This House Believes the Value of Design is Not Measureable

Can the unquantifiable qualities of design compete during a downturn?

This House Believes the Value of Design is Not Measureable Event

Tuesday 15 February 2011

This debate, taking place at the Surface Design Show 2011, will question the value of the immeasurable aspects of design against the more quantifiable, such as cost and sustainability. We will ask whether the drive towards sustainability and low cost building has bred a generation of cautious designers whose visionary ideals have been lost to socially responsible design and number crunching. Is the era of design for design’s sake over? Are we ethically bound to move towards the aesthetic austerity associated with economic responsibility, or can we still encourage the unfettered extravagance of boom times? Is it a case of either/or, or can we have the best of both worlds? Is austerity necessarily a bad thing? Is good design an unaffordable luxury? Is “frumpitecture” and “new puritanism” a sign of the times, or simply a stylistic movement? Are bad architects hiding behind the banner of sustainability as justification for poor design?


For the Motion
Professor Robert Adam, Adam Architecture
Denise Chevin, Journalist and former Editor of Building Magazine

Against the Motion
Patrik Schumacher, Zaha Hadid Architects
Professor Bill Hillier, Space Syntax

Registration Details

To register for your complimentary ticket, which includes entry to the whole show, please email, and provide your full name, job title, company and address.

Start Date:

Tuesday 15 February 2011 6.30pm

End Date:

Tuesday 15 February 2011 9.00pm

Event Address:

Business Design Centre

52 Upper Street, Islington, LONDON, N1 0QH, United Kingdom

Event fee:

Free, but registration is essential, see above.


Surface Design Show

Surface Design Show 2011