International Perspectives on Planting Design 2013

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Naturpark Schöneberger Südgelände, Berlin, image by Sebastian Michalke (creative commons, share alike, add author, non commercial)

--> back to overview Planting Design 2013

Objectives and Aims

This seminar aims to explore how landscape architecture is influenced by the various interpretations of nature in different cultural contexts. To what extent do these varying understandings still shape our design principles? And how much globalisation do we already encounter in these principles? The focus will be on the use of plants in various contexts and at different scales: from ornamental design to bioengineering, from public squares to urban parks. The course consists of a series of invited lectures during which the viewpoints of landscape architects form different part of the world will be presented and discussed. In addition, some theoretical introduction into the theory of nature and landscape perception will be given. Student participants will work in small intercultural teams on some joint assignment during the course.

The seminar is addressed to a worldwide target group of landscape architecture students or students from neighbouring disciplines interested in learning jointly about this important professional field. We also encourage professionals to attend the seminar.

For more details on the lecture please read the seminar schedule.


  • Registration period: 27.09. - 22.10.2013
  • Please register online: Registration form
  • first year IMLA student do not need to register online

Student Activities

Throughout the seminar the participants will follow a sequence of activities related to individual and group work. Concept mapping will be used for pre- and post-seminar assessment. Each participant will contribute a planting design case study from his/her local context and document the case on the seminar wiki. Another activity will be to work in a small intercultural group on a design assignment.

Time Frame

  • 14 online meetings taking place from October 30 2013 - February 5 2014, Wednesdays from 18.00 - 19.30 pm CET in the Adobe Connect Seminar Room (invitations to this room will be sent to participants by e-mail)
  • Your local time? See Time Zone Conversion
  • Participants will be able to login from 17.30 pm CET for informal questions & answers.
  • Please make sure to log in at least 10 mins before official starting time for appropriate soundcheck so that we can start the session on time!!
  • Optional work before and/or after online meeting time in individual groups.


Performance assessments are based on successful completion of four assignments. Depending on the number of completed assignments, the seminar workload translates into two or three ECTS.

  • Assignment 1: Pre-seminar concept map of the overall seminar theme
  • Assignment 2: Concept mapping of seminar lectures
  • Assignment 3: Individual case documentation: Images of nature in your environment
  • Assignment 4: Collaborative design in small groups
  • Assignment 5: Post-seminar concept map of the overall seminar theme

for more details, please see: Assignments Seminar International Perspectives Planting Design 2013

Target Group

  • This course is designed for Master students in landscape architecture. 3rd year bachelor students may also participate. Professionals are also invited to attend the seminar.
  • The course language is English. Efficient skills in both speaking and writing are presumed.
  • Good levels of independence and willingness to work in a group are expected.

Participating Universities:

Technological Requirements

  • stable internet connection (DSL)
  • PC or laptop with Windows, Mac or Linux operation system
  • headset (microphone and earphones)
  • registered participants will receive a link for entering the team room during seminar times.

How to contribute as a speaker

If you are invited as a speaker in one of the plenary sessions you will be asked to prepare for a 20 - 30 minute presentation in the form of a slideshow (final format: pdf file). Since plenary sessions usually take 90 minutes, presentations are often followed by a moderated discussion (15 mins introduction, 30 mins presentation plus 30 - 45 minutes discussion).

Guidelines for presentations

Please consider the following aspects when you are preparing for a presentation:

  • Please avoid written information on the slides except for the most essential statement and questions. As you will be talking synchronously to the audience, there is absolutely no need to add much textual information on the slides.
  • Please add many visuals and use the space given. You may not add a number of small images on one slide. Use several slides, each with one image.
  • If you have questions to the audience (e.g. at the end in order to stimulate the discussion) you should visualise the question on the slide.
  • Please send your presentation in good time to the seminar coordinator (at least two days before the meeting). We then have the chance to propose changes or additions in order to make your presentation more suitable for a virtual classroom setting.

Contact and Organisation

Dipl.-Ing. Ellen Fetzer

Nürtingen-Geislingen University, Germany // Study Programme International Master of Landscape Architecture

email: ellen.fetzer(at)