With EMiLA, five of the leading landscape architecture universities and schools with a focus on Design in Europe established the first “European Masters in Landscape Architecture.”
This is an urgent issue in an era which has created a European perspective on landscape with the European Landscape Convention, brought forward by the Council of Europe in 2000. There is a specific need for such a Masters because there is a lack of landscape architects dealing with the understanding of our cultural landscape differences in Europe. In major international competitions only few European candidates can address major territorial issues. There are too many topics where there are no landscape architects at all working in multi-disciplinary teams on major landscape transformations such as highway constructions through Europe, anticipating river flooding on major European transnational rivers or coastal continuity. Our European landscapes do not stop at national borders even if the national and historical policies have been very important in each nation.
The objective is also to make students and professional practitioners more aware of the links between the EU policies and the territorial scale of management as well as of the possible role of landscape design. The EU policies are adapted to each culture and geographical region, which makes the potential interpretations a source of new concepts.
In EMiLA, students will be educated to work on large-scale European landscape questions linked to the fast transformation brought about by changes in resource management as for instead:
- How should we build our European energy-system without erasing our historical cultural landscapes?
- What type of agrarian landscape and suburban agrarian landscapes should we have surrounding our major European cities?
- How can we manage flood risk of European rivers through landscaping?
- What will our European landscapes be used for in the face of a shrinking and aging population?
Moreover, we hope that EMiLA will offer its students the possibility to create a strong and intensive network between students and teachers from the differents EU schools/universities as well as from other international landscape architects that have a link with EMiLA.
EMiLA was founded to:
- Be a hub for students, academics, researchers, stakeholders, the EU and regional policy makers to develop new curricula; and to allow knowledge exchange on human settlements and contemporary landscapes through a Design Process.
- Identify and develop key EU landscape topics that are not currently clearly addressed in Higher Education, such as the impact of the new EU Common Agricultural Policy on landscape, as well as across-the-board Landscape topics. There will also be comparative reflections on scale, time and knowledge in territorial transformations.
- Have a learner-centred approach and a strong teacher-student relationship, as a students’ and academics’ Masters programme which promotes mobility.
- Be sustainable and grow. Once consolidated, EMiLA will invite new schools to join the network.