Last Monday, Wouter Vanstiphout gave a lecture at the TU Delft architecture faculty as part of the master education in urbanism. Just as our current graduation studio, the lecture was titled ‘Follow the Money,’ and was focused on the complex correlation between economy and architecture or urban planning. Wouter started his lecture with an explanation of the current financial crisis and its effects on architecture. From foreclosures in Las Vegas, through ghost towns in Spain and China, to the risky politics of ground development in the Netherlands, he ended his lecture with a more positive note by describing various projects in which architects take an active role in financing ‘their’ projects.
Except for motivating the students to make the component of money –just as the technical structure and the electrical installations- an integral part of the design, we also hope that Wouter inspired our special quest of the morning; Melanie Schultz van Haegen, minister of infrastructure and the environment, who came to visit the lecture out of special interest for our chair.