454 research outputs found

    The Hut on the Garden Plot - Informal Architecture in Twentieth-Century Berlin

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    In Berlin, self-built huts and sheds were a part of the urban fabric for much of the twentieth century. They started to proliferate after the First World War and were particularly common after the Second World War, when many Berliners had lost their homes in the bombings. These unplanned buildings were, ironically, connected to one of the icons of German orderliness: the allotment. Often depicted as gnome-adorned strongholds of petty bourgeois virtues, garden plots were also the site of mostly unauthorized architecture and gave rise to debates about public health and civic order. This paper argues that the evolution and subsequent eradication of informal architecture was an inherent factor in the formation of the modern, functionally separated city. Modern Berlin evolved from a struggle between formal and informal, regulation and unruliness, modernization and pre-modern lifestyles. In this context, the ambivalent figure of the allotment dweller, who was simultaneously construed as a dutiful holder of rooted-to-the-soil values and as a potential threat to the well-ordered urban environment, evidences the ambiguity of many conceptual foundations on which the modern city was built

    Glasgow’s Royal Concert Hall and the Invention of the Post-modern City

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    The Royal Concert Hall, designed by Leslie Martin, occupies a pivotal space in central Glasgow. Its opening in 1990 concluded a thirty-year war over modern and postmodern urban form. At the time, Glasgow’s city centre looked very different than three decades earlier, and the changes from a modern to a “postmodern” environment were paradigmatic for the shifts in many deindustrializing cities in Europe and North America. In this context the Royal Concert Hall is an example of how a single building was connected to a wide-ranging paradigm change. This article retraces the design debates on the basis of newspaper articles, interviews, and documents in particular from the City Council and other public agencies. It will show that the struggle that eventually defined the shape and use of Glasgow’s largest music venue as well as those of the entire city centre related to Glasgow’s reinvention as “the world’s first post-industrial city.” At the same time it shows that the new urban form was not a mandatory consequence of the economic shift but conditioned by several social and cultural specificities

    Vienna’s Resistance to the “Neoliberal Turn"

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    At the turn of the twenty-first century, when public authorities all over Europe increasingly retreated from their responsibility for housing, Vienna refrained from large-scale privatisations. Upholding the system of state-subsidised housing, the Austrian capital supported new architecture as a means to regenerate the inner city and to promote innovative social policy. This was based on original design inspired by a variety of mostly modernist precedents. Examples for new residences that follow this strategy include the Car-free Model Estate (1996–99, Cornelia Schindler and Rudolf Szedenik), the women-led scheme Margarete Schütte-Lihotzky-Hof (1993–97, Liselotte Peretti, Gisela Podreka, Elsa Prochazka and Franziska Ullmann), and the residences on the former railway station Nordbahnhof (1992–2015, master plan by Boris Podrecca and Heinz Tesar, buildings by various architects). This article will present Vienna’s turn-of-the-twenty-first-century housing as a successful strategy to provide affordable residences that respond to current needs, and at the same time a way to harness innovative architecture for social policy goals. The Vienna case also suggests that the ‘neoliberal turn’ in housing provision was a matter of political choice rather than economic necessity

    Second-Person in-Depth Phenomenological Inquiry as an Approach for Studying Enaction of Beliefs

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    Phenomenology and empirical research are not naturally compatible and devising an empirical technique aiming at researching experience is a challenge. This article presents second-person in-depth phenomenological inquiry – a technique that tries to meet this challenge by allowing the transformation of a participant greatly interested in the investigation of their own subjective experience, into a co-researcher. It then provides an example of this technique being used in a study on enaction of beliefs, more closely showing the cooperative research process of researcher and co-researcher and its result: a grounded theory. The article ends with a discussion on the techniques strengths and weaknesses

    Environmental Attitudes in 28 European Countries Derived From Atheoretically Compiled Opinions and Self-Reports of Behavior

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    People differ in their personal commitment to fighting climate change and protecting the environment. The question is, can we validly measure people's commitment by what they say and what they claim they do in opinion polls? In our research, we demonstrate that opinions and reports of past behavior can be aggregated into comparable depictions of people's personal commitment to fighting climate change and protecting the environment (i.e., their environmental attitudes). In contrast to the commonly used operational scaling approaches, we ground our measure of people’s environmental attitudes in a mathematically formalized psychological theory of the response process - the Campbell paradigm. This theory of the response process has already been extensively validated, and its relevance for manifest behavior has repeatedly been shown as well. In our secondary analysis of Eurobarometer data (N = 27,998) from 28 European countries, we apply the Campbell paradigm to a set of indicators that was not originally collected to be aggregated into a single scale. With our research, we propose a distinct way to measure behavior-relevant environmental attitudes that can be used even with a set of indicators that was originally atheoretically compiled. Overall, our study suggests that the Campbell paradigm provides a sound psychological measurement theory that can be applied to cross-cultural comparisons in the environmental protection domain

    Expanding the Scope of Impedance Analysis of Epithelial Barrier Function: Novel Assays and Devices

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    Epithelial barrier function is quantified by three parameters: (I) The transepithelial electrical resistance (TER) which is a measure for the permeability of small inorganic ions; (II) The molecular permeability coefficient (PE) that describes the permeation of molecular probes across barrier-forming layers; (III) The osmotic water permeability coefficient (POS) which quantifies epithelial barrier function to water as a response to an osmotic pressure gradient. This thesis introduces two novel assays which provide a combined and simultaneous analysis of PE and TER ("PETER-assay") or POS and TER ("POSTER-assay"), respectively. In addition, impedance-based TER measurements are performed with PEDOT-based electrodes

    Modernising Glasgow – Tower Blocks, Motorways, and New Towns 1940-2010

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    This article presents the history of Glasgow’s architectural and urban modernization, which resulted, among others, in the serial design of both modernist tower blocks and low-rise buildings, extensive ‘slum clearance’, motorway construction, and the establishment of new towns in the wider area. Drawing on select archival materials and a variety of published studies, the article draws a bigger picture of modern Glasgow, as it evolved as a result of comprehensive ideas, their partial implementation, and their subsequent modification over the course of seven decades. The article shows that within the umbrella approach “modernist urbanism” there were in fact a number of different strategies. They were related to different municipal and national institutions, whose rivalries had a significant impact on the built outcome, and eventually proved to be more disruptive than the values and visions that these institutions shared. It will also show that the modern aspirations for grandeur were intrinsically vulnerable to disruption, and were largely implemented in a makeshift and reactive manner, which made the ambitious attempt to convert an ailing industrial city into a flourishing decentralised metropolis largely unsuccessful. This is noticeable to date in particular architectural and urban forms, for example if one compares the peripheral housing estate of Castlemilk (built from 1954 by the City of Glasgow) to the new towns of East Kilbride and Cumbernauld (built from 1947 and 1955, respectively, by the British national government), or to the “Comprehensive Development Area” Hutchesontown-Gorbals (begun 1957, led by the City of Glasgow) in the city centre

    The invention of the historic city : building the past in East Berlin, 1970-1990

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    Thesis (Ph. D.)--Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Dept. of Architecture, 2006.Includes bibliographical references (p. [365]-382).The idea of a "historic city" is a rather recent phenomenon. As a conceptual framework, it evolved over the course of the 1970s and 1980s from the intellectual foundations of modernist urban design. This is especially well illustrated in East Berlin, where a heterogeneous group of politicians, architects, and scholars called for an urban environment that provides the individual experience of historicity. Their ideas were most prominently infused in a series of showcase projects built during the 1980s. For the celebration of Berlin's 750th anniversary in 1987, some of the long-despised late-19th-century tenement neighborhoods were remodeled and fitted out with the insignia of historic every-day life. In addition, a number of representative architectural ensembles were built that made use of different historic styles. The invention of the historic city collapsed the memories of different historic periods into a generic notion of "the past." This process relied on a specific elasticity of the language employed by designers and theorists. Over the course of the 1970s and 1980s, terms such as preservation or reconstruction retained a positive connotation while simultaneously time undergoing a radical change in meaning. In the same way, the quasi-biological conception of the city as a body with a life cycle, where "obsolete" neighborhoods had to be regularly demolished, was gradually suspended. Through both remodeling and new construction, the East German leaders and their collaborators initiated a renaissance of once neglected neighborhoods, which after the German reunification became prime locations for upscale housing and retail.(cont.) Construction policy before and after the German reunification therefore has to be seen as a continuous development rather than a break. Despite the different political and economic system in the German Democratic Republic, East Berlin design politics during the 1970s and 1980s paralleled the approaches in Western countries, where real and imagined urban history was increasingly commodified and marketed to local elites and tourists. The historic city also became the conceptual background for a widely practiced exegesis of historic residues, through which Berlin's middle classes claimed social and political legitimacy.by Florian Urban.Ph.D
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