Architecture at the Edge Design Lab Bursaries: Open Call for Applications

Architecture at the Edge Design Lab Bursaries: Open Call for Applications 2024

Architecture at the Edge, in partnership with Galway Culture Company, are delighted to announce an open call for three bursary awards to support creative practitioners with an interest in championing young people and their ideas and help them realise the potential for a better designed built environment.

Applications are open to individual practitioners and/or collectives living in or from Galway City or County, including but not limited to artists, architects, makers, designers, film producers and creatives from all disciplines. 

This is an opportunity designed to support practitioners with an interest in co-designing projects with young people and consider the consequential aspects of making across craft, construction, architecture and design.

In addition to any specific areas that applicants would like to develop, possible lines of enquiry include:

  • Architecture which demonstrates the inseparability of design from planetary resources 
  • The aesthetic and construction methods found in the wider landscape of the west of Ireland resulting from the scarcity of available material.
  • How architecture design process’ and making can respond to environmental challenges, to support restorative and sustainable futures. 

There are three bursary awards of €3,000 each.


The Project

Since Design Lab began in 2021, we have always sought to train and skill up others with the knowledge, experience and confidence to develop their own build projects with young people related to play, architecture and young people’s/children’s use of space.

Design Lab invites young people to be part of a creative design process that results in a real design for a space or place to build. We aim to bring together disciplines that perhaps do not always intersect: artists, architects, and other makers to enable more young people to be confident about influencing and shaping their built environment.

The bursary will support individuals to work with young people aged between 14 – 22 years old to develop projects which are tangible demonstrations of how our young people can make a positive contribution to shaping better places in Galway City and County, and to demonstrate first-hand how young people can directly shape their world.


The bursary award will consist of:

  • A grant of €3000 to cover all associated project expenses
  • Mentoring, advice and contacts from Architecture at the Edge and partnering schools and/or organisations


Eligibility Criteria:

To be eligible for these bursaries, you must be either living in or from Galway City or County. 


The recipients of the award will be invited to undertake the following work:

  • To conceptualise, programme and produce new cultural work for the Design Lab program 
  • To coordinate and project manage that work
  • To manage monies effectively and within budget for that work 
  • To undertake appropriate event management and logistics work
  • Document observations to be published via the Architecture at the Edge social media channels
  • Provide a final report outlining main learning outcomes from the project
  • Participate in a public event at the Architecture at the Edge Festival 2024 where the project will be presented


How to Apply

To apply for the Design Lab bursary, please submit the following;

  • CV
  • A selection of your recent work, demonstrating your creative practice (jpeg/ pdf /word doc files only please)
  • A  proposal for the project that you would potentially like to produce through working with young people on the Design Lab program (max 300 words)
  • Statement that outlines your ambitions and use of the award and how it will benefit your creative practice (max 200 words)
  • A plan to document the project, e.g. film, sketchbook, audio or video recordings (max 200 words)
  • Provide an outlined budget which must include any technical equipment that you might need, including quotes (where applicable) to support your budget

We also welcome video submissions addressing the sections above. Any video should be no longer than 5 minutes, clearly structured according to the headings above, and accompanied by a written CV.

Submissions should not exceed 5MB in size and should be emailed to with the subject line ‘Design Lab/Galway Culture Company Bursary Award’ by 16:00 (GMT) on Wednesday 22 May 2024.

Architecture at the Edge recognises the positive value of a diverse production team reflective of our shared built environment. We welcome and encourage applications from people of all genders, backgrounds and abilities. Applicants need not have gone to university or be professionally qualified. Applicants must have an interest in architecture, urbanism and the built environment. 


Selection and Jury

The selection panel will be formed by members of the bursaries advisory board including:

  • Frank Monahan, Director, Architecture at the Edge
  • Marilyn Gaughan-Reddan, Chief Executive, Galway Culture Company

Shortlisted applicants will be invited for an interview (either in person or via video conference) in the week starting 03 June 2024. Successful applicants will be notified by 07 June 2024.


Frequently Asked Questions

Who can apply to the bursary programme? 

Anyone with an interest in architecture and the built environment who is based in, or from Galway City or County.

Do applicants have to be architecture, art and design students or architects? 

No, applicants do not have to have gone to university or be professionally qualified, and can have training in any specific discipline.

Are successful applicants paid for their work? 

The €3,000 bursary is to be self-directed by the recipients –  how this is spent is up to the recipient with advanced sanction from Architecture at the Edge. AATE encourages the recipients to consider using some of their budget to pay themselves a small fee.

What can the new cultural work for the Design Lab 2024 Program be? 

The applicant determines what this cultural work is, with a mixture of creative outputs encouraged, and could include exhibition, series of in-situ events, performance, a film, an 1:1 built installation – anything related to the built environment!

*Please note other proposed activities as a legacy or extension of the project will be funded separately at the discretion of Architecture at the Edge.

If your application is successful, you will have to ensure that you have suitable child-safeguarding policies and procedures in place in line with Architecture at the Edge Child Protection and Welfare Policy and Procedures.

For more information, please see the Children First section of the Tusla website at

We are very excited to launch this open call and look forward to receiving your applications. 


About Design Lab

Design Lab is a unique and exciting hands-on education program that invites students with an interest in design, construction  and technical subjects to not only learn about architecture and urbanism, but to take part in and guide the design and build process from start to finish. 

Design Lab seeks to create the conditions, expertise and network to enable young people to directly help shape their built environment.  The programme involves hands-on designing and making using real-life process and collaborating with leading practitioners and current students in the field. It enables and empowers each student to participate in a genuine creative, design process that results in real design proposition for a space or place. First developed in partnership with Matt + Fiona, the Design Lab program was named as a finalist in not one but two categories at the #InspireFutureGenerations Awards 2023 organised by Thornton Education Trust, (@thorntoneducat1).


Application and Programme Timeline

  • Wednesday 10th April 2024 – Open Call for Design Lab bursaries launched
  • Wednesday 22 May 2024  – Open Call for Design Lab bursaries closes at 16:00
  • Invitations issued to shortlisted participants (either in person or via video conference) in the week starting 03 June 2024
  • Successful applicants will be notified by 07 June 2024
  • June – September 2024 – Production time
  • Friday 27th September  – Sunday 06th October – AATE Festival 2024