UIA – HYP Cup 2019 International Student Competition in Architectural Design

Submission: September 20, 2019
Registration: August 30, 2019
Language: English
Location: Concept
Prizes: Please see details below
Type: Open


Architecture in Transformation should respond to contemporary challenges and changes. What concerns us primarily is the relationship between architecture and city, as well as the one between architecture and natural environment. The competition aims at searching and constructing human space with a Spirit of Place in the increasingly fragmented cities and unordered villages, exploring environment-friendly and sustainable ideas in the information age, and integrating creative concepts with solid basic skills in architectural design. The competition

requires the participants to make detailed insights and reflections on architectural development, explore complicated demands of the people nowadays for architecture and environment, pay attention to specific sites and the events happening in them, and configure viable and dynamic urban and architectural spaces, at the same time seek suitable techniques to guarantee the possibility of implementation of the project.

“UIA-HYP Cup International Student Competition in Architectural Design” was initiated in 2012. It is internationally sponsored by the Union International des Architects (UIA), organized by the School of Architecture, Tianjin University and Urban Environment Design (UED) Magazine. Shanghai HYP-ARCH Architectural Design Consultant Co. Ltd. is the Exclusive Naming Sponsor. It is an annual architectural competition which has been successfully held for 7 years. Each year, the UIA-HYP Cup is chaired by an internationally renowned architectural master, and the jury panel is selected from among the world’s most outstanding architects and deans from schools of architecture. To boost the architectural education which mainly focuses on basic skill training in its conventional and progressive system, UIA-HYP Cup International Student Competition takes the role as an external platform for student to embrace a brand new thinking approach in order to improve their comprehensive problem solving skill, meanwhile it is also some kind of headhunter for discovering emerging elite architects.


Architects can change people’s environment and influence their future in a positive way. They can create “happy spaces” that contribute to people’s well-being. Inserting a building in a nice environment makes this goal easier. When the building is linked to its surroundings, when the limits are blurred with the construction, all of the positive elements of the site can contribute to create this good feeling inside. But the real defy is how to do the opposite, how to influence in a positive way the surroundings throughout the architecture?

Big cities often contain places that lack identity and whose existences are hardly linked with culture, history or tradition. These places are so-called “periphery” or “degraded” areas that remained isolated and un-integrated, such as neighborhoods with social conflict or poverty. They are often damaged and in need of reconstruction due to lousy planning or no planning at all. The architects’ mission is, therefore, to recognize the character of the site and create its ‘sense of place’. This creation looks into the transforming of negative spaces into positive ones by bringing out its inspiring and attractive qualities – this is defined as “happy spaces”, by designing and building a “happy building” in an “unhappy environment”.

To that end, the building should be built in harmony with the urban context and its natural landscape, and should be in connection with people and history. Architecture cannot be detached from the pre-existent context and significant past events. A building in relation to its context will form an organic system, and it is not possible to imagine such system without taking into consideration the people in it. This is significant as humanity is the heart of all systems.

In addition, human activities should also be considered as a key part of the system. Therefore architects are expected to propose not only the form of the building in relation to its surroundings, but also the activities and the programs associated in the space. It is important that architects should have a comprehensive vision for the built environment in every dimension.

These considerations need to be conducted with a real ecological approach. A sustainable intervention should always come first when creating an artificial ecosystem. In this way, the beneficial forces made by the new intervention can also affect the surrounding neighborhood positively. A responsible intervention in all aspects should take into consideration an improvement of one area and not solely the comfort and wellness inside one building.

For these reasons we would like to ask students to think about a building in its wider context. From the perspective of sustainability, sociality and history, students are encouraged to place their architectural projects as consequence of the past and as a contribution to the future, thinking the inhabited areas as interrelated artificial ecosystems in harmony with the rest of the city, the landscape, the climate, the physical and social context. Architects can create a sustainable environment that could improve the health and well-being of the people.

The competition is conceived as an exercise to help students understand:
– How to plan a building and its environment as a comprehensive system.
– How to improve a place through an architectural intervention.
– How to integrate inside and outside; the building and the landscape.
– Understand the importance of analysis of the site and context.
– How to create a happy building in a less happy environment.
Providing a project experience which teaches students about the social responsibility of an architectural project and how it can change people’s life in a positive way.

– Participants can choose sites in a degraded urban/ landscape area, preferably at the periphery (anywhere in the world). The site shall include construction area and surrounding area of the building. The student proposal should become a unit that can be imagined as a whole.
* A degraded area can be for instance an urban unstructured area, residual zones where urban planning didn’t arrive or didn’t have a positive effect, areas that remained un-integrated in a city/landscape, self-constructed neighborhoods. They can be areas that remained isolated, can be difficult neighborhoods, areas with social conflict or poverty, areas that have been damaged and need reconstruction, etc. They are places that are not attractive for the people or investors.

– It is compulsory that the context is existing, and participants shall define how their intervention can improve the quality, the value, the social life, the wellness and transform it into an attractive one.
– The surrounding area can vary in dimensions, but it has to guarantee the integration of the building with the surroundings. The participants should include a surrounding area that can create an ecosystem together with the building/ buildings itself.
– Participants can propose types of program or activity, but they should be mixed (at least 2 different functions). They have to propose the uses and program for the construction and for the surrounding area as well.
– The construction can have around 4,000㎡ but it is not restricted to this dimension. Any dimension is possible if it is justified.
– The proposal shall have the intention to improve the environment and bring benefits to the people living there.

– Integration of the building with the landscape/context.
– Sustainability of the proposal.
– The social benefits of the proposal and how it can improve people’s life.


International Supporter:
Union International des Architectes (UIA)

Hosting Organization:
School of Architecture, Tianjin University;
Urban Environment Design (UED) Magazine

Advising Institution:
Chinese National Supervision Committee of Higher Architecture Education;
Chinese National Evaluation Committee of Higher Architecture Education;
Architecture Art Committee of China Artists Association

Exclusive Naming Sponsor:
Shanghai HYP-ARCH Architectural Design Consultant CO., LTD.

School of Architecture, Tsinghua University; College of Architecture and Urban Planning, Tongji University; School of Architecture, Southeast University; School of Architecture, South China University of Technology; School of Architecture, Xi’an University of Architecture and Technology; Faculty of Architecture and Urban Planning, Chongqing University; School of Architecture, Harbin Institute of Technology

Supporting Organization:
The University of Hong Kong; The Chinese University of Hong Kong; National Cheng Kung University; Tunghai University; Chung Yuan Christian University; TamKang University; Zhejiang University; Huazhong University of Science and Technology; Dalian University of Technology; Hunan University; Nanjing University; Peking University; Beijing University of Civil Engineering and Architecture; Hefei University of Technology; Shenyang Jianzhu University; China Central Academy of Fine Arts; Shenzhen University; Xiamen University; Shanghai Jiao Tong University; Inner Mongolia University of Technology; Shandong Jianzhu University; Hebei University of Technology; Southwest Jiaotong University; North China University of Technology; Beijing University of Technology; Tianjin Chengjian University; Beijing Jiaotong University; Fuzhou University; Qingdao University of Technology

Supporting Media:
The Architect; New Architecture; Architecture & Detail; Architecture & Culture; Designer & Designing; Urbanism and Architecture (UA); Architecture Technique (AT); the Chinese Version of A+U; DOMUS; Urban China; Design Community; soufun.com; focus.com; dichan.sina.com.cn; tj.sina.com.cn; ABBS; arch.liwai.com; newsccn.com; chla.com.cn; artron.net; house 365.com

1st Prize (1 team)
Certificate and 100,000 RMB (approx.15, 000 USD) (before tax);
2nd Prize (3 teams)
Certificate and 30,000 RMB (approx.4, 500 USD) (before tax);
3rd Prize (8 teams)
Certificate and 10,000 RMB (approx. 1, 500 USD) (before tax);
Honorable Mentions (several teams)
Certificate and 6-month free subscription of UED magazine;
Advisors of prize-winning projects will also be awarded with certificates.

1. This is a fair competition open to all architecture and relevant major students around the globe. Full-time on-campus architecture students from accredited institutions (including master and PhD candidates and graduate students of 2019) can participate alone or as a team with team members of no more than four people and advisors of no more than two.
2. Only the team leader will be contacted when necessary if students participate as a team.
3. Log on http://hypcup.uedmagazine.net/?r=site&en=1, click “Online Registration” to fill out the registration form and submit online.
4. After filled in the registration form, participants will get a serial number (please take care to preserve it as each participant/participating team has only one serial number).
5. Please submit the digital version of drawings and related documents to uedcompetition@163.com before the submission deadline, 24:00(GMT+8) September 20th, 2019. The organizing committee accepts no printed version. Entries will be printed and exhibited together in due time.
6. With the assistance of the committee, juries will meet and decide the winners.
7. Inquiries related to the competition will be responded to via e-mail: uedcompetition@163.com.

1. Please submit the digital version of drawings and related documents to uedcompetition@163.com. Please include “Competition+ Registration Serial Number” in the e-mail subject line. If the entry is too large to be attached, please upload to online file sharing website such as “Wetransfer” or “Googledrive” and provide download link in the submission email. Entries will be printed and laid out by the committee.
2. Language: English
3. Scale and dimensions must be in metric units.
4. Documents: Recognizable scanned copy of passport and student card should be attached in the e-mail. Students themselves are responsible for the authenticity of the documents.
5. Entry Requirements
a. Specification: The layout of the 841mm x 594mm drawing should be horizontal. Each work should be composed of 3 drawings .
b. Content: Site-plan that can fully express the design intention; plans, elevations and sections; perspective drawing, illustration and a design description of about 500 words (to be integrated in the pictures and drawings). There is no limitation on proportion.
c. A TXT document must be attached in the e-mails of the submission, which include participants’ name, registration number, e-mail address, mobile phone number, name and contact information of the advisor (if any), the full name of the school and department, title and brief introduction of the submitted work.
d. Drawing layout requirements:
1) Please submit the drawing layout (300 dpi in resolution at least) in the version of jpg, and name the picture according to the content (such as XXX plan 1)
2) Please submit the text information in the version of TXT in the folder named by the participant(s)’ name
3) Submission Requirement:
Please submit one file in the format of zip or rar and the file size should be between 50mb-100mb.
This file should contain three folders, they are:
(1) Drawing: Three drawings
(2) Identity Certificate: Scanned ID photo (or Student Card and Passport)
(3) Text (TXT)

1. Individual participants and groups must agree with and follow the competition requirements and regulations. The organizing committee reserves its right of final interpretation.
2. Entries with words or pictures relating to the name or department of participants in the digital drawings will be disqualified from the competition.
3. Participants have the copyright, while the organization committee can exercise all other rights except authorship.
4. Entries that have been submitted to other competitions, published on other public occasions or found to be similar to other works in terms of design ideas will be disqualified from the competition.
5. Juries cannot act as advisers to participants; otherwise participants will be disqualified from the competition.
6. Each participant can only register in one team.
7. Each group is only allowed to submit one piece of work. Repeated submission is prohibited. Once discovered, the organizing committee owns the right to choose any one of them.
8. The information of the team is based on the final submission of the TXT file.

Go to the competition’s website

international student competition