From Bauhaus to Greenhouse: Forging a Dialogue about Sustainability

By Matthew Kubik and Patrick J. Ashton.

Published by The International Journal of Architectonic, Spatial, and Environmental Design

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

This paper reports on a multidisciplinary process of dialogue created around the principles of sustainability and the changes necessary to implement sustainable design. The process began at the Third International Conference on Design Principles and Practices, held in Berlin, Germany in 2009. Out of this dialogue emerged a statement of principles entitled The Berlin Manifesto. The dialogue continued at the Fourth International Conference on Design Principles and Practices, held in Chicago, Illinois, USA in 2010. This paper explores the rationale for the substance as well as the process of these two dialogues. The Berlin Manifesto is reviewed, along with the basic principles of sustainability. Following a discussion of Chicago as a product of quintessentially modern (i.e., unsustainable) development, the insights produced by the focused dialogue of an international team of designers are reported.

Keywords: Sustainable Development, Sustainable Design, Sustainability, Built Environment, Environmental Design, Urban Planning, Green Building, Chicago, Bauhaus, Knowledge Management

The International Journal of Architectonic, Spatial, and Environmental Design, Volume 6, Issue 2, pp.1-10. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 220.227KB).

Matthew Kubik

Associate Professor of Interior Design, Interior Design Program, Indiana University Purdue University Fort Wayne, Fort Wayne, USA

I am an architect and Associate Professor of Interior Design at Indiana University Purdue University Fort Wayne, USA. I hold a Bachelor of Architecture Degree from the University of Notre Dame, Indiana, USA. I was one of the first graduates of the Architectural Association School of Architecture Energy Programme, London, England earning a Graduate Diploma. I also did post-graduate studies at the Royal College of Art, London, England. My design practice focuses on issues of aesthetic expression resulting from minimum energy use as a design determinant. My portfolio includes appropriate technology detailing for projects in Algeria, earth sheltered housing, and passive solar architecture. My current research with sociologist Pat Ashton is a study of cultural transformation incurred through controversial ideas from ancient through modern sources and resultant expressions in the built environment.

Dr. Patrick J. Ashton

Associate Professor of Sociology and Director, Peace and Conflict Studies, Department of Sociology, Indiana University Purdue University Fort Wayne, Fort Wayne, USA

I am working with Professor Matt Kubik, architect, on the connection between social issues and the built environment. Specifically, we are looking at how competing political ideologies shape different design strategies and interactions with the built environment. We taught a nationally-televised honors course that examined how modernism has created an urban built environment in the U.S. that undermines sociality and community and explored possible alternatives in new urbanism and social ecology. Recently, in connection with an exhibit of first edition famous printed works, we taught a mini-course that examined how foundational ideologies in Western thought are expressed in the built environment. I have published a number of articles on the political economy of suburban development as well as analysis of the concept of community.