Monthly Archives: October 2014

Mind Maps for Architects and Urbanists

At TU Delft, students come from all over the world, and have been educated in different traditions of planning and design for the built environment. Instead of seeing this as a problem, we find this an excellent opportunity to learn from one another and to enrich our understanding of the challenges to achieve sustainable and fair cities.

But in order to work better together, we must clarify differences and find commonalities to build up a common language.

In order to do that, we draw mind maps.

A mind map is a graphic representation of a brain storm. Around a central concept (“the urbanist” or “the architect”), participants must draw connected ideas organically, unfolding them as much as possible.

This is done by writing keywords along the branches of a growing tree. It is important to:

  1. Use only one keyword at a time
  2. Make a logic connection between the branches and sprouts
  3. Make sure to unfold concepts as much as possible, drawing derived branches and sub-branches
  4. Use your graphic abilities to explain concepts also using icons and drawings
  5. Make your mind map as beautiful and interesting as possible (as you know, good communication is essential in Architecture and Urbanism)

Different from a brain storm, mind mapping offers the possibility to structure thoughts graphically and to unfold concepts and ideas in an organised way. Because ideas are graphically represented, they can be discussed more easily.

The ‘secret’ of mind mapping consists of the relationships constructed between concepts and ideas being unfolded and ‘spelled out’ explicitly. Drawing the relationships like the branches of a tree helps us visualize the organic relationship they have with each other.

In our case, we explore five basic aspects around the central concept;

  2. TOOLS


Please, watch a video to understand the “laws” of mind mapping:

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