As today's architecture students move into the profession, they will inherit a rapidly changing world, both in terms of the physical contexts of their work, and the tools, materials and processes available to create it. Preparing students for this challenging, dynamic future calls for greater integration of innovative ecological design thinking within the design discourse of universities across the country.


The American Institute of Architects Committee on the Environment (AIA COTE), in partnership with the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture (ACSA), is pleased to announce the first annual AIA COTE Top Ten for Students. The program challenged students to submit projects that use a thoroughly integrated approach to architecture, natural systems, and technology to provide architectural solutions that protect and enhance the environment. The competition recognizes ten exceptional studio projects that seamlessly integrate innovative, regenerative strategies within their broader design concepts.


Measure 1:   Design and Innovation
Measure 2:   Regional/Community Design
Measure 3:   Land Use and Site Ecology
Measure 4:   Bioclimatic Design
Measure 5:   Light and Air
Measure 6:   Water Cycle
Measure 7:   Energy Flows and Energy Future
Measure 8:   Materials and Construction
Measure 9:   Long Life, Loose Fit
Measure 10: Collective Wisdom and Feedback Loops


       About our competition sponsor – ViewGlass
We are a company on a mission. We believe that View Dynamic Glass will create entirely new possibilities to elevate occupant experience, and change the way we think about architectural design. We will help produce buildings with the expansive views we crave, with abundant natural light, and greater occupant comfort. And conserve energy at the same time. View has assembled a diverse team of entrepreneurs, partners and investors, developing cutting edge technology, that is fueling a dramatic shift in building design...Living buildings that delight occupants and harmonize with the environment. It is precisely this world of possibility that inspires us every day. If you are inspired by this vision we invite you help us bring about the change.

      The American Institute of Architects Committee on the Environment (COTE) works to advance, disseminate, and advocate—to the profession, the building industry, the academy, and the public—design practices that integrate built and natural systems and enhance both the design quality and environmental performance of the built environment.AIA COTE serves as the community and voice on behalf of AIA architects regarding sustainable design. The founding of the AIA COTE in 1990 grew from a series of conversations and debates that date back twenty years. Today AIA COTE celebrates a robust definition of sustainability that frames the process of sustainable design as one that includes the full range of human settlement and ecological issues. Since 1997 the AIA COTE Top Ten Awards program has honored professionals for practices that integrate built and natural systems and enhance both the design quality and environmental performance of the built environment. Information on the awards program and the AIA COTE Measure of Sustainable Design can be found at
      Administrative Organization: The Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture is a nonprofit, membership association founded in 1912 to advance the quality of architectural education. The school membership in ACSA has grown from 10 charter members to over 250 schools in several membership categories. These include full membership for all accredited programs in the United States and government-sanctioned schools in Canada, candidate membership for schools seeking accreditation, and affiliate membership for schools for two-year and international programs. Through these schools, over 5,000 architecture faculty members are represented. In addition, over 500 supporting members composed of architecture firms, product associations and individuals add to the breadth of interest and support of ACSA goals. ACSA provides a major forum for ideas on the leading edge of architectural thought. Issues that will affect the architectural profession in the future are being examined today in ACSA member schools.


  • Nicole Gerou, Lawrence Technological University & AIAS Board Member
  • Bob Harris, Lake | Flato Architects
  • Alison Kwok, University of Oregon
  • Bill Leddy, Leddy Maytum Stacy Architects
  • Margot McDonald, California Polytechnic State University


The competition had over 400 participants from the following schools:
Arizona State University
Ball State University
California Polytechnic State UniversityCalifornia
State Polytechnic University, Pomona
City College of New York
Cornell University
Florida Atlantic University
Harvard University GSD
Iowa State University
Judson University
Kansas State University
Lawrence Technological University
Miami University
New Jersey Institute of Technology
NewSchool of Architecture and Design
North Carolina State University
Rhode Island School of Design
Savannah College of Art and Design
Southern California Institute of Architecture
Southern Polytechnic State University
Texas A&M University
The University of Colorado Boulder
University of British Columbia
University of Idaho
University of Kansas
University of Maryland
University of Massachusetts, Amherst
University of Michigan
University of North Carolina at Charlotte
University of Oregon
University of Pennsylvania
University of Southern California
University of Tennessee-Knoxville
University of Toronto
University of Washington
University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
Western Kentucky University
Woodbury University


The projects will be on view at the American Institute of Architects Annual Convention in Atlanta, GA (May 2015) and the 104th ACSA Annual Meeting in Seattle, WA (March 2016).