New perspectives on future sustainable way of living

Facts about the project
ArcInTexETN stands for Architecture, Interaction Design, Textile European Training Network


Universities and companies involved in the project:
• Royal College of Art
• Heriot-Watt University
• Eindhoven University of Technology
• Vilnius Academy of Arts
• The Berlin University of the Arts
• University of Borås
• Philips Electronics Netherlands BV
• AB Ludvig Svensson

The 15 doctoral students who participate in the project conduct their research individually and are divided into three groups of five doctoral students. Each group consists of doctoral students from the various areas of architecture, interiors, and the body.

ArcInTexETN is based on the concept that the doctoral students, who come from different disciplines, gain knowledge and inspiration from each other--thus resulting in cross-fertilisation. By linking together and deepening the connections between architecture, interaction design, and textiles, new ways of living in a more sustainable world can be visualised. ArcInTexETN is a training programme for doctoral students who have stood out in some way. Working together in interdisciplinary groups leads to new ideas and perspectives that benefit academia as well as business.

Lars Hallnäs, Senior Professor at the University of Borås and Research Supervisor of ArcInTexETN, and Agneta Nordlund Andersson, Coordinator, explain more about the project.

"The project's idea is to find perspectives on and approaches to a more sustainable way of living in the future with textiles as an ingredient. The key is collaboration: the universities participating in the project are reputable academic institutions and we all benefit from this type of cooperative project. It strengthens our reputation in areas such as art, architecture, and textile technology," explains Lars Hallnäs.

"The doctoral students have mainly been placed in their respective home universities, but the project also includes working for a long time at another university or private enterprise in Europe."

"Explaining ArcInTexETN in text is not easy. That's why, as the project concludes, among other things, we will produce a book in which the results of the doctoral students' individual research projects and collaborations are presented in picture form. It is important that the results of their research be made available to the public. It is not just a requirement from the EU, but a facilitator: everyone lives some way and somewhere, and everyone has to do so more sustainably," says Agneta Nordlund Andersson.

ArcInTexETN is part of the programme of Excellent Science in Horizon 2020 and is coordinated by the University of Borås. The project was one of the first Marie Skłodowska-Curie projects in Horizon 2020. The purpose of Horizon 2020 is to ensure that Europe produces world-class research and to remove the boundaries between research and private enterprise.

From ideas and thoughts to completed prototypes and models, together with companies, institutions of higher education, and each other, the doctoral students have explored ways to connect their research in innovative ways to achieve something bigger: a new perspective on a new way of life.

In the areas of ArcInTexETN in which the doctoral students collaborate, knowledge and understanding of each other's areas develops, contributing to the cross-fertilization of the disciplines. They are trained to find broad solutions to interdisciplinary problems. By working with researchers from other disciplines, it becomes necessary to create new ways of thinking and new questions to ask.

Jyoti Kapur is one of the doctoral students. Her particular area is "knitwear fashion design." Within ArcInTexETN, she is included in the architecture group. In her research project, she works with the smells of textiles, which creates new approaches.

"Exploring my own research topic from a bodily to a spatial perspective has been a journey of learning and understanding. In my research, I start with my own experiences, but together with my colleagues I have learned to ask the right questions in a new context. I'm constantly inspired by my colleagues, put simply," she says.

One of the biggest challenges of working in this way, she believes, is to find the balance between her own research and collaborating with others to find issues that span the entire area, in this case architecture.

3 specialisations, 15 doctoral students
The idea of ​​ArcInTexETN is to develop methods, approaches, and techniques for designing adaptable and responsive environments. The purpose is to combine three themes into three different directions: architecture, interiors, and the body. Five doctoral students have been linked to their respective orientations. Each doctoral student conducts independent research in a specific topic.

In meeting with researchers from other disciplines, common contact points have been found and opened the door for future collaborations.

"It is always difficult, but at the same time very rewarding, when researchers from different disciplines in the design area meet in collaboration. For us in the group, that challenge has been very fruitful. By finding touchpoints that are relevant to everyone in our varying disciplines, we have opened the door for several promising collaborations in the future."

It is precisely this kind of collaboration that is one of the objectives of ArcInTexETN, to act as a forum in which doctoral students are given an opportunity to find new questions, in both the academic sphere and in the private sector.

Orientation: Architecture

The five doctoral students who work in the field of architecture have focused on seeing how textile materials, combined with new and old manufacturing methods, can pave the way for new perspectives on housing, such as textiles that smell "like home," materials that create comfortable temperatures, synthetic biology, and living organisms in design.


Daniel Suarez, Universität der Künste, Berlin. Research Title: Augmented textile tectonics through Real-Time Human Machine collaboration.

Iva Resetar, Universität der Künste, Berlin. Research Title: Adaptive material systems for thermal comfort in architecture.

Marina Castan Cabrero, Royal College of Art, London. Research Title: Body-centered textile expressions for architectural design – Exploring Spatial Opportunities Inspired by the Interaction of Textile and Body Movement as a Way to Create New Architectural Expressions.

Jyoti Kapur, University of Borås. Research Title: Smells: Olfactive dimension in designing textile architecture.

Bastian Beyer, Royal College of Art, London. Research Title: Biodigital architectural design processes and manufacturing systems.

Exploring my own research topic from a bodily to a spatial perspective has been a journey of learning and understanding.

Jyoti Kapur

Orientation: Body

Here, the doctoral students look at how the body can be part of interiors and architecture through smart textiles "wearables," such as a library for textile sounds, how a curtain sounds, a new wardrobe appearance via an app, material that becomes stronger when weight is applied, 4D-printed shoes in textile for a perfect fit.

Vidmina Stasiulyte, University of Borås. Research Title: Aesthetics of the Invisible: Sonic Identity in the Field of Fashion Design.

Troy Nachtigall, Eindhoven University of Technology, Eindhoven. Research Title: Ultra Personalised Product Service Systems and the Negotiation of Product Features.

Angella Mackey, Philips Electronics Netherlands B.V. & Eindhoven University of Technology, Eindhoven. Research Title: Digital Technologies in Everyday Fashion Systems.

Ana Ines Rodrigues, Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh. Research Title: Auxetic Structures and Textiles – a Mutual Interaction.

Maike Schultz, Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh. Research Title: Investigating the Responses of the Human Brain to Visual Stimuli.


The project has helped me to grow as a doctoral student. In particular, I appreciate all my contacts within the Faculty and with other researchers.


Vidmina Stasiulyte

Orientation: Interiors

Interaction design is about how something is designed to fit what it is supposed to be used for, how you interact with it. It's also about your interiors when it comes to textile materials and structures, such as the potential of static electricity created by man and textiles, walls with roots, and growing in tablecloths, textiles that affect behaviour and create feelings.

Ana Piñeyro, Royal College of Art, London. Research Title: Animating Matter. Embedding kinetic capability in nylon monofilament through morphological transformation.

Svenja Keune, AB Ludvig Svensson, Kinna. Research Title: Farming Textiles: Transforming Textile Expressions by using Plants to Integrate Growth, Wilderness and Decay into Textile Structures for Interior.

Sara Lundberg, Vilnius Academy of Arts, Vilnius. Research Title: Body Forms of Fabric – Investigations on Forms of the Body through Fabric Structures.

Juste Peciulyte, Vilnius Academy of Arts, Vilnius. Research Title: On Interior Atmosphere Staging.

Ramyah Gowrishankar, Universität der Künste, Berlin. Research Title: Exploring Pro-static Textile Potentials for Energy-rich Interiors.


ArcInTexETN changed my life. Not only did I get a new job, new network, and a new country, but also in relation to how I live my life.

Svenja Keune


Text Marc Hermansson

Photo Henrik Bengtsson, Suss Wilén and the doctoral students themselves

Translation Eva Medin