PhD application (Harvard and Columbia)


Dear colleagues,

While I've already read other Ph.D. threads on this forum, I'm still in need of some advice. To start of, here's a bit of background: I have an MSc in architecture and urban design from a Croatian university, a year of study at ETSAM (Madrid), and 3 years of professional experience as an architect and a project leader on international projects (Spain, Netherlands, Switzerland, Italy, China).

The tendency now is to pursue a Ph.D. in architectural theory at either Harvard or Columbia, mostly due to their current faculty members (Hays, Blau, Frampton, and Wigley) and some of the relatively recent work I've read. Currently, I'm preparing a writing sample, which is an excerpt from my thesis on Aureli's Stop-City in the context of Split, Croatia. Since there's a page limit (20 Harvard, 30 Columbia), I was wondering whether accompanying diagrams and pictures are a good idea. If the limit is 30 pages, do you think Columbia would take a 20-page writing sample as a negative thing? 

The statement of purpose seems like the most crucial part of the application. The topic I'm covering might come off as too philosophical, and I'm not sure to what extent it should be specific (location, practical implementation, etc.). In short, the statement is converging from post-criticality, labor, and economy into the possibility of autonomy of architecture to regain a more administrative role within the hierarchy of spatial design and to make critical theory operative.

How big of a role does the GPA play in the admissions? How long should be the CV? I'm still not managing to put it in 2 A4 pages concisely, but perhaps I'm trying to be too meticulous about it.

I'd be very grateful for any useful advice. Thank you.

P.S. Excuse my English, it's 4:30 AM here.

Nov 25, 19 11:18 pm

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