People and Buildings

Most business leaders don\’t see space; only the objects that occupy space. To see space or, more precisely, the shape of space is a new and abstract concept for them. To further suggest that the space may be folded, as well as financially measured is an idea more suited to science fiction fantasies than business financial reports. Frankly, most executives struggle to even see the humans they hire. Because humans can be quantified by past experience and present performance, in a measure commonly known as human capital, they can be paid and this financial fact executives see. But social capital, the measure of corporate intellectual value (the IQ of a company) that originates from humans interacting with each other, is just as visible as space and just as difficult to see.Yet the interrelation of space and social capital is precisely the problem set that architects and designers must solve for. And if that weren\’t challenging enough, add to mix the ubiquity and invisibility of social interaction in time continuum. Even so, we are not likely to abandon physical propinquity in buildings because it still meets our primordial need for physical intimacy-that fluid sense of community that comes and with belonging and is inexorable linked to the raw territorialism of our hominid forbearers. Virtuality is a significant dimension of if not departure from the space-time continuum.Pedagogic Objective:So there you have it: the triangulation of physical space (the building or neighborhood), intellectual capital (the social interaction through community and culture) and virtual connectivity through technology (the e-collective). And you have to solve for it. This seminar is about understanding this evolutionary challenge, navigating its intellectual frontier, and developing pioneering techniques/methodologies to see it.Completion requirements:Attending all classes is mandatory. The criteria for final evaluation will be based on class participation and final paper (15-20 pages).