The workshop Digital Design and Production in Architecture, organized by INDEXLAB – Politecnico di Milano, has the objective to offer a new vision on architecture and its manufacturing methodologies.
As 20th Century’s architecture focused on mass production and serial repetition of its components, today’s one will be strongly characterized by varied and unique elements, industrially produced through advanced CNC fabrication machines. At the same time, the rise of novel programming platforms for design make it possible to generate processes and algorithms that allow the control of form and technological aspects from the first conceptual stages of the design till the construction phase. This makes possible to integrate aesthetics and functionality, structural resistance and energy performance within one coherent design process.
In the process of definition such “design to production” workflow, both fabrication and material limits and potentials play a key role in generating competitive logical construction systems. Robots and CNC machinery contribute to the redefinition of design methodologies and construction processes, transferring most of manufacturing from the building site to industrial production, where advanced components, integrating structure and envelope, can be designed and fabricated into complex solutions with high aesthetic and functional value.
The workshop aims at bringing together visionary companies, advanced designers and innovation-oriented students to envision new synergies between academic research, architectural practice and industrial production.

From Tuesday July 3rd To Friday July 13th , 2018

Digital Design and Production in Architecture

The course will focus on digital and robotic fabrication methodologies, with the final aim of designing and fabricating full-scale mock-ups and installations, integrating innovative materials and efficient “design to production” parametric routines. The course aims at providing the participants with relevant skills to design complex geometries – through algorithmic modeling – and define innovative digital production methods for architecture and the construction industry.


  • Understand the potential of digital fabrication technologies and robotics for architectural construction
  • Learn advanced geometric optimization concepts and their interrelation with specific manufacturing techniques and robotic end-effectors
  • Acquire hands-on experience with the operation of robotic arms for fabrication of custom architectural components
  • Understand a complete Design to Production workflow for the realization of a full-scale pavilion manufactured with digital and robotic fabrication technologies


  • Grasshopper
  • HAL robotics
  • Kangaroo
  • Galapagos

    • Industrial Robots
    • Milling, contouring
    • Robotic 3D printing
    • Pick and place
    • Hot-wire cutting
    • Thermoforming
    • Resin Transfer Molding
    • Sensing and actuation
    • Motion sensing


    Politecnico di Milano houses cutting-edge technology for the fabrication of physical prototypes, including CNC milling, water-jet, laser cutting, 3D printing facilities and industrial robots. At Indexlab we offer tools to perform complex manipulations and innovative manufacturing processes on natural materials, metals, polymers, cement-based materials, composites.

    Robotic 3D printing

    Milling, contouring

    Hot-wire cutting


    Pick and place


    Sensing and actuation

    Motion sensing


    Indexlab workshop tutors are world-renowned leading experts in the field of digital construction, computational design and robotic fabrication. 


    Politecnico di Milano is one of the most technologically advanced universities in the world.

    Research is conducted within all faculties, and cross-disciplinary study is key to its methodology.

    The town of Lecco is surrounded by mountains of extraordinary beauty

    The Polimi Lecco Campus is easily accessible.

    It enjoys the strategic location of Milan in the European network of air, road and railway connections.


    INDEXLAB – Politecnico di Milano, Polo territoriale di Lecco. Via Gaetano Previati 1/c, 23900 Lecco


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    If you would like to know more or if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us at


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