A place of peace in the bustling city

  • September 15, 2017
A place of peace in the bustling city

Sofia Singler wins honorable mention for her design in an international architecture competition.

A Gates Cambridge Scholar has won an honorable mention in an international architecture competition.

Sofia Singler [2016] and her design partner Luka Pajovic won the mention in the competition organised by ArchMedium, a European architectural competition organisation for their proposal 'Templum Sapientiae'.

Sofia began collaborating with Luka, a 2017 architecture graduate from Cambridge, during the first year of her PhD. The competition was for a contemporary non-denominational chapel in central Rome.

The competition brief was to rethink spiritual and worship spaces in the city of Rome, to create "a place of encounter, a space for dialogue and hope for peace in a complex world". 

The brief stated: "Nowadays with the vertiginous lifestyle of ever-changing cities, it is even more necessary to have a space where you can reflect and be calm. In a delicate European context, we propose to rethink spaces of worship as a place of introversion in the city with no association to any religion. A new place disconnected from the city and connected with the will of the people and the Rome of the 21st century."

The site chosen for the building was the historic Via Giulia of Rome, one of the most important streets in Rome and one directly affected by demolitions carried out during the era of Mussolini. 

The brief was highly relevant to Sofia's PhD research on modern post-war religious architecture and provided her with the opportunity to test some of her theoretical hypotheses and conclusions on contemporary religious space through design.

Sofia Singler

Sofia Singler

  • Alumni
  • Finland
  • 2016 PhD Architecture
  • Pembroke College

My research examines how the Finnish modernist Alvar Aalto’s ecclesiastical oeuvre can enrich our understanding of the relationship between religion and modern architecture, and revise misleadingly uncomplicated assumptions concerning their mutual exclusivity.

Previous Education

University of Cambridge
Yale University

Latest News

Gut bacteria links to immune responses in the brain

Bugs in the gut may hold the key to protective immune measures in the brain which could have implications for diseases such as Parkinson’s and multiple sclerosis, according to a new study led by Gates Cambridge Scholar Zachary Fitzpatrick. A paper based on his PhD research has recently been published in Nature and it highlights […]

Exploring the social barriers to take-up of green technology

How can rural communities be encouraged to take up green energy solutions? A new study co-authored by Gates Cambridge Scholar Ramit Debnath investigates the social barriers to uptake of household appliances fuelled by green energy. Based on research on more than 14.5K households in rural communities in Rwanda, the study, published in Renewable Energy, found […]

A new technique to decode the way the nervous system works

How do the billions of neurons in the human brain work together to give rise to thought or certain types of behaviour? A new study led by Gates Cambridge Alumnus Eviatar Yemini [2007] outlines a colouring technique, known as NeuroPAL (a Neuronal Polychromatic Atlas of Landmarks), which makes it possible – at least in experiments […]

An innovative approach to plant protection

Shauna-Lee Chai is passionate about working on wicked problems, about using her entrepreneurial skills to improve the lives of others and about seeing the big picture, something she says her experience as a Gates Cambridge Scholar contributed to. Her expertise is in invasive plant species and for three years she was Board Director of the […]