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Call for Applications

An off-site programme run by the École des Arts Décoratifs at Nontron, in Dordogne (southwest France).

The Rural Environment Design programme offered by the École des Arts Décoratifs takes place off-site, in Nontron, Dordogne. It focuses on the use of design in developing rural areas and responds to localised issues in close collaboration with actors in the field.

The course is open to six to eight students. It takes place over the university year, from September to June, and is based on three immersive research projects proposed by local authorities, institutions, businesses, nonprofits and individuals, so that students can tackle real-life issues. The projects cover topics that are a priority for the area but also likely to concern the rural world in general.

The three 2022-2023 projects will cover:

–         the identity of rural areas;

–         water uses;

–         a topic of general interest proposed by a company and/or relating to arts and crafts and/or to actors operating in the social and solidarity economy.

These issues will be addressed locally with a view to applying the design responses to other rural areas.

A presentation will be organised at the end of the year before a jury comprising the project sponsors, the head of the École des Arts Décoratifs, programme advisers and guest specialists. The Pôle Expérimental des Métiers d’Art (local experimental arts and crafts centre) will coordinate activities locally and be able to show the resulting work. Partnerships will also be possible with the design and arts and crafts residency.

The programme will have multiple roles, operating as a residency, laboratory, research unit and incubator:

–         as a residency since it offers accommodation, a collective workshop, maintenance and production grant, and an environment that fosters project research and development. Successful candidates will live on site and have access to the infrastructure and technical facilities they need, to be provided by several partner organisations;

–         as a laboratory thanks to a focus on experimentation and social innovation;

–         as a research unit since it studies the development of hands-on projects in response to specific local issues or in partnership with local organisations (nonprofits, teaching establishments, etc.);

–         as an incubator since it allows students to test out and consolidate professional projects.

The programme also aims to inform rural actors about design practices.

The post-master degree is headed by Florence Doléac, designer and teacher on the Product Design master’s degree at the École des Arts Décoratifs, with the support of Patrick Renaud, designer and adviser on the Product Design master’s degree. The course also benefits from contributions by guest artists and theoreticians (geographers, sociologists, anthropologists, rural environment specialists, etc.).

Each participant receives a grant of €8,000 divided up as follows : €6,000 maintenance grant, €1,000 expenses grant (petrol and various costs) and €1,000€ production grant for minor equipment costs. An extra budget can be made available to cover other production costs.


Application procedure for the 2022-2023 session

The programme is aimed at candidates aged under 31 on 31 December 2022, who are interested in rural issues, hold a master’s degree (in design, art, architecture, human and social sciences, management, engineering, etc.) on 1st September or can show proof of professional experience of at least three years.

The digital application form comprises:

–         cover letter;

–         CV;

–         copies of the applicant’s identity card and higher education diplomas;

–         a portfolio of projects no more than 10 pages long.

Applications must be submitted no later than midnight on 20 May 2022 via our online platform:



Short-listed candidates will be invited to attend an interview on 27 or 28 June with a jury made up of the head of the École des Arts Décoratifs and post-master degree advisers.

Evaluation criteria:

–         an interest in rural issues;

–         autonomy;

–         high quality output;

–         ability to organise and experience.

Successful candidates will be admitted to the École des Arts Décoratifs and will have to pay the submission fee (€438  in 2021) as well as the student life and campus contribution (€92 in 2021).

You can find a description of the post-master degree, programme and current projects on our dedicated website:


If you need any further information, please send an email to: mondes.ruraux@ensad.fr

The Rural Environment Design programme is a course created and run by the École des Arts Décoratifs in partnership with the town of Nontron, Périgord Nontronnais local authority and the Pôle Expérimental des Métiers d’Art.

It is supported by the Ministry of Culture, Crédit Agricole Charente Périgord’s Fondation Agir and the Conseil Développement Durable du Périgord Vert.


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KCUA International Office.

KCUA International Office.

KCUA International Office.

KCUA International Office.