2012 Jury Member

The Rolex Awards for Enterprise

Location: Switzerland

Gerhard Schmitt
Switzerland, Born 1953

Gerhard Schmitt is recognized throughout Europe and Asia as the driving force behind visionary projects carried out on behalf of the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich (ETH) in Switzerland and Singapore.


A professor of information architecture at ETH and senior vice president for international institutional affairs, Schmitt currently heads the Singapore — ETH Centre for Global Environmental Sustainability which has launched its first trans-disciplinary project, the Future Cities Laboratory, a global think tank for the sustainable development of new and existing cities.

“Making urban structures environmentally and economically sustainable, as well as liveable, is one of today’s great challenges,” he says.

Another of Schmitt’s major projects, conceived of in 2003, is ETH — Zurich’s Science City, a model university campus and urban centre where science, society and industry interact. Schmitt received the 2010 European Cultural Award for Science for this groundbreaking concept.

Since obtaining a master’s degree in architecture from the University of California, Berkeley, in 1981 and a Ph.D in engineering from Munich’s Technical University in 1983, Schmitt has focused his research on computer-aided architectural design (CAAD) and the development of intelligent design support systems using artificial intelligence methods. He has taught at universities in Europe and the U.S. and written several influential books on the use of information technology in architecture.

Other 2012 Jury Members