The competition is sponsored by the International Council for Caring Communities (ICCC) in cooperation with the United Nations Programme for Human Settlements (UN-HABITAT) and United Nations Ageing Unit, Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA), Asia Pacific Exchange and Cooperation Foundation (APECF) and other partners.  The Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture (ACSA) endorses the competition.  The competition was first established in 1995 and winning entries exhibitions include in Chile for the Americas; Hungary for Central and Eastern Europe; Spain for the 2nd World Assembly on Ageing; China and Thailand for the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP); Ireland and Japan, and at United Nations Headquarters in New York in conjunction with the United Nations Commission for Social Development.


The Competition invites architecture students around the world to apply their creative talents toward developing solutions, which integrate older persons seamlessly into the fabric of the community and include them in all social, cultural, and productive activities.  This competition was founded by the late architectural historian Dr. Albert Bush Brown in 1994. It is typically held in conjunction with a concurrent of international conference held at the United Nations in New York dealing with “Caring Communities for the 21st Century:  Imagining the Possible”.


A Sleeping Giant is being awakened, “The Agequake” is here! Every month around the world over 1.2  million people turn 60 years old, with fastest growth in developing countries. The number of older persons, who are living in cities, towns, suburbs, and rural areas around the world, is increasing.   By the year 2030 the number of people over 60 will reach 1.4 billion.  In some developed countries by the year 2050 the number of older persons will out  number children (1-14) by 2:1.  These dramatic demographic shifts pose serious design and planning challenges.  Most communities are not prepared for a rapidly ageing population.  Therefore, it is useful for this competition to offer ideas, novel approaches and innovative concepts, which could inform the global search for solutions.  The goal is to find many ways of accommodating and integrating older people as full and productive members of their respective communities.


As an NGO (non-governmental organization) accredited to the United Nations, ICCC promotes cross-sectoral approaches to questions of ageing, encourages interchanges between young and old, and fosters connections between business, academia, government, NGOs and community organizations.  The competitions, conferences and publications sponsored by ICCC are all vehicles for raising awareness, for publicizing innovative projects and for stimulating new thinking about ways to meet the emerging needs an aging population. ICCC’s mission is to help community’s worldwide address the social, economic and cultural impact of aging populations in the design and planning for a better quality of life for all ages.


Submission entry form available on

Both undergraduate and graduate students of architecture are eligible to submit projects.  All submissions clearly identify whether the submission is as an individual or team of students.  All entries must be prepared by bona fide students currently enrolled in an academic program in architecture or in a related field. An affidavit of authorship is a mandatory component of submission.  No more than 3 entries may be submitted by any one school. r
Students are encouraged to submit an entry form electronically on or before June 1, 2012.  Send to International Council for Caring Communities at   All entry projects are due on for before August 8, 2012 mail to International Council for Caring Communities, 24 Central Park South, New York, NY 10019, USA. No entries will be received after August 8th, the judging of entries will take place mid-August.  Winning entries will be announced during the United Nations World Urban Forum, Sept. 3-7, Naples, Italy.

Because the competition is open to individuals as well as groups of students, there will be two First place awards of $10,000 USD, two second place winners of $5,000 USD and two third place winners at $2,500 each USD.  At least three more projects in each category will receive honorable mentions.  All other completed submissions will be recognized with a certificate of acknowledging a student’s participation.

While some of the needs of older persons are universal, most take vastly different forms based on such differences as culture, political system, social structure, geographic region and demographic context.  The instructor and or students may adapt the competition guidelines to reflect the situation in their specific region.
The design competition program and the respective submissions must address a number of key concerns.  They include the following issues critical to the success of societal integration of older people:
Key Issues include:
Location:  Strategic placement of facilities for older people within walking distance where older persons can contribute and be engaged.
Connectivity:  Establishment of physical and possibly electronic connectivity to amenities and services.

Symbiosis: Matching of talents and interests of older people and needs of society.

Dignity: Uphold and preserve the personal rights and personal domain regardless of any reduction in faculties.

Access: Availability of essential services such as healthcare, food, educational facilities, recreational areas, social services and transportation.

Security: Provide a sense of safety in physical and psychological terms. 
Overview: Project Scope:
1 - Identify and analyze an existing neighborhood or district. The context may be either urban, suburban or rural, which contains older adults and may include aspects of information and communication technology (ICT).
2 – Building or intervention, which acts as a catalyst to address the key issues.
3 – Illustration of how the proposed intervention becomes an integral component of the existing social fabric.
4 – How to encourage sustainable design that promotes sustainable life.
Projects may propose solutions at a variety of scales that consist of a building or complex that addresses the key issues and illustrates innovative approaches to the integration of older people in society.  Of particular importance are ideas that make use of the experience, talents and interests of older people in the service of society. 
The design solutions should aim to foster a community that incorporates older persons as essential components of the social fabric.  Different age groups should be imaginatively intertwined.  Opportunities should be sought to link various age groups in mutually beneficial arrangements.  The design should assume a community in which approximately 20% are older persons (over 60).  The design also should incorporate the necessary infrastructure to enrich the life of old and young alike.  The design of the facilities, communities or neighborhoods should engage the issue of ageing place rather than moving to ghettos for old people. The solutions should address how the productive engagement of older persons can enrich communities and improve the quality of life for all.

A local context needs to be provided for all projects.  The local context can either be rural, suburban or urban.  Based on an analysis of a real situation, the context should provide a clear framework for the design concept and its aesthetic interpretation.  Students are encouraged to collect and portray information on current neighborhood conditions and the specific needs of the elderly. Documentation should include land uses, vehicular and pedestrian circulation, housing stock, cultural conditions, educational opportunities, places of worship, civic institutions, commercial establishments, retail locations, social services, health facilities, public spaces and other uses of note to older persons.  The analysis and its succinct documentation will allow the jury to understand the conditions to which the design solutions are responding.


Projects must be submitted on DVD and include:  four 22” x 34” or A1 boards that can be printed at high resolution for final judging.  (Approximate resolution for each board is 6600 pixels x 10200 pixels at 300 pixels per inch.)  Horizontal organization of vertically oriented boards is mandated.  Also provide a one-page statement in English, summarizing intent, concept, solution and key programmatic and architectural features.  All notations on boards must be in English to facilitate understanding by the jury. 
Board One should present the analysis of the existing neighborhood.  Suggested scale 1”-40’ or 1:500). 
Boards Two and Three should describe the design solution with relevant plans, sections, elevations, suggested scale (1/8” = 1’ or 1:100) and three-dimensional images of the project.  Images may include perspectives, sketches or photographs of three-dimensional models and renderings. 
Board Four should be used to further illustrate the design concept in vignettes, sketches, perspectives or detailed photographs of models.  The purpose of this board is to convey the ideas to lay audiences; it should make the ideas come alive and make them imageable.


The Jury: 
An international jury will consist of the following: distinguished academics, architects, gerontologists, urban planners and U.N. representatives.

 Notification of Winners:
Following the jury deliberations, winners will be notified electronically by e-mail.  An acknowledgement will also be sent to their respective Institutions.  Other competition entrants will be notified of the results of the competition and are encouraged to attend the “Urban Futures: New Mindsets” Conference and Exhibition at United Nations Headquarters, 2 October 2012 free of charge.

Ownership of Entries and Publication Rights:
All entries become the property of the International Council for Caring Communities (ICCC).  ICCC reserves the right to publish or use in any way, any or all entries, with appropriate acknowledgment of the author or authors.  Entrants are encouraged to make record of their entry prior to submission.
 Identification of Entries:
In addition to the digital submission, all submitters must send hardcopy identification presentation materials in a sealed envelope to the address below.
Each envelope must contain student name or names, home telephone number, e-mail address and student identification number of each participant, as well as the name, faculty advisor, full address, e-mail, or fax number of institution. For group entries, each student participant must submit a separate sheet with relevant information. In addition, also provide a signed copy of the Affidavit of Originality, as well as a small format (half size of the original boards) color print of the submission.  Do not put your name or any other identification anywhere on the front of your boards and do not use your name anywhere in your project.  Any breach of anonymity will result in disqualification.

Project Submission Requirements:
 Entries must be sent to:
International Council for Caring Communities, 24 Central Park South, New York, NY 10019
All entries must be submitted on or before August 8, 2012



Affidavit of Originality
The undersigned Entrant(s) swear(s) that his/her or their entry, submitted to ICCC competition, was designed and drawn solely by the named entrant or entrants.  The competitor(s) also understand(s) that if it is determined that he/she or they did not design and draw the entry without aid (except the advice of faculty members), the prize award shall be revoked and the entrant(s) may be subject to further legal action.

ENTRANT(S):  _____________________________________
INSTITUTION: _____________________________________
DATE: _____________________________________________