• Exhibition

Hack our habitat

  • Industrial design and products
  • Architecture
  • Interior
  • Urban planning
  • Sustainability
Sep 3, Thu 10:00
Sep 4, Fri 08:00
Sep 7, Mon 08:00
Sep 8, Tue 08:00
Sep 9, Wed 08:00
Sep 10, Thu 08:00
Sep 11, Fri 10:00
Vuorimiehentie 2A
Event type
Free Admission
Accessibility for all

Aggressive urbanisation is putting a huge strain on our ecosystem. Rising construction volume causes massive demand for energy-intensive construction materials, and construction already accounts for 39 percent of global CO2 emissions. 

Growing urban areas make it difficult for plants and animals to thrive. They also cause floods and flush chemicals into the oceans.

Around 90 percent of our time is spent indoors, so the built environment has a huge impact on our wellbeing. 

We need to hack our habitat and design better built environments for ourselves and the whole ecosystem.

The 13 projects in this battle:

1. Articulated landscapes: Sustainable future cities  

By viewing the city as a systemic network of relationships, we can develop new approaches to our future challenges related to urbanisation; climate change, environmental pollution, loss of biodiversity and exhaustion of natural resources. showcased as an virtual exhibition

The exhibition is part of a long-term collaboration Aalto University and Singapore University of Technology and is part of the Asia Programme by the Finnish National Agency for Education.


2. Carbon Lane – Urban biochar test site  

Biochar can significantly increase the long-term capacity of cities to sequester carbon. It can also help with stormwater management and prevents run-off. Biochar can be made of organic waste, and it could replace use of peat in the planting soil., Vuorimiehentie 2A, Espoo 

The project is a collaboration between City of Helsinki, University of Helsinki and University of Jyväskylä. 


3. Makers of Landscapes  

Landscape architecture is a multidisciplinary field, combining architecture, natural sciences and technology, and it has many solutions to climate change, such as sustainable landscape construction, stormwater management and green infrastructure., Beta SPACE, Otakaari 1X, Espoo 

The exhibition is a joint project with the Museum of Finnish Architecture and the Finnish Association of Landscape Architects, MARK. Lappset Group Ltd. and Viherympäristöliitto have supported the exhibition. 


4. Exploring nature-based solutions in urbanised Otaniemi 

Otaniemi campus, surrounded by a long coastline, is facing challenges of urban densification. Currently, over two thirds of surface area streets, rooftops and parking lots are impervious. A mathematical model explores the benefits of using nature-based solutions in stormwater design and management on the campus., Vuorimiehentie 2A, Espoo


5. Infrastructure walk in Otaniemi, OUTDOOR EVENT

The walk is a convivial and educational practice, combining technical expertise with local knowledge. It is guided but open-ended, aiming at identifying qualities worth noticing. Walking and talking together gives experts and participants a possibility to learn from each other and from the surroundings.  Join our researchers to discuss and learn about future infrastructure.

In English

Registration link to the walk. 

8.9.2020 17:00 – 19:00, Meeting point in front of Väre building, Otaniementie 14



6. Interplay of cultures – Education in Global Sustainability  

Thoughtful planning of cities can play a key role in preventing and alleviating many problems. Architects should therefore receive proper training to tackle the complex challenges of the future. A selection of student projects celebrates the 25th anniversary of education in global sustainability and humanitarian development at Aalto., Vuorimiehentie 2A, Espoo

The exhibition was first organized at the Museum of Finnish Architecture in 2018.  


7. New Life of Gardenia – adaptive reuse concepts  

Instead of causing a huge carbon spike through demolition and new construction, buildings should be given a new life. Architecture students have developed ideas for the future use of Gardenia Helsinki in Viikki – see how Gardenia would work as a vertical farm, a mosque or a school., Vuorimiehentie 2A, Espoo 

This project was done in collaboration with The City of Helsinki. 


8. Layering Cellulose: Recyclable bio-material structures  

Materials used in furniture, interiors and construction consist of several ingredients that might be difficult to separate and recycle, and some of them can be harmful for humans or nature. These all-cellulose prototypes use nanocellulose as a glue and an ingredient for strong structures, Vuorimiehentie 2A, Espoo 

The research was done in collaboration with VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland, and it was funded by Business Finland. 


9. The Alder Project – How to understand forests 

80% of all terrestrial species are living in forests, but the use of wood is unsustainable and monocultural. Our traditionally respectful and close connection to forests doesnt concretise in practise. The Alder Project documents a zero-waste approach: how an alder tree can be cut down, researched and used for furniture while leftovers are processed as a new fibre-based biomaterial., Vuorimiehentie 2A, Espoo


10. Waves rising Projections of rising sea levels 

Waves Rising is a sculptural installation that conceptually materialises projections of rising sea levels as a consequence of climate change., Vuorimiehentie 2A, Espoo

This installation was shown at the Helsinki City Hall in January 2020. 


11. The Baltic Ripple Effect 

The Baltic Sea is not only one of the busiest shipping routes in the world but also one of the most vulnerable biospheres; a fragile ecosystem that is suffering from human impact. The artists, designers and photographers expose threats to the fragile ecosystem of the Baltic Sea., Vuorimiehentie 2A, Espoo

Polaris artistic research project is a collaboration between Aalto University School of Art, Design and Architecture and IMAGE magazine. 


12. The Project Underground: a Whale  

This video installation reminds visitors that the number of blue whales still remains low even after 40 years of Antarctic whaling was banned. Still more than 1400 whales are commercially killed every year., Exhibited at the School of Economics, Ekonominaukio 1

13. Soil Mattersa satellite exhibition 

Explore the materiality of soil and how it is interwoven with human activity.  

4.9.20–10.1.21, Designmuseum, Korkeavuorenkatu 23, Helsinki 

The exhibition is a collaboration between Designmuseum, Finnish Environmental Institute SYKE and Saastamoinen Foundation.

Visit the Hack our habitat exhibition at Otaniemi:

Dear visitors according to the current coronavirus guidelines, only the Aalto students and personnel can visit the Otaniemi campus exhibitions without pre-booking. 

> enroll to Hack our Habitat exhibition

Exhibition location: Vuorimiehentie 2A, 02150 Espoo.


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