2A Europe Architecture Award


An architectural style in any region is characterized by the features that make a building or other structure notable and historically identifiable. A style may include such elements as form, method of construction, building materials, and regional cultural character. Most architecture can be classified as a chronology of styles which changes over time reflecting changing fashions, lifestyles, beliefs and religions, or the emergence of new ideas, innovative technologies, or materials which make new styles feasible and possible.
Styles therefore emerge from the history of a society and are evident in the subject of architectural history. At any given time several styles may be fashionable, and when a style changes it usually does so gradually, as architects learn and adapt to new ideas. Styles often spread to other places, so that the style at its source continues to develop in new ways while other countries follow with their own twists, adding or omitting certain features in order to harmonize this new style with their local needs and culture.
European architecture has also been affected and shaped by many factors throughout its history. Major contemporary events such as two world wars, industrialization which lead to massive migration from farm lands to big cities where the factories were centralized . This lead to increased population in urban centers, Furthermore, foreign immigration and emergence of modern technologies have fundamentally affected the course of Evolution of European architecture.
This challenges among others, has caused the European architecture to transform. Today's European architects have to deal with many dualities and sometimes even paradoxes when trying to design and build a unique new project, because they need to consider their cultural roots while building a modern project which should also be functional and suitable with their contemporary realities and needs.
Some of these challenges are taking into consideration the following dichotomies below.
• Diversity and Unity

Create unity in diversity, And also maintain the diversity and unique features and identities, in the unified continent
• Society and Responsiveness
The euro banknotes reveal a lot about architecture. Its depiction on both sides of the bills – typical buildings on the one side and bridges more exemplary for engineering feats on the other – is a testament to its importance. The bills also prove that this importance stems from architecture’s powers of providing identity: The bridges seem to connect Europe, as does its shared traditional language of architecture or the technological progress interacting with it. If it can define the identity of a whole continent, architecture quite obviously has a great influence on society. It does more than simply stand for itself. It also represents what we stand for. The wielding of such influence demands responsible behavior, and that goes for all aspects of architecture: the aesthetic, functional, social, financial, political and, today more than ever, the environmental aspects.
• Tradition Versus Modernism
the dialogue between old and new, traditionalism and Modernism. Moving forward and  Progress is a necessity, because the needs and consciousness of any society  are subject to constant change and transformation. Failing to react and respond means stagnation. However, the opposite of stagnation can be equally as harmful and dangerous. When a society accelerates so fast that it cuts off all historic ties and loses its cultural memory, it will also lose its identity. That is not progression, but regression. The idea that helps to avoid both of these is that of tradition. These problems concern the dual role of architecture and urban design in a special way with respect to aesthetic and social discipline. To that extent, tradition is of central importance to architecture. Innovation and identity in architecture are not possible without a responsible and keen approach to tradition. This is as true on the global stage as it is on the regional one.
• Innovation and Identity
Buildings and people have a common trait: an identity. At least, they should have one. A person lacking individual character isn’t necessarily a bad person. But he is uninspiring, lacking uniqueness and a dull conversation partner. Without an identity, no one can or wants to identify with him. More than likely, you wouldn’t even notice him in the first place. The same goes for buildings. A building lacking identity is a bad one, architecturally speaking, because it could just as well be a different one. A good building is always specific. It carries a message. This type of message can take various forms. Architecture can relate something about an individual person, a group, a city, or a country. It can tell a story about the relations between tradition and modernity, culture and nature, aesthetics, technology and function. Purely functional design overlooks the fact that it is part of architecture’s role to create identity. And this isn’t only about being distinctive. One of its noblest and most important tasks is to create an outward expression of identity.
Architecture is art applied to society; it is made for people, not for its own sake. In order to create an identity not just for the building itself, but also for the people around it or using it, two kinds of identity are necessary: People have to be able to identify the building as something special (by its distinctiveness). But they should also be able to identify with it and with its message. Identity creates dialogue, and dialogue creates identity.
• Urbanism
Politics, the economy and technology have removed many boundaries in recent decades, or made them more penetrable. Long before the advent of the internet, media theorist Marshall McLuhan coined the often-used term “global village”. But the days of the village have gone. Nowadays it is more appropriate to talk about the “urban globe”: the world population is growing at the same pace as that of the cities. In 2007, for the first time in history, more people lived in cities than in rural areas.
In terms of its population, the world is becoming bigger – and people are living closer together. The word 'density' is perhaps the most important keyword for understanding urbanism and its corollary: mobility. The two terms are closely interrelated. Traffic density, population density, density of development – all of these are increasing rapidly.
• Mobility
Thanks to modern transportation technology and logistics, today almost anyone can travel easily to almost any place on earth. Masses of people are on the move at any point in time and meet each other, in particular, at urban intersections: in railway stations and airports.
Today, mobility-related architecture is one of the most complicated building tasks there is. It has to combine the most diverse functions and coordinate a wide range of processes – and all that in a relatively small space and with maximum efficiency. Railway stations and airports link cities with each other and – with respect to their diversity and complexity, and even sometimes their dimension – are themselves comparable to cities. It is not enough to include aspects of security, safety, logistics, leisure, consumption, gastronomy, administration and technology in the design, to mention but a few.
Modern architecture or modernist architecture is a term applied to a group of styles of architecture which emerged in the first half of the 20th century and became dominant after World War II. It was based upon new technologies of construction.
Modern architecture emerged from revolutions in technology, engineering and building materials, and from a desire to break away from historical architectural styles and to invent something that was purely functional and new.
2A magazine and its vision for Europe Architecture Award is that a great European architectural project should take into consideration its roots and identity while at the same time use modern technologies, materials and designs in order to meet the dynamic needs of the contemporary era.

2A Europe Architecture Award 2018

2A Magazine is pleased to announce 2AEA 2018, with the theme “Innovative Contextual Architecture in Europe”. Accordingly, the Award is for the recognition of an individual's or group's substantial contribution to today’s architecture in terms of contemporary challenges of the field and region and the projects that can have a lasting influence on the theory and practice of architecture. This gathering is a profile of the diversity of cultures, identities, themes, ideas, and experiences in architecture and a platform to share, explore and discuss in a professional environment.

The program includes:

• The Award Ceremony

• The exhibition of the winner projects at the IAAC school of Architecture


The following criteria will be considered to recognize and honor a built project/ future project in Europe that has produced significant contributions to humanity and built environment.
• Design Achievement including Concept, Strategy and Proceedings.
• Technical advancement includes engineering achievements (structural, mechanical, etc.) and innovative use of materials.
• Reflection of sense of place and of cultural identity and ecology; environmental sustainability (including ecological, and sociocultural sustainability)
• Social responsibility and community and urban connectivity.
• The effects of economical condition on the project.

• Transcendent Dimensions of Architecture  (the below text has been provided by: Nader Ardalan)

From a survey review of the projects selected by the 2A Asian and European Architectural Awards, what are the key, common-ground lessons learned about principles and conditions that support transcendence in architecture and practices that perpetuate access to such realm? How can they serve as "beacons" or “attractors” (from Chaos Theory) that may (1) guide future design efforts toward Transcendent Architecture; (2) empirically indicate its presence; and/or (3) provoke an experiential awareness of the sublime and the ineffable in the perceiving individual?At the core of our search might be the questions: what is transcendent creativity and how may some of the following considerations suggest valuable domains for investigation and inspiration to evoke a viable, common-ground and multi-dimensional framework for achieving in the individual and the collective a profound awareness of potentially holistically sustainable, culturally conscious and integrated 21st-century worldviews about the “Transcendent” in Architecture and environment building?

-Sensual Conditions: These include Tectonics/Materiality that are in direct and inevitable relation with natural Light, without which they couldn’t be fully appreciated. However, this dimension through its tactile, haptic, and other sensual qualities also bring the non-visual nature of architecture into full consideration.

-Formal-Spatial Conditions: These include space-form, geometry (proportion, mathematical order) and scale, which are an inseparable set for what could be best called the ‘Aesthetic Conditions’ of Transcendent Architecture.

-Programmatic Conditions: These cluster a creative, Luminous Building Program and the integration of Motion (access, ritual, and path) into the building design that basically deals with what is happening within and in proximity to the building.

-Temporal Conditions: They address anything that involves duration such as silence, sound and time itself.

-Connectedness Conditions: They bring attention to the myriad ways that architecture must relate to its physical and metaphysical environment: Context (immediate site), Cosmos/Nature (larger scale) and Ontological Axis (relation between measurable and immeasurable)

-Holistic Conditions: This puts together the most phenomenological yet profound effect of Transcendent Architecture: the sense of Unity and the Experience of the Hidden/Manifest.

These questions are especially urgent now, at this threshold of the 21st century threatened by vast impending global crises when critical thinking, at its most profound best, must contend with and challenge the pervading, outdated materialistic notions of reality that have brought us to this tipping point. The current model of ultimate reality holds that all questions can be answered by means of the scientific method of objective observation and measurement and existence is but a temporary, lifeless group of particles and waves that accidentally created separated human consciousness from isolated material realities. This notion is now being doubted by new state of the art paradigms and reinforced by discoveries of ancient wisdom traditions, which contend that our external and internal perceptions are fully intertwined and say that reality is based upon our consciousness which conceives, governs and generates our perceptions of the physical world. [1]

[1] Robert Lanza & Bob Berman, Biocentrism: How Life and Consciousness are the Keys to Understanding the True Nature of the Universe, BenBella Books, Dallas, 2009

Categories for Completed Projects

For completed projects, the award will be presented in the following categories. All categories are open to practices of all sizes and there is no limit to the amount of categories you can enter, however one project cannot be entered in two different categories. Please see How to Enter for more details on entries.

1) Residential
A- House/Villa   
B- Apartment   
C- Housing/ Residential Complex 

2) Commercial   
A- Shopping and Production   
B- Office and Business   
C- Retail, stores, warehouse 

3) Public   
A-Leisure, Travel Accommodation   
B- Education   
C- Medical, Nursery, etc.   
D- Culture and Religion   
G- Others 

4) Urban Projects, Rural Projects, Landscape & Public Spaces 

5) Old and New (Reuse and adaptation, Renovation, Restoration, Regeneration) 

6) Interior Architecture

If you need help to select the right category for your Entry please contact us and we will be happy to advise you.

Future Projects/Innovative Designs

This category is a celebration of excellence design-only, future or uncompleted projects including entries of regional/ international competitions, that meet the following conditions. We will be looking to champion creation and concept that has pushed its specific typology forward and proven a holistic and effective approach. Also:
• The site of the project is located in Europe, having rich ecological, cultural, historical or physical characteristics and features.
• Has Focused on responsive design, having addressed, challenged or responded to an architectural-related issue (physical, ecological, sociocultural, contextual, technical and..).
• It is based on local or regional studies.
• Introduces or represents an innovative design vision / approach.

The projects in this category will be divided in four subcategories:
A- Large-Scale Architecture   
B- Medium-Scale Architecture   
C- Small-Scale Architecture

Please note that:
• Future project category covers all eligible entries, regardless of the project program and subject.
• Except for the date of completion, this category covers and follows the same regulations and procedure for submission as built project categories.

Rules, Conditions and the procedure of the 2AEA:

• 2AEA is a one-stage entry/ two-stage judging competition.    

• The entry is open to all professional entrants, i.e., Individual architects, urban designers, urban planners, landscape architects, multi-professional teams and Architectural firms and offices.

• Other associated bodies, e.g., clients, developers, contractors, may also enter on behalf of the architect, with their consent.

• Join projects between universities and industry are eligible to participate in the competition.

• The Entries include two Sheets, introducing the project, in A2 size.

• The candidate projects of The First Stage Entry will be notified by email as well as will be announced in the 2A magazine website.

• The sheets of candidate projects will be printed out and the jury members will choose the winners of each category in a meeting held by 2A Magazine in IaaC school of architecture.

• All projects should have been completed on or after 01 January 2010. For Future Projects/Innovative Design category entries, the design dates should not be older than 2010.

• Future project category covers all eligible entries, regardless of the project program and subject.

• All Projects should have been built /located in one of the European countries. As for Future project category, the site of the project must be located in Europe.

• Participants can submit multiple projects under one website account, and there is no limit on the number of submitted projects.

• Each project can be applied only to a single category of the Award. In another words, one project cannot be submitted under two different categories.

For more submission information please visit: http://2amagazine.com/HowToEnter

If you have any problem submitting your project to our website please contact us at: info@2amagazine.com

Candidate Project

• The projects that pass the first stage of judgment are regarded as " Candidate Projects."

• The Candidate Projects will be announced on July 31st, 2018.

• Candidates can send us a presentation clip of their project (maximum 1 minute in length) to present their work better in the second stage of judgment, which takes place at the Institute for Advanced Architecture Catalonia on July 25th. The deadline of sending this clip is July 22nd 2018.

A thorough report of the judgment and the precise opinions of jury members about each project will be available at the award ceremony for winners, candidates and other participants.

• All the candidate projects will be published in a special edition of 2A Magazine.

• All the candidate projects will receive a qualification letter, representing that their project has been nominated from both 2A Magazine and IAAC.    

• A 3-day exhibition of all the candidate projects will take place at IAAC, 26th-28th October 2018.


• The top two winners in each Award category will receive Gold and Silver medals and the award certificate (from both 2A Magazine and IAAC), respectively.

• Upon Jury’s approving decision there might also be some special mentions in each category.

• The special mentions will receive certificates of recognition.

• All the candidate projects will receive a certificate, representing that their project has been nominated.   

• All the candidate projects will be published in a special edition of 2A Magazine and extra pages will be allocated to the winners and special mentions.

• The candidate and winners of 2ACAA and previous awards will be registered in the new facility of our website, Archiconnect, which is a platform for the introduction of the architects and their projects.

• Names and a brief review of all entries will be published in the news part of the website, after the event.

• Clients, developers and investors of the winner projects will receive a Letter of Appreciation. We appreciate their attendance in 2ACAA 2018 award ceremony as well and we value the fact that it has been because of their broad point of view that such projects could come into being.

If you have any problem submitting your project to our website please contact us at: info@2amagazine.com

Note: To receive the prizes and certificates, it's mandatory to participate in the award ceremony.

Note: If you candidates require a visa to attend the award ceremony, 2A Magazine will be of assistance with providing you invitation documents of maximum 3 people for each.

Award Calender


Asia: The entry opens on June 1st, 2018 and closes on July 10th, 2018, 4:00 pm CET.

Europe: The entry opens on June 4th, 2018 and closes on July 20th, 2018, 4:00 pm CET.

First Judging Stage: Online Judgment to select candidate projects:

July 25th-30th, 2018

Second Judging Stages: Jury Meeting and judgment of the printed panels at IAAC
August 25th, 2018 

Award Ceremony: 
October 26th, 2018 

Exhibition of The Candidate Projects: 
October 26th-28th, 2018

"Best Historic Contribution" Award

The contemporary life-style unequivocally requires inevitable changes in design, but the important matter is how we manage to merge the past, present and future in a way that results in sustainable development. Architecture, as a bold manifestation of every era is also no exception and carries a great heritage within, which is worth protection and being cherished. Furthermore, it must be delivered to the next generation, however may not in its complete actuality.  
Restoration, conservation and renovation of historic texture is one way of protection but what today we are facing is designing a new building among the older ones, which can be troubling and with different ideas about how to face such problems, one is never sure of what is the right approach. This issue has been persistent since long ago. For example, designing Centre Georges Pompidou, which at first people thought is not in line with the atmosphere of Paris and Eifel tower. Even the Eifel tower itself was such a building at first. 
Yet today, there is no definitive answer to such design problem but a procedure of problem solving through contextual awareness might be the best possible approach. 

To emphasize the importance of protecting the urban heritage, 2A magazine has created an award "Best Historic Contribution" to appreciate the efforts of architects who take time to protect and revive the buildings with historic significance.  The winner of this award will be chosen among the participants of 2A Europe Architecture Award and will receive a certificate of achievement. 


The Judging Stages:

- First Judging Stage: After the Entry Deadline, the jury members will be provided with an online access to the Award database and will rate the projects based on the judging criteria. The Candidate Projects will be chosen.

- Second Judging Stage: In a meeting held by 2A Magazine in IAAC school of architecture, the winners will be selected.

Entry and Submission Date

The entry opens at June 4th 2018 and closes at July 20th 2018, 4:00 pm CET.

Submission Fee

The 2ACAA entrance is free of charge.
The candidate projects will be charged 220 Euro to be considered for the next stage of judgment.
Note: This fee is to cover the costs of printing the presentation sheets, transferring the sheets to the location of the second stage of judgment, keeping the sheets until the exhibition of the candidate projects, publishing the candidate and winner projects in 2A Magazine, participation in the award ceremony and a plus-one, etc.

Ready to deliver a speech? Join us in Interaction Forum

To make 2A Continental Architectural Awards for Asia and Europe more of a reach experience, 2A Magazine has decided to add a new event to 2ACAA award ceremony, which is "Interaction Forum." 2A Interaction Forum is a combination of research and networking in architecture that creates a social and professional platform for sharing and discussing ideas about architecture and the theme of the award “ Innovative Contextual Architecture.”
We are inviting all the participants of 2ACAA, architecture professionals and enthusiasts to share their lectures with us, if approved they will be given a speech time of 8-12 minutes at this event to talk about their vision, ideas and experiences relating to architecture in Asia and Europe. This event also provides a Q&A opportunity for a better understanding of the subject and a deeper social connection between the attendees.

The following are the subjects that we appreciate to receive a lecture about:
- The Design Concept of The Participant Projects
- Contextual Architecture
- Spirituality in Architecture
- Effects of design and space on human behavior
- Effects of design on society, economics, nature, etc. 
- History of architecture and its relation to art
- New theories and design methods in Architecture
- Effect of technology on architecture
- Architectural Education, Teaching methods

However, if you have any other articles on different subjects that you find interesting, we would gladly hear about it. The deadline for sending an abstract of your lecture is August 1st 2018, but please send the provisional title of your speech sooner. 

2A Magazine Interaction Forum will take place alongside the award ceremony of the 2A Continental Architectural Awards for Asia and Europe on October 26th 2018.

If you are interested in participation please contact us with sufficient info about your speech via email at info@2amagazine.com

Copyright Policy

By submitting your project to 2A magazine website, you transfer the copyright of all the submitted materials (texts, pictures, architectural sheets,...) to 2A magazine. 2A Magazine has the privilege to require more publishing materials if needed by contacting the participants by email or telephone.

If there are any misconduct, mistake or lack of credits regarding the project team and designers, 2A magazine has no obligation and the issue concerns the participants directly.

Note: All the information submitted to the magazine have been provided by the competitors or designers, hence the responsibility of the third party liability lies with the competitors.

Award Venue

Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia