The building of the International School of Debrecen received a prestigious award

  • 2020-05-08

The building of the International School of Debrecen (ISD), designed by BORD Architectural Studio, was voted among the best architectural designs of the world. The building, completed in the autumn of 2019, received the Golden Award in the Architecture Design category of A’Design Award and Competition.

A’Design Award is a prestigious design competition recognized around the world, which has brought together, for the past 11 years, the most talented designers of 180 countries working in the fields of architecture, graphic design, landscape architecture, as well as designers of furniture, fashion, jewellery, toys and musical instruments. This year there were nearly 8,500 entries to the competition in 110 different categories.

In 2020, the building of the International School of Debrecen received the Golden Design Award in Architectural Design, a popular category. This put the building among the world’s 40 best architectural projects this year.


The International School of Debrecen is an IB (International Baccalaureate) school with a capacity of 500 students. The student-centred philosophy of the school is organized around learning through discovery. The building, inaugurated in the autumn of 2019, is located in a suburban part of Debrecen, directly adjacent to the Nagyerdő (Great Forest), a Natura 2000 protected area extending over 1,300 hectares.

The architectural concept of the building is based on the shape of a circle, symbolizing protection, unity and community, which captures the essential spirit of the institution very well. In addition, it also organizes elements of the natural and the built environment into a symbolic unity, thereby showing a direction for the future.

How is this concept realized in the building itself? The classrooms, built in a pavilion-like arrangement, are located along the arc of a circle. The pathways leading to the educational gardens and the forest complete the circle concept, by way of the pedestrian pathways trodden into the forest by the children. The different functional units of the architectural mass are connected to each other like gears in a clockwork. This gives the code name of the competition: “Gearing”, which refers to the importance of cooperation and teamwork.

Further information on the building and its concept can be found in the design competition document.

We are proud to have contributed to the realization of this project enjoying international successes, and congratulate BORD Architectural Studio for the recognition.