In celebration of architecture and design criticism, ArchiNed and Design Platform Rotterdam have set up the Pruys-Bekaert Programme. The aim of this programme is to stimulate the art of critical writing in design and architecture in the Low Countries as a way of establishing a written dialogue between designers, critics and ‘the wider public’.
The project centres on the Simon Mari Pruys Prize for design criticism and the Geert Bekaert Prize for architecture criticism. The programme also features lively talk shows, an interactive public debate, and an intensive writing workshop for designers.

The Simon Mari Pruys Prize for design criticism and the Geert Bekaert Prize for architecture criticism are awarded alternately every other year for excellent examples of written criticism in the fields of design and architecture in the Low Countries that promote a vibrant design culture.

Terms and conditions for participation
– Participation is open to anybody who has published an article about an aspect of design or architecture culture (in the broadest sense of the word). Articles should be in Dutch or English.
– Authors can submit their own articles, or other people can nominate articles. (The organizers will contact the authors of nominated texts.)
– Maximum of 3 submissions per author.
– The articles must have been published between 1 October 2011 and 6 December 2013 (in print or online).
– Texts should be between 1,000 and 4,000 words long. This length is a guideline, not an absolute imperative.
– A chapter of a book may be considered an article.

An expert jury will nominate a maximum of six texts, three works of architecture criticism and three of design criticism. These texts will be published on the website The authors of the winning texts will be the recipients of honour, fame and prize money, and their texts will be published on ArchiNed, on the Design Platform Rotterdam website, and in Dots Magazine.

Question: Does the author have to be Dutch?
Answer: No, the author’s nationality is irrelevant.

Question: Can an article about a foreign project be exemplary in the field of architecture in the Low Countries?
Answer: Yes, it can.

Question: Can submitted articles focus more on general themes in architecture and design rather than on specific places or objects?
Answer: Yes, they can, as long as the theme addressed is or was relevant to debate within the profession in the Low Countries.

Texts can be submitted in digital form only (PDF file, A4 size), from 1 October to 6 pm on 6 December 2013, to this email address:

The winners of the Simon Mari Pruys Prize for design criticism and of the Geert Bekaert Prize for architecture criticism will be announced at a festive event in the spring of 2014.


The jury for the Simon Mari Pruys Prize for design criticism consists of:

Frederike Huygen
(Journalist, chair of the Design History Foundation)

Dingeman Kuilman
(Former director of Premsela, chair of the Sikkens Foundation, teacher at the AOG School of Management)

Louise Schouwenberg
(Writer, Head Master Material Utopias vh Sandberg Instituut; Head Master Contextual Design and co-Head Master Curating and Writing at Design Academy Eindhoven)


The jury for the Geert Bekaert Prize for architecture criticism consists of:

Marieke Berkers
(Independent researcher, editor of Blauwe Kamer)

Christophe Van Gerrewey
(Critic, writer and scientific researcher at the Department of Architecture and Urban Planning at Ghent University. The title of his doctoral degree is ‘Architectural criticism 1950 – 2000. Theories and history of architecture via The Collected Writings of Geert Bekaert’.)

Arjen Oosterman
(Editor in chief of Volume, guest tutor at Amsterdam Academy of Architecture)

Eireen Schreurs
(Critic, partner at SUBoffice architects in Rotterdam, tutor at the Faculty of Architecture at TU Delft)

Ed Taverne
(Emeritus professor of the history of architecture at the University of Groningen)