MD Journal

edited by
Alfonso Acocella

MD Journal


The third issue of MD Journal aims to investigate expressive, technical and innovative opportunities offered to design by the application of algorithms (evolutionary algorithms, EA) during the various phases of the product development process. This approach, called algorithmic design, generative design, computational design or parametric design, is a promising field of intersection between design, technology and mathematics.
Through a parametric approach and digital manufacturing technology, it’s possible to plan and produce objects which are “grown” with logic and processes guided by code, used as a tool to manage the flows of information, parameters and relationships. The evolution of software and the exponential increase of computing power available to designers can produce morphologies, structures and patterns which evoke the complexity of biological forms. Layered, honeycombed, porous and intersecting structures, often generated through the explicit transfer of algorithms drawn from scientific studies in the field of biology, are realised according to growth processes which, analogous to their natural counterparts, are made for addition or removal, engaging a type of logic that is completely different from conventional planning and production tools.
They’re part of a new generation of tools, as Bernard Cache stated, through which objects are no longer thought up and designed, but rather “calculated” through processes which are also the subject of design.

The development of specific software environments and increasingly accessible programming languages, created for parametric design, offers designers, architects and artists a chance to use methodologies and tools without the advanced programming and scripting skills required by generative design in the past. The panorama of parametric design thus opens to new forms of technological democratisation, forms in which open pathways, often based on the criteria of sharing via open source, take advantage of the land of exchange which is the internet and by social networking sites. It’s a revolution which fascinates young designers in particular, given the increase in expressive opportunities.
Beyond the repercussions for aesthetic and formal research and on cutting-edge experimentation, it’s important to understand the additional lines of development this type of technology can offer to design and production, both mass-produced/industrial and small-scale, and the influences it could have on lifestyles and social expression.
It will also be important to consider how training in the field of design can supply the multidisciplinary skillset needed to understand and monitor relationships between design, geometry, programming, mathematics and biology.

This call for papers arises from the need to deal with the phenomenon in-depth and even critically, in order to understand its formal-linguistic, technical, environmental and economic implications with the objective of gathering experiences and comparing different views and research projects.

Below are a few possible topics to explore:
The historical evolution of parametric design: from generative design to computational design.
Parametric design and aesthetic research: programming calculation and choice.
Neuro-perceptive theories and “natural” geometries.
Computational design as a field of interdisciplinary action between design, programming, mathematics and biology.
Computational biomimetics.
Parametric design and production scales.
Biomimetic materials and technology.
Teaching drawing and geometry for design amid a paradigm shift.
The accessibility of design environments for parametric design.
Mathematic research oriented towards experimentation in planning and design.
Biological growth processes: algorithmic design and digital manufacturing.
Optimisation logic, such as structural hierarchies and stratification.
The recurrence of certain morphologies at different scales in nature.
Re-coding the approach to design according to parametric modelling processes.
 Transferring the logic of structural optimisation to design: creating hierarchies and stratifications.
The forms and dimensional relationships which recur in nature in various sizes and scales: fractals, branching and spirals and their generative origin.
Visual representation in terms of procedures, tools and cultural approaches.

Announcement and Submission Instructions:

Important dates:
Abstract submission January 18th, 2017
Notification of Abstract Review Results January 30th, 2017
Submission paper March 31st, 2017
Notification of Peer Review Results April 22nd, 2017
Submission of final version May 15th, 2017
Publication June 2017

#3 Issue Editors:
Carla Langella, Università degli Studi della Campania
Dario Scodeller, Università degli Studi di Ferrara
Veronica Dal Buono, Università degli Studi di Ferrara

Publishing process
Researches are invited to send to the Scientific Section of the MD Journal an abstract of 2000 maximum 4000 characters (including spaces), written in Italian (only foreign authors may write in English), by 18th January 2017.
The abstract, written in a clear, succinct manner, must be pertinent to the topic of the Call, set forth the objectives and purposes of the paper and be accompanied by keywords that highlight the project’s main points.
Abstracts must be sent to
Authors will receive a notification of acceptance by 30th January 2017.
After that, authors must send the articles (including all documentation, see link below), by 31st March 2017, to the same email address:
Following the review by peer referees, comments will be notified to authors by 22nd April 2017 and they will have to send the final version of the article to, by 15th May 2017.
The e-version of the open-class MD Journal 3/2017 is free and will be published on June 2017.
The magazine will also be printed and sent to the authors and to the main national libraries.

Nature and style of MD Journal scientific articles.
Please be reminded that scientific articles must comply with the following:
- definition and development of research topics;
- peer to peer argumentative intersubjective structure and style
- introduce connections and comparisons with established knowledge
- explicit references (notes, bibliography, sources).

Please refer to
Articles must be written in Italian; only foreign authors may write in English.
Authors must comply with the Editorial Rules.
Please refer to