ETH Master of Science in Landscape Architecture

WELCOME! We offer a new two-year master’s program in Landscape Architecture at the Department of Architecture of ETH Zurich with a focus on the design and planning of open spaces and landscapes. Initiated by Prof. Teresa Galí-Izard, Prof. Christophe Girot and Prof. Günther Vogt at the Institute of Landscape and Urban Studies (LUS), it is the only such program in Switzerland. The study program begins on Sept. 14, 2020.

Entry Autumn Semester 2021 | Applications open from 15 Nov. – 15 Dec. 2020 (international application period), is compulsory for all students who require a visa. This first deadline is also open to all applicants.

Mission Statement

The Masters of Science degree in landscape architecture will redefine the goals and boundaries of landscape architecture as a design discipline, through the development of new tools and methods that will vary according to project location, scale and time.  The challenges of the 21st century call for a new kind of interdisciplinary design intelligence. Design is a medium for change, and in the case of landscape architecture, it will engage in highly experimental and prospective approaches that will blend science with culture, and knowledge of the living world with technology. The Department of Architecture at the ETH in Zurich provides a unique framework to reflect on the built environment as it is adapting to a rapidly changing planet. Design taught in this programme will, therefore, address civil society and will strive to encourage better and more stable landscape conditions for an engaged and just society.

The Master of Science ETH in Landscape Architecture (MScLA) at ETH is a programme strongly based on design and studio culture. It will prepare a generation of 21st century landscape architects that are able to respond to increasingly complex societal and environmental situations. This will be achieved through careful analytical observations, on-site explorations, design experimentations and technical synthesis. The program will propose a methodological framework that will address strong cultural and ethical questions. It will encourage creative imagination and design excellence, enabling students to imagine robust and innovative design solutions at a variety of scales.

Fundamental knowledge deeply grounded in the history and theory of the discipline, will be rigorously examined in order to reconsider future developments in a different way. Advanced digital methods of design will be taught giving students an unprecedented set of tools to enable, conceive, model and represent a project. The programme will also include interdisciplinary collaborations with architects and engineers, with the humanities and science to develop hybrid projects capable of responding to pressing environmental questions in terms social equity, ethics, and regenerative ecology.

Set at the heart of technical innovation and scientific research at the ETH, this programme is uniquely positioned to develop a variety of landscape design methods in collaboration with scientists, architects and engineers. Students will be encouraged to acquire both strong disciplinary knowledge in the field of landscape architecture, as well as intensive interdisciplinary exchange and experimentation.

Both disciplinary and interdisciplinary knowledges combined will enable the development of stronger innovative methods in planning and design. The Master programme will address environments at various scales in a variety of different cultural and geographic situations.  There will be a mix of analog, digital, GIS and rule-based approaches to planning and design.

The Master of Science in Landscape Architecture will seek to foster greater design complexity and intelligence in the built environment. It will be taught by an internationally recognized team of experts in the field. Questions of diversity, like the role and place of nature in our cities and in our lives, will be central to this programme. It will be a place where conventional ideas can be discussed, questioned and when necessary, replaced knowingly.  Our world requires a mix of open-ended strategies, as well a finely crafted design solutions. The programme will encourage the integration of previously excluded actors, and will learn to better follow the logics of plants and other living things. Discussion about cultural complexity, diversity and ecological contradictions will be encouraged. It will foster a design philosophy specific to our place and time, one that is in tune with the acute cultural and environmental sensitivities that are at play. Graduates from this programme will be better equipped to design productive, aesthetically pleasing landscapes capable of fostering new dynamic relationships between society and a rapidly changing environment.

Latest News

  • Sep072020

    BEING TREE: Seminar Week

    “The whole history of biological evolution is in the life of a tree.”
    -Francis Hallé, La Vie des Arbres

    Read more
  • Jul232020

    Design as an Answer to Value and Ethics Interview

    Prof. Teresa Gali-Izard shares her vision for the future of the profession

    Read more
  • Jul052020

    Lost in Paradise, A Journey Through the Persian Landscape

    Issue 24 of the publication series ‘Pamphlet’ offers different interpretations of the walled garden and aims to reconcile contemporary events with the enigmatic notion of paradise.

    Read more