What if?: Scenarios that change (y)our block

17 January 2017

Fall 2016 / 2017 @ GSAPP

How much food and where it is produced come, for instance, to the equation, as well as the type of governance that better responds to current demands. What about animal species that were basically neglected from urban life for decades? How does energy consumption define what a city can be? As new concerns arise, designers must devise a method for confronting the ever increasing number of parameters that the city needs to address. Yet contemporary design rarely – if ever – takes those scenarios into account. Rather, design disciplines continue to engage the task of planning and designing for new settlement in fixed, singular and unresponsive ways that presume the preferred outcome is the only one worth elaborating. However, designers need to begin thinking in terms of scenarios, contingency and variability . On that score, during the Fall Semester 2016, students will be confronted to a multitude of what if’s? that will shape their design. Students will start by looking at the fabrication of the city through a multitude of filters, and to commonly define a series of hypothetical scenarios that will affect the future agenda of design. What if the average global temperature rises 6C instead of 2C by 2100? What if national borders are eliminated? What if regulations impose a minimum global FAR of 20?…






Prof. Winy Maas, Javier Arpa, Adrien Ravon


Grant Edward Duncan McCracken, Saphiya Abu Al-Maati, Jean Qin Gu, Boer Deng, Fancheng Fei, Kimberlee Boonbanjerdsri, Stine Redder Pedersen, Renyuan Wang, Shu Du,Aleksandr Plotkin, Michael James Storm, Rebecca Book

Guest Critics

Stephan Al, Eva Franck, Hilary Sample, Mimi Hoang, David van der Leer, Carlos Medellin, Amale Andraos, Anu Leinonen