsk, Novosibirsk, Krasnoyarsk and Irkutsk. Among them are nine INRTU students.

The project teams have to work in five areas. For example, a group of researchers led by INRTU Associate Professor Alexei Levashev will work on Smart City Technologies. The team led by Professor Vasily Kozlov will consider the role of universities, research institutes, and other science-intensive organizations in the development of Irkutsk and the agglomeration.

In addition, the participants of the winter session will propose ideas for the creation of an inter-university campus in Irkutsk. The work of the authors will be supervised by the former chief architect of Irkutsk Sergey Alexandrov.

The session will address issues of sustainable development of the urban environment - the main customer for innovations. One of the teams will focus on public urban spaces as forms of interdisciplinary communication.

The designers will spend most of their time at the University Technopark. An excursion to the Future Point educational complex is planned for the beginning of March.

The on-site block will be preceded by an online lecture program (February 19-21). On the first day, participants will meet Larisa Bogdanova, a lecturer at the Russian Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, and Ivan Fominykh, head of the Sustainable Cities Laboratory. They will talk about how a person's environment shapes his or her worldview and what should be done to influence the transformation of the city. On Wednesday, February 21, Barbara Engel, Head of the Department of International Urban Planning at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, will speak about the challenges and perspectives of cities of the future.     

The opening ceremony of the Winter Urban Planning University will take place on February 28 at 13:00 at the INRTU Technopark. The winners will be announced on March 13.


The workshop originated from the participation of INRTU students in the Summer Urban Planning Seminar in Paris. Based on the French experience, INRTU organized the first urban planning workshop in Irkutsk in 1999. The Russian workshop is different from the European one. The uniqueness of the INRTU methodology is the involvement of the Urban Planning University in the educational process. From 20 to 130 diploma projects have been completed for each topic of the sessions.

Over the years, more than a thousand students and young specialists from more than 40 countries have participated in the Winter Workshop.