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Laboratorio de Arquitecturas Andinas y Construcción con Tierra, Argentina

Presentation of the institution

The Laboratorio de Arquitecturas Andinas y Construcción con Tierra [Andean Architectures and Earthen Building Laboratory] is an academic space for research, training and technological engagement that forms part of the Instituto de Investigaciones sobre la Naturaleza y la Sociedad “Rodolfo Kusch”, of the Universidad Nacional de Jujuy, Argentina. From the conformation of a diverse work team, this space seeks to approach transdisciplinarily to the understanding of the production of habitat and architecture, together with the associated technologies, from the perspectives of the peasant-indigenous collectives, from a collaborative work and situated in the territorial challenges in which the Laboratory is based.

It is in its own facilities in the town of Tilcara, in the province of Jujuy, Argentina, a small town that is part of the region known as “Quebrada de Humahuaca”, which was incorporated into the UNESCO World Heritage List in 2003. In this way, the research group is in the same space in which it develops its different actions related to the knowledge and promotion of the safe use of earthen technologies, favouring cooperative projects with multiple local communities. Associated with this, in methodological terms the group has an approach based on ethnography and collaborative work with these local communities, both in terms of research and in terms of training and technological linkage. This approach is complemented by laboratory studies on earthen building materials, based on its own equipment.

Educational activities

The laboratory’s formation activities are carried out at different levels and with diverse groups of participants, using several pedagogical tools. Firstly, the institution has a very important task in doctoral studies within the scientific system, which currently involves the development of five simultaneous theses, in addition to two others that were completed in the last year. At the same time, the work is oriented towards teaching at the National University of Jujuy, in its sites located in the town of Humahuaca and different rural communities within the training in “Art and Architecture” in the career of Tourism.

Regarding local communities, the educational activities seek to question the usual models through collaborative strategies based on the existence of symmetrical knowledge between diverse actors, which is based on the ethnographic approach referred above. This implies that the action is oriented towards the generation of collective workshops for the exchange of experiences. Finally, in the last few years the laboratory has given different courses for graduate and postgraduate students on the knowledge of building techniques, their pathologies and also on anthropological approaches to architecture.

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Cite this blog post
AE&CC (2024, June 10). Laboratorio de Arquitecturas Andinas y Construcción con Tierra, Argentina. The UNESCO Chair. Retrieved June 15, 2024, from

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