Political Philosophy Seminar – Design as Politics

During next years autumn semester, Design as Politics will offer a complete new course: The Political Philosophy Seminar. Instructor is the Philosopher and Architect: Marta Relats. This philosophy seminar is aimed at solidifying the reasons why designs are created. Why is the world better with your design rather than without? The emphasis will be put on political philosophy and the economic theories related to it through design issues. This will be done by means of lectures, readings and little exercises in various fields: aesthetics, politics, economy, ethics and value theory among others. The seminar has two objectives: Firstly and most essentially, to provide an awareness of… Read More

Design as Politics presents: Follow The Money – Finance, Architecture and the City

Also the coming semester the chair of Design as Politics will offer a master graduation studio to architecture and to urbanism students. After having focused on inequality (‘In the Ghetto’, 2010-2011), on vacancy (‘Rotterdam-Detroit’, 2011-2012) and on Democracy (‘We the People’, 2012-2013), we will focus on Money in 2013-2014. Why Money? What does design have to do with money? We would say: everything! Money has become the central critical issue for architecture and planning. How to plan and build when public and private funds have dried up? Why design new buildings, when the existing ones are not even finished or used? Why… Read More

Wouter Vanstiphout @ Strelka Talks

A few weeks ago, Wouter Vanstiphout was asked to speak for ‘Strelka Talks’ – a cool new initiative by the Strelka Institute for Media, Architecture and Design, for which they invite speakers from various field for a 30 minute video talk on “critically important topics concerning contemporary cities and urban development.” Wouters gave a talk under the name “Damn the Masters’ Plan!”, based on our blame the architect lecture series where he analyses the complex correlation between certain types of urban development and the deeply rooted discontent of the citizens. Check it out! The Strelka Talks are curated by Anastassia… Read More

Workshop Almere Poort-Oost

Last week, our ‘We the people’ students moved to Almere in order to experience life in Holland’s newest New Town, and -more importantly- to participate in a real-life design workshop, organized by Design as Politics and the International New Town Institute, for the municipality of Almere. During this workshop, the students worked on an urban plan and development strategy for a new area of the city. At the same time they got a glimpse of the –sometimes harsh– reality and the politics behind city making in the current economic situation. At the end of the workshop, the students presented their work… Read More

We the people student work

Last Tuesday, we organized a pin-up presentation in which the students of our ‘We, the people’ graduation studio presented their work of the last 4 months. The diverse range of projects in which the students address issues as the development of the Hoeksche Waard, based on its regional identity, the position of Refugees in Amman, the promotion of democracy in the urban development of china’s Tegang community, the use of architecture to encourage public participation in the food system of Athens, Georgia, and other architectural or urban design projects by our students, can be found here. The pages will be… Read More

Design as Politics at Play the City’s Majority Report kick-off event

On the 14th of December, Wouter Vanstiphout and our ‘We The People’ graduation students will participate in the kick-off event of Play the city’s public research program Majority Report. Everyday interactive new media tools pop up and reach you through the web, mobile devices or sensors in the city. Some of these tools promise to provide you with a greener future, more efficient mobility, better connected citizens, a more transparent governance or higher living quality. But is this really the case? Which one of these platforms actually makes a real change in your life? The Designs as Politics students open… Read More

Shrinking regions growing Democracy

– Update: 13 Nov. 2012 – by DasP Students: Johnny Tascon, Bert Oostdijk and Wu Xiayu. As a way to propose a set of scenarios for the people to decide upon the future of the Prignitz region, the “urban tool –kit for Hoogvliet” by Maxwan and Crimson has been taken as an example to implement. After examining different aspects of the region, like the economy, the landscape, the electoral behavior, demographics, and vacant buildings, we tried to sum up the fundamental choices the region faces. Prignitz is not only a shrinking region; it is also one that seems to have… Read More


The Aedes Network Campus Berlin invited Design as Politics and the Why Factory (Winy Maas) to organise a design studio for students from the TUDelft and TU Berlin. Theme of the workshop: Resilience and Democracy – Urban Regions Under Stress. The studio explores the key outcomes of the 2011/12 debate series (pdf) Design&Politics: The Next Phase – a collaboration between Henk Ovink (Director National Spatial Planning, Netherlands Ministry for Infrastructure and Environment) and ANCB- of which the closing debate (video) took place at the NAi in April 2012 during the 5th International Architecture Biennale Rotterdam. The collaboration continues with this… Read More

Afaina de Jong on Visual storytelling

Last week, we organized the second workshop for our students participating in the “we the people” graduation studio. This time: a hands-on session by the multidisciplinary architect Afaina de Jong on Visual storytelling. During this workshop, Afaina de Jong – creator of the book  ‘For the People, By the People: A Visual Story of the DIY City’ – introduced the students to her vision on what architecture and the city can be in the 21st century with a DIY attitude at the heart of the city making process. She explained how photography could be used as a tool to register… Read More

Electoral geography by Josse de Voogd

For our graduation studio “We the people – Democracy, Architecture and the City”, we organized a series of workshops and lectures from professionals in the field. For the first session we invited Josse de Voogd – an independent researcher on electoral geography – who gave us a fresh, new perspective on the relation between voting behavior and the built environment: The electoral map of the Netherlands shows a multi-colored mosaic of different regions and neighbourhoods with their specific voting behaviour. Although the Netherlands is an egalitarian country, there is a remarkable segregation when it comes to voting behaviour and to… Read More