What is JAS?

JAS - Jugend Architektur Stadt (YOUTH ARCHITECTURE CITY) is a non-profit association that promotes built environment education and participation of children and young people. Since 2005 JAS helps children and the youth with knowledge and tools to see, to explore and to discover Design, Architecture, Cities and Landscapes - the built environment - with all their senses and as a context of learning. Goals are:

-> to raise the children’s awareness of responsibilities and to foster their creativity in the creation of the built environment,

-> and to help children and young people to form today and in the future a stronger and more reflective voice when it comes to formulate their spatial needs.

JAS conceives and realizes workshops and projects for and with children and young people in cooperation with different partners, such as private initiatives, schools, municipalities, universities and other institutions. Beside workshops on built environment education JAS develops teaching material for schools, liaises between experts and users in planning and building processes, organizes advanced training programs for teachers and offers consultation on participatory design and built-environment education topics. JAS also understands itself as forum for activities in the field of built-environment education.

Who is JAS?

JAS was founded as an interdisciplinary initiative in 2005 in the Ruhr region of Germany. It’s headquarter is situated in the city of Essen. The 38 members of JAS have different professional backgrounds. They are architects, urban designers, city- and regional planners, landscape architects and pedagogues. They organize themselves on a honorary base in regional groups and project related groups. The members develop projects and bring in grands and sponsors for financing the projects.

Where is JAS?

Today JAS is operating nationally, with hubs in the Ruhr region, Cologne, Berlin-Brandenburg and Hamburg. In 2010 JAS opened up an architectural academy for children and young people in Essen. It is called JAS vor ORT and offers a continuous program of classes and workshops. Beyond that JAS is part of a national and internationally network and active for example in the International association of architectural education PLAYCE (www.playce.org).

How does JAS work?

JAS works with a wide variety of teaching and participation methods. Depending on issues, topics and target groups methods are selected, used, modified or newly developed. So the method repertoire of JAS becomes continuously larger. It can be categorized in 4 basic approaches: SEE, EXPLORE, DESIGN, PRESENT.

JAS in the year 2010!

In 2010 JAS realized nationwide over 50 projects in cooperation with initiatives, schools, municipalities and various other institutions. Approximately 1,800 children and young people were participating. 8 projects were implemented in and with schools. In April 2010 the architectural academy for children and young people started its educational program in Essen. Beyond that JAS members lectured nationally and internationally on 14 conferences and 6 teacher-training programs on projects and benefits of built-environment education and participatory designing processes.