THe competition for ideas for schools
to work with the heritage of wooden architecture
in Irkutsk
30 June — 30 September
The competition for ideas for schools to work with the heritage of wooden architecture was initiated by the Smart School Centre For Education System Design.

The competition aims to identify, design, introduce and popularize the ideas, forms and directions for the work of school teams that contribute to the preservation of the historical and cultural heritage of Irkutsk.

The competition for ideas is an educational and practical project about modern Irkutsk and the school in the city.

We are looking for exciting, unusual and action-oriented answers to the following questions
How can a school work with cultural heritage?
How can school students contribute to preserving the historical appearance of Irkutsk?
How can wooden architecture become a resource for the development of each student, the school, the city and the region?
How can the wooden building be made important and relevant?
Why wooden architecture? Because it has a historical and aesthetic value, because it is unique in terms of preservation in Irkutsk, because it is a way of life and a subject of disputes to the city community.

The procedure for the competition is determined by the Regulations on the competition.
Who can take part in the competition?
  • Architects, historians, local history experts, scientists, public figures who are professionally involved in solving the problem of preserving the cultural heritage
  • Active citizens concerned with the history of Irkutsk and its contemporary existence
  • Enthusiastic and active teachers, students and schoolchildren
Age, citizenship, profession or a place of permanent residence do not matter.

The following does matter:

  • to know and understand the project topic
  • to be eager to explore and design forms of work with the wooden heritage of the city of Irkutsk
  • to feel the need to share the results of work
    How could the concept of a school's activities fit into the heritage of wooden architecture in Irkutsk?
    The proposed program of work should focus on certain types of activities that schoolchildren can be engaged in when working with wooden architecture in Irkutsk. We consider the participants' vision of practical tasks and outcomes more important than the grace of the theory or history of the issue. A harmonious proportion of the vision of a perfect outcome and an understanding of "how this can be done" is welcomed.

    The practical aspect is also associated with the feasibility of the program. Who is interested in implementing the program? What resources are required at each stage of the project's implementation? Will financial support be needed? What conditions are needed to implement the program, could there be any alternatives? It is also important to understand how long it will take to achieve the perfect outcome in accordance with the proposed idea of work.

    What sustainable changes will occur after the project has been completed? In other words, what is the practical result of your project? How is it related to the educational outcomes of schoolchildren and to the historical and cultural environment of the city?

    We are certain that there are points of energy for both schoolchildren, historians, urban planners, other professionals, and just for the citizens in the city; there are possibilities for research work and professional growth. Forms of involving the townspeople in the activities with the wooden architecture is also an important criterion for assessing the competition ideas. As people of various age will take part in projects with wooden architecture and in the educational process, it will undoubtedly raise the awareness of citizens so that the program of work will potentially integrate opportunities.

    We consider it possible and important to understand the prospects for continuing work in this direction beyond the city – in the Irkutsk region.

    Our position is not to set any limits for the content of the competition ideas, but rather leave some room for your creativity. However, there are some essential criteria that should be complied with in the concepts submitted to the competition.
    Work evaluation criteria
    Compliance with the aims of the competition and the expected outcomes of the concept implementation
    Relevance of the outcomes to the educational activities of schools and citizens
    The focus on achieving a quality educational outcome
    The focus on the development of the city and the local community
    The focus on innovation of proposed solutions, technologies and methods
    It should be possible to replicate and scale up the products and project outcomes in other organizations
    Sustainability: the ideas should be viable after the end of the project
    A realistic budget
    Meta-subjectivity of the educational result: the outcome should be universal in relation to different subject disciplines allowing mastery of the universal ways of working with problems, knowledge, and symbols in various subject areas
    Clarity and consistency of presentation of the content of the concept
    Expected outcomes
    The implementation of the concept of school work with the heritage of wooden architecture of the city will:
    allow school students, teachers and others involved in the activities to go beyond the traditional view of the wooden heritage as objects of museumification and conservation
    allow schools to take a more active position in the public dialogue with the city and its inhabitants. The project principle of organizing the activities will facilitate the transition from short-term one-off projects to long-term programs ensuring the sustainability of results
    promote the school's use of a variety of forms of working both with the objects themselves (the wooden buildings) and with the area, residents of the city, local communities and organizations
    provide a timely and urgent response to the global request about the forms and directions of the school's work with the cultural heritage and help the transformation of the school into the open educational, innovative and social hub of the city
    The composition and procedure for the submission of entries
    An entry includes the application for participation in the competition and the proposed concept of the school activities on the heritage of wooden architecture in Irkutsk
    1. An application for participation in the competition is submitted by filling out the google form at

    2. The entry content is comprised of the concept of the school work with the heritage of wooden architecture in Irkutsk and is sent along with the application by attaching the file in a pdf format.
    The concept should contain the following sections:

    • the description of a concept
    • main stakeholders (students, teachers and others)
    • tasks assigned to each
    • the goals and objectives of the concept
    • the educational outcome
    • the stages of the concept implementation
    • the budget for the implementation of the concept

    Stages and terms of the competition
    Entries are submitted for the competition
    30 June — 30 September, 2018
    Selection stage (selecting the best applications by the Expert Council)
    1 — 14 October, 2018
    Announcement of the finalists
    15 October, 2018
    The main stage (experts advise the finalists, and the corrected and improved concepts are submitted to the Organizing Committee of the competition)
    15 — 31 October, 2018
    Selection of the winning concept by the Jury
    1-15 November, 2018
    Identification and announcement of the winner of the competition (on the competition website and on the website of the Baikal International Education Fair-2018)
    22-24 November, 2018
    The winner and finalists of the competition are awarded diplomas and commemorative signs. The best entries will be published on the Smart School website.

    In addition, the winner and finalists may be offered the opportunity to implement their concepts in Smart School beginning in September 2019.

    I am not from Irkutsk, can I take part in the competition?
    Yes, you can.
    Can employees of educational or other organizations participate independently in the competition?
    Yes, they can do that as a group participant. The application can be submitted either by an individual (the author) or by a group of individuals (by a team of authors). Legal entities cannot take part in the competition.
    Can collective entries be submitted?
    Yes, it is possible, even if all co-authors are from different organizations.
    How many entries can be submitted by one author?
    The number is unlimited, including as a co-author.
    What will the winner get?
    The winner will be awarded a diploma and commemorative signs; the best concept will be published on the Smart School website. In addition, the authors of the best works will be offered the opportunity to implement their concepts in Smart School, beginning in September 2019.
    What is the consultation with finalists at the main stage of the competition?
    The finalists will be advised by experts in order to improve their entries. After the consultation, finalists can submit their revised concepts by October 31, 2018.
    How will the works be evaluated?
    The submitted entries will be evaluated by the experts taking into account the criteria listed in the Regulation on the competition scoring from 0 to 4. The maximum number of points able to be awarded to each concept is 40.
    May fantasy be given free rein with possible formats and contents of the school's work with the cultural heritage?
    МWe do not limit your imagination in any way and do not set a clear framework, but do not forget about the feasibility criterion ;-)
    When and how will the concept be implemented?
    The winners will be given the opportunity to have the implementation of their concept included in the educational program as early as in the 2019/2020 academic year after the necessary documentation has been prepared together with the team of Smart School.
    Please address any questions related to the competition to the Organizing Committee of the competition (Kristina Valaitis-Vinober, Irina Koryukhina) at or use the feedback form