Focus Policy

Inward development calls for open modes of governance After fifty years of spatial development not sustainable with regard to land use, energy consumption, or infrastructure costs, the only alternative to overcome this development is to transform and advance existing spatial structures. Historically, Switzerland has evolved from a landscape More

Focus Design

The Spatial Transformation and Design unit explores processes and potentials of spatial transformation and its consequences from neighbourhoods to transnational scales. Its research focuses on mechanics of change and methods for collaborative processes of spatial transformation using design as a key element dealing with complex problem situations.

EiR PD Dr. Joris Van Wezemael, Dr. Markus Nollert | Spatial Transformation Laboratories (STL)

Joris Van Wezemael was Professor of Human Geography at the Université de Fribourg and CEO in charge of mandates of a real-estate investment foundation of the Pensimo Group. Since 2019, he has been Executive-in-Residence at IRL/STL of ETH Zurich.
Markus Nollert is the founder of (bureau für raumentwicklung) and, since August 2018, head of the Spatial Transformation Laboratories (STL) group at IRL. In addition to his own research activities and lectures, he is co-ordinating the continuation of teaching activities at the Department of Spatial Development.

Transformation of Urban Landscapes

7 Sessions on selected Mondays, 10:00–12:00 ETH Zurich, Hönggerberg, HIL E 4. Cities and their planning have always been complex. The era of globalization exposed and brought to the fore this complexity. The reason behind this is the networking of hitherto rather iso­ lated places and systems across More


Master of Advanced Studies ETH in Spatial Development

This site is currently unter reconstruction. For current information, please visit the German site.

Designing our Living Spaces 

Switzerland is currently facing major challenges in the area of spatial planning. Demographic changes, the need for an internal settlement development to meet the requirements of a continuing population and employment growth, integration of infrastructures, cross-border tasks and others more are important themes of the current discussions. A central concern is a sustainable design and use of our living space. The task for professionals active in spatial planning is to clarify current and future significant problems for cities, communities, regions and the national level and to design solutions that include the processes that belong to it. In addition, the MAS in Spatial Planning ETH Zurich provides a comprehensive and well-founded continuing education at the university level. The central elements of the programme are two interdisciplinary study projects, which help in deepening and applying the knowledge and skills won from lectures and seminars as well as individual study. In addition, the MAS programme is enriched by the exchange of factual knowledge between the quite different disciplines and professional experience of the participants. Lectures by renowned experts from near and far, a study visit and a project in European lands complete the programme.

Programme Duration and Degree

The MAS/CAS Programme takes two years and starts every second Fall Semester. It comprises approximately 880 class hours. A successful completion of the entire programme in spatial planning earns 63 ECTS credit points. The teaching languages are German and English. The title Master of Advanced Studies (MAS) ETH in Spatial Planning will be awarded for the successful completion of the course.
The DAS Programme (30 ECTS) and CAS Programme (10 ECTS) are also on offer as part of the continuing education programme in spatial planning.

Target Group

The MAS/CAS Programme is oriented toward Swiss and foreign professionals with a university degree in fields related to spatial planning, i.e. architecture, geography, engineering, natural science, law, sociology or the humanities, with an emphasis on professional experience in the fields of spatial planning and spatial development.

Admission Requirements

Entrance to the MAS/CAS Programme requires a Master’s degree from an educational institution recognised by ETH or an equivalent educational level and two years of professional experience after completing a degree in a field related to spatial planning.

For information on the application process, go to the MAS/CAS Programme Website.