AI as a Design Collaborator

Share this Article

Architects working with AI can solve complex challenges more quickly, sustainably, and profitably


Architecture is inherently complex. A building of any considerable size must meet thousands of requirements related to design, construction, and use. Then there’s design intent—a vision for the architectural experience. Maintaining design intent while meeting requirements and solving problems is extremely challenging, at least for human minds. Artificial intelligence (AI), on the other hand, excels at meeting diverse requirements at once—even requirements that might seem to conflict. Autodesk Research works with leading architecture, engineering, and construction companies to help them employ AI agents to create buildings more quickly, more sustainably, and more profitably. The team helped Obayashi, a leading Japanese design and construction company, to accelerate their design process with AI, reducing design time by 50%—with reductions of 80% or more anticipated after further development. “AI alone is not going to solve our complex problems in architecture, engineering, and construction,” Mehdi Nourbakhsh says. “It is the combination of human and AI that can enable us to move forward.”

About the speaker

Mehdi Nourbakhsh is an author, speaker, and the CEO of YegaTech, a technology consulting company focused on helping architecture, engineering, and construction companies take advantage of AI. Previously, he led an AI studio at Autodesk Research. He holds a PhD in Design Computing and a master’s degree in Computer Science and has worked as both a structural engineer and a construction manager.

Related learning

Learn more about the role of AI in architecture with these resources:

Two Weeks to Four Hours: How Populous Built Efficiency with Generative Design

Exhibition design has a unique set of needs based on event diversity. The frequent transition of layouts demands a wide variety of designs, and AI can be a big help in the process. The team from Populous recently implemented Dynamo and generative design in Revit to optimize outcomes. In this panel discussion, they share best practices for building your own tools and maximizing automation workflows.

Architecture in the Age of More, Better, Faster

To meet the growing population demand, we need to rethink our design processes. Artificial intelligence has the power to help us not just build new things, but think new thoughts as well. Nicholas Desbiens shares two examples of recently completed projects that used AI and generative design to create thousands of possible building shapes—balancing competing goals that, when paired with collaborative interfaces with stakeholders, shaved months off the construction process.

4 Ways AI in Architecture and Construction Can Empower Building Projects

From urban development to better bidding to volumetric design, AI is helping designers take their skills further—providing tools to automate key aspects of the process and sorting through mountains of data. This Redshift piece explores four examples of how AI can reshape architecture for the better.