(…) However, by entrusting the objectivity* of the morphogenesis to the sphere of nature, and in fact to theories that are far too general to be productive and useful, architecture is stranded on the shores of a programmatic bewilderment: if it does not focus on the production of forms, but on the natural and hence objective rules* of morphogenesis, all architectural outcomes and all that they entail are rendered fair and equal: this signifies the annulment of the field of meaning. And because meaning is a social construct, that which is pushed aside by the impetuous return of the natural is, precisely, the social -it is society, it is history (…) However, in the proposed process of natural morphogenesis, the architectural forms do not realise a project but are the outcome of the construction of events, as algorithmic interpretations of information data. The architect is given a new responsibility -not to design the forms but to prepare a bare field of possibilities on which the forces of reality will develop on objective* terms. The resolution of conflicts results into a valid though un-planned, unforeseen, uncanny and consequently estranging architectural form. In contrast, in the practised strategies of architectural design, where subjective* initiative is required by the designer, the construction of the uncanny, of the unexpected and the unforeseen, the estrangement or the paroxysm of architecture’s inherent indeterminability aims to alter conventional socio-spatial relations and differential meaning-giving outcomes (…) This acrobatic, risky relationship between intention and coincidence, between the design’s theoretical abstraction and the existence of reality’s multiple parameters, between natural disorder and intellectual order, perhaps between desire and need -this is what the introduction of the mythologised diagram is attempting to determine in digital strategies: it is an idea bordering on a game, a pseudoscientific mechanism of protestant deincrimination for the abundant pleasures provided by the exceptional new voluptuous spatial experiences of digital design, a ruse aiming to prevent the abolition of the responsibility of designing and to restore the designer’s initiative.
*Are the rules of morphogenesis indeed objective? or just a logical (con)sequence of events based on voluntary data interpretation? In this case, the design process -traditional or digital- is always subjective.
This is an experiment in the framework TU Delft led Horizon 2020 Project called REPAiR: two MSc courses were transformed to integrate aspects of different fields of expertise. Students were introduced to two resource flows that were previously identified as key flows by the local stakeholders: food waste, and construction and demolition waste and were expected to show a deep understanding of CE and its spatial implications
(…) incorporating the concept of CE in an integrative manner in urban design and planning courses is challenging because of its metabolic and complex nature (…) (1) the city is a complex, self-organizing system, where economy is an important factor, but not the dominant one; (2) the focus of CE approaches on the production side of the value chain and the under-representation of the need for sustainable consumption patterns as crucial aspect for the transition towards a CE; (3) the exclusion of land as a resource although it is one of the most valuable resources of regions; (4) the neglecting of infrastructure, both as a resource, but also as an instrument to steer circular policies; and (5) that the dominant approach ignores the importance of different scales for closing resource loops (…) overcoming these inadequacies requires the integration of expertise on resource flows and industrial processes.
Challenges of integrating practices of circular economy in education were overcome by collaboration with researchers in a situated environment that allowed: “an enhanced problem definition, a substantial participation of societal partners in education and an enhanced valorisation of student work via partner institutes.” Supporting course elements were also integrated such as lectures; workshops and tutor preparation. An overall of 200 students participated in the courses whose work was later evaluated as to the integration of CE principles and resources flows.
One clear effect of the integration of the CE concept into teaching was that the students understood that they needed to address challenges from a systemic perspective rather early into the design process.
References: Wandl, Alexander, Verena Balz, Lei Qu, Cecilia Furlan, Gustavo Arciniegas and Ulf Hackauf. “The Circular Economy Concept in Design Education: Enhancing Understanding and Innovation by Means of Situated Learning.” Urban Planning 4, no. 3, (2019): 63-75. DOI: 10.17645/up.v4i3.2147, full article available here
In 1973, following the strikes that beset the British construction industry during the early 1970s, Alistair McAlpine commissioned a design program for his construction company, Sir Robert McAlpine & Sons, that aimed to increase production efficiency and improve labour relations. Cedric Price’s proposal took the format of a two-volume report and a Portable Enclosures Programme (PEP) which, while presenting a critical view of building sites, also demonstrated his ambition to go beyond the immediate brief, employing architectural knowledge and thoughtful design to respond to pressing societal issues and human necessities.
The project emphasizes “the social role and responsibility of the architect by rethinking traditional field practices and pursuing strategies to initiate social progress through critical research, new tools and experimental attitudes” (Domus, 2017). The designer becomes the moderator of social activity (Herdt, 2016).
To qualify labour on building sites, Price acknowledged the need to reframe the relations between the multiple actors involved, from government to service suppliers, from technical staff to workers’ unions. He often stressed the importance of communicating to everyone, from the workers to the administrative personnel, the purposes and goals of the report, introducing “a participatory form of Company planning” and resisting the tendency for decision making to be “too top heavy.”
energy efficient high-tech, low-tech, or vernacular strategies
health, well-being, and quality of life issues
an analogy to natural forms or from processes in natural systems
performance over appearance
appearance over performance
intelligent and responsive materials, renewable, recyclable, biodegradable
resilience and circular economy
not building at all and instead promote virtualization
ecological footprinting and consumerist lifestyles
best practice guidelines, assessment methods
All above-mentioned concepts are context-specific and inevitably contested. Enacting and translating sustainability in arch design practices can occur in different stages of the design/build process:
during the design brief phase that defines the sustainability targets: translating the concept of sustainability into design practices, recognizing the controversial issues to tackle/ those is in charge of giving directions should ask those bidding to work on giving meaning to these goals
when analyzing the ways in which design strategies are constructed between the distinct vocational design actors
when establishing supposed equivalences between projected and actual design
Schröder, T. (2018). Giving meaning to the concept of sustainability in architectural design practices: Setting out the analytical framework of translation. Sustainability, 10(6), 1-15. . DOI: 10.3390/su10061710
The author claims the need of a systematic approach “that brings together the design of built environments with the best scientific knowledge of processes of change in complex natural and social systems.” Urban planning must work within these systems that require local info (through participatory practices) and the creation of technical solutions. He thinks the challenge is mapping informality as cities grow in unpredictable ways. He also claims that cities are about connections: “the socioeconomic and physical links that allow each one of us to make a living, obtain services that make our lives easier, and learn and invest our time and resources.”
The effects of connections can be traced as the concentration of social networks in space and time where the value of a group is not proportional to the group’s numbers, but to its interactions. GPS tracking, and smart phone technologies can help track the networks.
New methods from urban science allow the accelerated evolution of these neighborhoods to follow natural urban processes. They are based in part on the mathematical analysis of detailed maps, including the development of algorithms to optimize building access, delivery of services, formalization of land, and taxation, with minimal disturbance and cost.
Planning through the development of detailed maps at the neighborhood level is also an effective way to capture local, person-centric knowledge, providing a clear vehicle for better local politics via the coordination of priorities and action from communities, local governments, and other stakeholders. The convergence of a networked science of cities, quantitative methods of spatial analysis, and information technology tools is key to allow users to participate.
Luís M. A. Bettencourt (2019) Designing for Complexity: The Challenge to Spatial Design from Sustainable Human Development in Cities Technology|Architecture + Design, 3:1, 24-32, DOI: 10.1080/24751448.2019.1571793
mechanistic model: the human as a task-oriented organism, understood and described only in relation to the task at hand/ human as a passive agent merely enacting the designer’s plan of use and having no agency
perceptual-cognitive-motivational model: the human as an ‘internal processing organism’ with subjective traits
behaviorist model: this focused on external human actions in the environment instead of internal thoughts and feelings and intentions. (it does not identify however with Skinner’s operant psychology)/ Altman classifies here all action-centric and interactionalist descriptions of human engagements with the environment without excluding intentions and motivational states
ecological model: declared human behavior and environment a mutually constituting, dynamic ensemble/ Behavior itself, in other words, resided in the relation between the human and social and material contexts/ this model promoted an agentive understanding of the human/ Altman also emphasized its model’s utility for establishing a common ground among social scientists and designers thus cultivating the conditions of interdisciplinary collaboration/ it offered a reconciliatory mechanism between the unit and the whole, the small and the large scale, analysis and synthesis, thus urging scientists and practitioners to “surpass the provincialism of their parent professions”
Vardouli, Th., 2016. User Design: Constructions of the “user” in the history of design research. In 2016 Design Research Society 50th Anniversary Conference, 27-30 June 2016, Brighton, UK
Clinical_FOR DESIGN RESEARCH: focuses on design problems that are specific and individual cases requiring information for that unique situation/ primarily prescriptive research methods for specific and feasible design solutions (Downton)/ Notably, research for design is the category of research that most practitioners and many academics associate with the term “Design Research”/ Many of the methods briefly mentioned in this section could generate findings that are relevant beyond the scope of one clinical situation, but often they are inadequately developed in practice.
Applied_THROUGH DESIGN RESEARCH: focuses on investigating general classes of design problems or products. The common trait of applied research is the [systematic] attempt to gather from many individual cases a hypothesis or several hypotheses that may explain how a class of products takes place/ The most important aspect of research through design is that it seeks to provide an explanation or theory within a broader context/ Buchanan calls it Dialectic Science or Productive Science and includes the study of form and function in relation to human activity, as well as the study of materials/ it is derived from and valuable for practice; it is growing rapidly; both practitioners and researchers are contributing significantly to the literature and on-line discussions; the discussion is extensive, addressing hundreds of approaches; and much of the subject matter has been derived from the social sciences, business, and marketing/ In her evolving map of design research methods, Sanders represents the range of attitudes towards human-oriented design, from the expert mindset and the participatory mindset, in both research-led and design-led inquiries/
Basic_ABOUT DESIGN RESEARCH: research about or into design as the work that is “carried out under the heading of other disciplines/ searching for “an explanation in the experience of designers and those who use products”/ designers may also raise questions that are not characteristic of other disciplines because often the answers are translated into form, colour, and the objects that surround us. This affords practitioners, students, and educators with the challenge to produce discipline specific knowledge that may be communicated by drawings, sketches, models, and other visual representations embodying non-verbal codes or messages as well
Frankel, L., Racine, M., 2010. The Complex Field of Research: for Design, through Design, and about Design. Paper presented at the International Conference of the Design Research Society, Montréal, July 2010.
Roggema merges the understandings of Jonas, Millburn & Brown, Hauberg, Basballe & Halskov and Lima et al. to produce a series of diagrams indicative of the research by design process:
According to Jonas there is a fundamental distinction between analysis(the way things are)/ projection (how things could be)/ synthesis (how things will be)
According to Millburn & Brown there are five models that explain distinct approaches of incorporating research into design: artistic, intuitive, adaptive, analytical and systematic. They all have a pre-design phase that resembles the analytical one mentioned earlier.
According to Lima et al. research by design should demonstrate a question to be addressed. Projection then becomes the phase when adequate answers are sought using non-textual artifacts. The final stage synthesis brings forward the outcomes of the research, but also a knowledge transfer with a wider impact
According to Hauberg, first stage focuses on perceptions and investigation; second phase to program/proposals and rationalization and the third phase to communication.
According to Basballe and Halskov there is a coupling in the first stage that unites research and design interests/ in the second there is an interweaving as they influence each other/ decoupling appears during the production phase and final evaluation
make research-based learning the standard: learning is based on discovery guided by mentoring rather than on the transmission of information/ inherent in inquiry-based learning is an element of reciprocity: faculty can learn from students as students are learning from faculty/ Involving Undergraduates in the Research Process/ A Mentor for Every Student/ Internships
construct an inquiry-based freshman year: The first year of a university experience needs to provide new stimulation for intellectual growth and a firm grounding in inquiry-based learning and communication of information and ideas/ Seminar Learning/ Block Scheduling/ Remediation Before Admission
build on freshman foundation: The freshman experience must be consolidated by extending its principles into the following years. Inquiry-based learning, collaborative experience, writing and speaking expectations need to characterize the whole of a research university education/ Long-term Mentorship/ Integrating Transfer Students
remove barriers to interdisciplinary education/ Breaking the Disciplinary Molds
link communication skills and course work: Undergraduate education must enable students to acquire strong communication skills, and thereby create graduates who are proficient in both written and oral communication/ Communication in Every Course
use information technology creatively: Because research universities create technological innovations, their students should have the best opportunities to learn state-of-the-art practices—and learn to ask questions that stretch the uses of the technology/ The Electronic Classroom/ Enriching Teaching Through Technology
culminate with a capstone experience: The final semester(s) should focus on a major project and utilize to the fullest the research and communication skills learned in the previous semesters.
educate graduate students as apprentice teachers: Research universities must redesign graduate education to prepare students for teaching undergraduate students as well as for other professional roles/ Reshaping Professional Training/ Restoring Communication/ Solving the Teaching Crisis
change faculty reward systems: Research universities must commit themselves to the highest standards in teaching as well as research and create faculty reward structures that validate that commitment/ Synergy of Teaching and Research/ Evaluating Teaching
cultivate a sense of community: Research universities should foster a community of learners. Large universities must find ways to create a sense of place and to help
students develop small communities within the larger whole/ Diversity as an Asset/ Linking Commuters and Residents
Building Community Report goals (1996):
an enriched mission: whereby students are empowered with a duty to promote a wider agenda of beauty in support of an enriched environment and society
diversity with dignity: promoting inclusive, varied, accessible and creative educational environments
standards without standardization: maintaining diversity in provision and offer while maintaining rigorous, fair and open professional and educational standards
connected curriculum: fusing the scholarships of teaching, inquiry and engagement with other communities within and outside the academy and the profession
climate for learning: providing learning communities, which are supportive, transparent and sharing of common purposes between students, academics, support staff and professionals
unified profession: seeking closer collaboration and understanding between the academy and the architectural profession
service to the nation: establishing an ethical and socially activist agenda in architectural education for the betterment of society and the environment.
Boyer 1996: Four forms of scholarship: of Discovery/ of Integration/ of Application/ of Teaching
Glassick et al. 1997, SIX QUALITATIVE STANDARDS FOR THE IDENTIFICATION AND ASSESSMENT OF SCHOLARSHIP: Clear Goals/ Adequate Preparation/ Appropriate Methods/ Significant results/ Effective Presentation/ Reflective Critique
SoTL (Scholarship of Teaching and Learning) : movement that was developed to encourage critically reflective inquiry into educational methods and theories for the promotion of successful students learning/ philosophical shift from teaching to learning/
Teaching Commons: an academic space whereby ‘communities of educators committed to pedagogical inquiry and innovation come together to exchange ideas about teaching and learning and use them to meet the challenges of educating students for personal, professional, and civic life (Huber and Hutchings, 2005)/ the title has been imbued with contemporary resonance with the rise of Creative Commons
university research often detracts from the quality of teaching (Pocklington and Tupper 2002: 7)
courses taught by those at the cutting edge of research will necessarily be of higher quality than those taught by those merely using the research results of others – whatever the apparent quality of their style of delivery (Lee 2004: 9)
there is clear evidence from a range of studies in different types of institutions of students valuing learning in a research-based environment (Jenkins 2004: 29)
students are likely to gain most benefit from research, in terms of depth of learning and understanding, when they are also involved in research (Healey and Roberts 2004)
A range of terms is used in the literature, often interchangeably, to describe the research-teaching nexus. Griffiths (2004) suggests that a distinction might be made between teaching which is predominantly:
Research-led: where students learn about research findings, the curriculum content is dominated by staff research interests, and information transmission is the main teaching mode;
Research-oriented: where students learn about research processes, the curriculum emphasizes as much the processes by which knowledge is produced as learning knowledge that has been achieved, and staff try to engender a research ethos through their teaching;
Research-based: where students learn as researchers, the curriculum is largely designed around inquiry-based activities, and the division of roles between teacher and student is minimized
Research-tutored: top left quadrant, which, although not recognized by Griffiths (2004), is student-focused and emphasizes research content (see image above)
research is context specific and multidisciplinary rather than pure and discipline based; it has social relevance rather than being hypothesis led; it uses fuzzy, rather than empirically based data; it is problem solving rather than deductive. In what might be termed the commodification of knowledge, how knowledge is managed, synthesized and adapted become as important as knowledge itself (Jenkins and Zetter, 2003: 11)
Healey, M., 2005. Linking research and teaching: exploring disciplinary spaces and the role of inquiry-based learning. In Barnett, R (ed) (2005) Reshaping the University: New Relationships between Research, Scholarship and Teaching. McGraw Hill / Open University Press, pp.67-78
UCL’s twenty-year vision and a wholesale commitment to changing programs of study/ its goal is to enable students to participate in research and inquiry throughout their education/ allows students to make connections both vertically across a program’s year groups and horizontally across disciplinary divides, even beyond the university setting/ research-based education aspires to widen the notion of what constitutes legitimate research and who has the authority to contribute to it.
The University is changing: new ways of knowing in order to thrive in a unknown future/ in the age of supercomplexity a new epistemology for the university awaits, one that is open, bold, engaging, accessible, and conscious of its own insecurity (Barnett)
SIX DIMENSIONS OF CONNECTIVITY
students are encouraged to connect with staff and learn about ongoing research
connected sequence of research activities throughout students’ programs (scaffolding)
research is inherently social/ students are encouraged to connect their learning across the subjects they are taking and with the wider world
students are encouraged to connect academic learning with workplace learning and develop a full range of professional attributes and skills
assessments: critical questions concerning their forms or types of skills they address
interpersonal connections between people from different disciplines, cultures and backgrounds
Carnell, B., 2017. Towards a connected curriculum in architectural education: research-based education in practice. In Charrette 4(1) Spring 2017, pp. 14-26
Dewsbury: the process of putting together a mix of relations
Phillips: agencement/ arrangement,fixing, fitting
Wise1: process of arranging and organizing and claims for identity, character and territoty
Ballantyne: new identities are generated through connections
De Landa 1: assemblage as a whole cannot be reduced to the aggregate properties of its parts since it is characterized by connections and capacities rather than the properties of the parts
Anderson & McFarlane 1: it includes heterogeneous human/non human, organic/inorganic, and technical/natural elements
De Landa 2: it is an alliance of heterogeneous elements
Wise 2: they are dynamically made and unmade in terms of the two axes of territorialisation (stabilization)/ deterritorialisation (destabilization) and language (express)/technology (material)
Dovey 1: assemblages are at once express and material
Farias 1: assemblages focus both on actual/material and possible/emergent
Deleuze & Guattari: they are fundamentally territorial
De Landa 3: territorialization is both spatial and non-spatial
Dovey 2: territory is a stabilized assemblage
Angelo: it addresses the inseparability of sociality and spatiality and the ways in which their relations and liaisons are established in the city and urban life
Anderson & McFarlane 2: it is an a priori reduction of sociality/spatiality to any fixed forms/set of forms of processes or relations
De Landa 4: assemblage theory offers a ‘bottom-up” ontology that works with analytical techniques rather than logical reasoning (…) the theory opposes the reduction of the entities to the essences asa deficiency of the social realism
De Landa 5: they are continuously in the process of emerging and becoming
Deleuze’s becoming-in-the-world as opposed to Heidegger’s being-in-the-world
Farias 2: assemblage thinking tends to develop empirical knowledge rather than theoretical analysis and critique / it is about inquiry and explorative engagement
assemblage and the city
Farias: the city as multiplicity rather than a whole
McFarlane: assemblage refers to ways in which urbanism is produced not as a “resultant formation” but as an ongoing process of construction (…) it refers to city as a verb in making urbanism through historical and potential relations
Dovey: assemblages are the main products of the “flows of desire”
assemblage and critical urbanism
McFarlane: assemblage as a concept, orientation, and imaginary/ as a relational composition process that contributes to the labour and socio-materiality of the city/ as an orientation to the potentiality of actors and sites in relation to history, required labour, and the capacity of urban process/ it offers some orientations to “critical urbanism” in terms of focusing on potentiality, agency of materials and composition of the “social imaginary”
Tonkiss: assemblage thinking is likely to generate a “template urbanism,” rather than a critical one
Brenner, Madden & Wachsmuth: they adopt the theory in relation to the political economy
One of the critical contributions of assemblage thinking for understanding the complexity of the city problems is to encourage multiscalar thinking
the diagram can be understood as an “abstract machine” in Deleuzian concept of assemblage thinking. In this way, diagrammatic thinking can be used as a means to abstractly illustrate the complexities of an urban assemblage as both a product and process
mapping can be considered as an abstraction that has the capacity to unravel what De Landa (2005) calls “real virtuality”, which is a kind of “reality” that has not
been “actualised” yet
diagrams, maps, and types have the capacity to produce a kind of “spatial knowledge” that can be effectively used as a basis to draw on the ways in which the city works in relation to spatiality and sociality. It also assists with specifying the space of possible solutions for the existing city problems and embodied capacities for transformational change
assemblage theory reads place as a multiplicity that is in the process of “becoming” in relation to social-spatial and material-express alignments
Kamalipour, H., Peimani, N., 2015. Assemblage Thinking and the City: Implications for Urban Studies. In Current Urban Studies, 2015, Vol.3, pp. 402-408, http://dx.doi.org/10.4236/cus.2015.34031
Image: Topographie du sol, mars 1957 Assemblage d’empreintes. Signée «J. Dubuffet» et datée «57» en bas à gauche. Titrée, signée «J. Dubuffet» et datée «mars 57» au dos. 60 x 105 cm, Available here