The research, therefore, asks:
How may a study of building as a relational practice offer (re)newed insights into the contemporary discourse of building?
How may these insights contribute to the concept of building and potentially affect the concept of sustainable building?
With this, In Search of Building takes a step back to reconsider the green transition in Denmark from a built perspective. As an alternative that rethinks sustainable building, not as an added feature, but as an inherent aspect of a resilient practice, which has prevailed throughout human existence but only recently led to a global crisis. Consequently, In Search of Building applies a relational approach to unfold the understanding of building beyond utility and construction.
Data collection consists of interview-based case studies, site surveys on self-build projects, general practitioner interviews, and theoretical analyses on vernacular architecture to establish key learnings on buildings and their contexts. In turn, these constitute the components for developing a relational perspective on building that unravels its intricate networks of interactions and relationships among humans, materials, and environments as a basis for a reflective framework to highlight and question decision-making in design and construction and (re)form(ulat)e building and building sustainability as integrated and relational practices.
The research findings invite an interdisciplinary discussion on the values and meanings of building, suggesting it should be viewed not just as a physically designed and built object but as a complex interplay of sociocultural processes and material practices. Integrating multiple stakeholders such as residents, materials, contractors, environments and political entities, a broader perspective on building emerges, revealing its multifaceted disposition. This broadened view is essential to address the challenges of the climate emergency more effectively.
As a result, In Search of Building makes an ethical proposition to profoundly rethink building as an interconnected and transdisciplinary approach of multiple stakeholders and broader environmental impacts. It moreover highlights the associated responsibility of this, which must be assumed by mainstream industry to truly advance sustainability in current building practices.
- Lektor Thomas Hilberth
- Adjunkt Urszula Kozminska
- Adjunkt Elizabeth Donovan