Prof. Achim Menges appointed Max Planck Fellow at MPI-IS

June 27, 2024 /
MPI-IS, University of Stuttgart

A. Menges (ICD)

Strengthening Stuttgart's cutting-edge research into the planning and building of the future: the world-renowned architecture professor Achim Menges from the University of Stuttgart will establish a new research group entitled Intelligent Construction and Building Systems at the Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems from 1 July 2024.

Driving force behind the IntCDC Cluster of Excellence

The Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems (MPI-IS) in Stuttgart has appointed Prof. Achim Menges as a Max Planck Fellow. The MPI-IS and the University of Stuttgart are thus strengthening their joint research. The fellowship will begin on 1 July 2024 with the establishment of a new research group.

Achim Menges is a professor for architecture, taking an entirely new approach to solving the pressing social, environmental and economic challenges facing building construction. He heads the Institute for Computational Design and Construction (ICD) at the University of Stuttgart. Menges is a driving force behind and the spokesperson for the university's Cluster of Excellence Integrative Computational Design and Construction for Architecture (IntCDC), of which the MPI-IS is a partner and which is the only DFG-funded Cluster of Excellence for architecture and civil engineering in Germany.

New approaches for the buildings of tomorrow

Meanwhile, the Max Planck Fellow programme aims to promote cooperation between outstanding university professors and Max Planck researchers. In parallel to his duties at the University of Stuttgart, Achim Menges will set up and lead a new research group on Intelligent Construction and Building Systems at the MPI-IS. Menges' time as a Max Planck Fellow will run for five years.

“I am very much looking forward to starting my fellowship and establishing a research group on “Intelligent Construction and Building Systems”, which will further strengthen the successful collaboration between MPI-IS and the University of Stuttgart in the context of our Cluster IntCDC”, says Achim Menges. “Our research will contribute to the development of new approaches to the design and construction of the built environment, which faces multiple environmental, technological and cultural challenges.”

Professor of Architecture Achim Menges

Another exciting area of modern robotics

“We are thrilled to welcome Prof. Menges to MPI-IS and to further expand our research portfolio into yet another exciting area of modern robotics”, says Christoph Keplinger, Managing Director of the MPI-IS in Stuttgart and Director of the Robotic Materials Department. Katherine J. Kuchenbecker, Director of the MPI-IS Haptic Intelligence Department, adds, “I am delighted that our Max Planck Fellow nomination of Achim Menges was approved so that we can deepen the collaborative research we have been pursuing together in recent years, both within and outside of IntCDC”.


Research of high social relevance

Achim Menges is known for his interdisciplinary research on digital design methods and robotic manufacturing processes for more resource-efficient and sustainable building construction. His area of research is particularly relevant to society, as there is a significant demand for new construction worldwide. Examples include robotically wound, long-span and highly material-efficient fibre structures, digitally fabricated lightweight timber building systems that can be adapted to different construction tasks, and adaptive 3D-printed façade elements that do not require mechatronics or human intervention.

Achim Menges, born in Mannheim in 1975, studied at TU Darmstadt and at the Architectural Association School of Architecture in London. He has been a professor at the University of Stuttgart since 2008. There he founded the Institute for Computational Design and Construction (ICD) in 2009 and established a then unique and now globally visible research activity on digital design methods and robotic manufacturing processes for civil engineering. From 2009 to 2015, Menges was also a visiting professor at Harvard University in the USA. In 2013, he co-founded the interdisciplinary master's programme Integrative Technologies and Architectural Design Research (ITECH) at the University of Stuttgart. According to a ranking conducted by Stanford University and Elsevier, in 2023, Achim Menges was again the world's second most cited researcher in the field of architecture. He is also recipient of the 2023 Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz Prize, considered by many the most important research prize in Germany. It is the first time that the prize has been awarded to an architect.

To the top of the page