Jaap Bakema Study Centre

Collaboration with Het Nieuwe Instituut, Rotterdam

The Jaap Bakema Study Centre was founded at the end of 2013 by the Nieuwe Instituut and the Faculty of Architecture of the Delft University of Technology (TU Delft) to initiate scientific research in the field of architecture and urban design together with third parties. The collections of the National Collection for Dutch Architecture and Urban Planning form the basis for a research programme that is situated at the intersection of advanced historical and theoretical research and urgent social issues. The activities are divided into several long-term projects.

Habitat: Expanding Architecture, exhibition curated by Dirk van den Heuvel at Het Nieuwe Instituut, Rotterdam, 2018. Photo by Johannes Schwartz

At the outset, in 2013, the primary focus was on the visibility and use of the National Collection for academic research and public presentations. Among other results, this led to the exhibition Structuralism, jointly curated with Herman Hertzberger, and a contribution to the Venice Architecture Biennale about Jaap Bakema’s propositions for the “open society”. The programme has now broadened and deepened with international PhD research, the Dutch Research Council (NWO) project The Critical Visitor, and forward-thinking annual conferences. New projects are developed with international partners, such as the Art on Display exhibition with the Gulbenkian Museum in Lisbon.

The Jaap Bakema Study Centre is directed by Dirk van den Heuvel with the support of an international academic advisory board. Board members are Tom Avermaete (ETH Zurich), Hetty Berens (Nieuwe Instituut), Maristella Casciato (Getty), Carola Hein (TU Delft) and Georg Vrachliotis (TU Delft). For more information please contact Fatma Tanış, coordinator of the Jaap Bakema Study Centre.

As of 2018, the research group Architecture, Culture and Modernity has been established at TU Delft by Dirk van den Heuvel and Jorge Mejia Hernandez. Special emphasis is reserved for the academic value of the archives at Het Nieuwe Instituut. A first call for PhD proposals and PhD colloquium was set up related to the theme ‘Architecture and Democracy’.

The Jaap Bakema Study Centre also facilitates visiting researchers who help to disclose the archive of Het Nieuwe Instituut. Previous guests include: M. Christine Boyer (Princeton University), Georges Teyssot (Université de Laval), Gianluca Ferriero (Politecnico di Milano), Rebeca Merino del Río (Universidad de Valladolid), and Fabiano Borba Vianna (Universidade de São Paulo), among others. In 2017, the Jaap Bakema Study Centre welcomed Maarten Gielen and Lionel Devlieger of the Brussels-based office Rotor as visiting professors. Current researchers are Íñigo Cornago Bonal, Burcu Köken, Elena Martínez Millana and Paula Lacomba Montes and Alejandro Campos Uribe.


Funder: Het Nieuwe Instituut (HNI)
Overall budget: ca. € 100.000,- per annum
Grant amount: Structural collaboration with additional funding per sub-project.
Contribution to TU Delft: per sub-project (e.g. book, conference), overall for ca. € 200.00,- incl fte  
Role TU Delft:  Lead partner
Project duration: Established as of November 2013. Current cycle 2021 - 2024
TU Delft researchers:                 Dr.ir. Dirk van den Heuvel
Dr. Jorge Mejia
Íñigo Cornago Bonal
Burcu Köken
Dr. Elena Martínez Millana
Dr. Paula Lacomba Montes
Dr. Alejandro Campos Uribe

Project partners

Het Nieuwe Instituut (HNI)


Dr.ir. Dirk van den Heuvel