Please Note: As a result of the economic impacts of COVID-19, we are sorry to announce that the CTBUH 2020 Student Research Competition, has to be put on hold until the 2021 calendar year. Entries submitted in 2020 will therefore be carried forward to participate in the 2021 program. If you have any questions, please contact [email protected].

CTBUH 2020 Student Research Competition

The Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat (CTBUH) is now accepting proposals for its 2020 Student Research Competition—culminating with an award of $20,000 to be recognized at the CTBUH 2020 International Conference, held in Singapore & Kuala Lumpur, from October 19–23, 2020. The goal of the 2020 Student Research Competition is to assist talented students, working in groups under the guidance of a professor, to focus on a relevant research question, and create an engaging output as a response. Research proposals should directly relate to the 2020 topic of “Sustainable Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat.” Proposals can come from any topic/discipline. It is up to the students to interpret the theme, and outline how their research will address it, including how the funds will be used to support the intended outcome. The ultimate objective of this award is to give students of any discipline the opportunity to conduct high-quality academic research on a topic they are particularly interested in, under the guidance of a professor.



Proposals are due by Saturday April 18, 2020 (12:00 p.m. CST). For any concerns or questions, please contact [email protected]


Please note: The Student Research Competition is open to students under the guidance of a professor, while the CTBUH International Research Seed Funding initiative is intended specifically for research professionals. It is therefore not possible to submit a proposal to both programs.


  • • February 18: Competition formally launched
  • • April 18: Submission deadline
  • • April 28–June 5: Judging period
  • • June 10: Decision communicated to winning team
  • • October 19–23: Winner announced at the 2020 Conference
  • • Late 2020 / Early 2021: Research project undertaken

Selection Committee & Criteria

The evaluation of proposals will be guided by the expert jury, with guidance from the funding sponsor. The jury reflects a group of tall building/urban experts from around the world as well as academics and university professors. The CTBUH reserves the right to reject all applications and grant no awards.


Submission Requirements / Criteria / Procedures

Full details of the Student Research Competition, including submission requirements, criteria, procedures, etc. can be found in the Award Brief document.

Past Student Research Competition Projects:

2019 Student Research Competition Funding Sponsor: 

Academic Professional: Jean-Pierre Chupin, Université de Montréal Skyscrapers as a Complex Response to Rising WatersStudent Researcher(s): Mandana Bafghinia, Université de Montréal
The Rebirth of the Skyscraper: Technical Advances, 1930–1975
2018 Student Research Competition Funding Sponsor:

Academic Professional: Patrick Loughran, Illinois Institute of Technology Student Researcher(s): Akram Maradni & John Paul, Illinois Institute of Technology
Curtain Wall Façade for Water Collection on Tall Buildings
2017 Student Research Competition Funding Sponsor:

Academic Professional: Gianni Bartoli, University of Florence Student Researcher(s): Andrea Giachetti, University of Florence
An Innovative Tall Building Façade to Achieve High Ventilation, Fire Safety, and Structural Performance
2016 Student Research Competition Funding Sponsor:

Academic Professional: Thomas Leslie, Iowa State University Student Researcher(s): Shawn Barron & Saranya Panchaseelan, Iowa State University
The Rebirth of the Skyscraper: Technical Advances, 1930–1975

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