This House Believes Politics not Design is to Blame for Broken Places

Where does the culpability really lie?

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With contributions from Nick Johnson – Deputy Chief Executive Urban Splash, John Thompson – John Thompson Partnership and Chairman for the Academy of Urbanism

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Owen Hatherly – Academic and Columnist for BD and the New Statesman and Stephen Hill – Director of C20 Futureplanners

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15th April 2010

LISTEN TO PODCASTS

NICK JOHNSON
JOHN THOMPSON
OWEN HATHERLY
STEPHEN HILL

Are places and buildings responsible for social problems, or does fault lie with the political and planning processes that create these spaces? Today’s planning system is predicated on short-term political thinking and a reliance on popularist agendas to design public spaces and buildings; and the proliferation of quangos in the past 13 years has both vastly complicated the decision-making in the planning process and obscured accountability within it.

Will new localist agendas and their advocates – which claim to bring more power to the local level by scrapping regional powers – be the answer to our problems or will it simply lead to a more centralised Government? Or should we look to architects and urban designers to carry the responsibility of fractured communities? How will a new Government impact on the built environment profession’s ability to provide successful places that foster community cohesion?

Building Futures and DEMOS present an evening of exciting discussion in the lead up to the general elections.

For more information on this debate contact: BuildingFutures@riba.org

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