Responsibilities of Architecture

Tom Fisher is the dean of the College of Design at the University of Minnesota. He has many published works on the role of research in design fields and how it can be used to create some forward thinking strategies. Today, he spoke to us about the role architecture must play in the world around us. Just as buildings are designed, so are networks of communication, networks of infrastructure and strategies for problem solving. Many other "non-traditional" agendas need the creative and innovative thought processes that designers employ. Many of these systems are failing right before our eyes because of this missing link. The 35W bridge collapse, the financial and housing markets crashing, natural tragedies in Haiti, Pakistan and China, the gulf oil spill. All of these misfortunes could have benefited from an abductive way of thinking. That is, not deducting or inducting facts, but thinking more broadly and critically. No one is perfect and failures happen. Nonetheless, something needs to change. Architecture plays a major role in this global shift.