Lyndsey Scofield (This Big City): One of the things that is clear is that we really have to rethink how our cities are built, and rethink sustainability in a large way. But obviously there are a lot of political issues in actually getting that accomplished and changing these things systematically. Will you also be tackling that idea and preparing students for the realities of the world?
Aseem Inam (Director of the MA Theories of Urban Practice at the New School for Design): What’s interesting is both Miguel and I come, separately, from years of practice. We’ve done a lot of work all over the world, and one of the things I find we have in common is we know that politics is absolutely the heart and soul of what might seem like design projects because it’s about who makes decisions, who has more power and influence than others to shape cities. Designers typically either run away from or ignore politics and political structures, and that’s impossible if you want to have any impact. You need to understand it, and you need to, A), understand the political structures, why decisions are made in certain ways and not others, B), embrace it, not be afraid of it, and C), probably most importantly, challenge it.
Okay, this interview reassures me in my decision to double major in Architectural Studies and International Relations, but I’ll probably start doubting it again tomorrow. *Sigh* There’s too much I want to learn!
Link to the full interview