It is rewarding to accomplish to build in environments where resources are scarce and the need for development is pressing. But do the projects really have an impact for sustainable development?
What kind of efforts give the best outcome? Is time as crucial to the end result as financial investment? How to measure and evaluate the end result properly?
Often the self-initiated projects require stepping outside the conventional role of an architect. The involved parties – Northern architects, NGO ́s and local users – often have different expectations regarding the involvement of the designer. Is it mainly a spatial problem that needs to be solved? Or is the architect also involved in project management and engineering? The range within these projects can, and does, vary a lot. The same goes for time investment. Some work fast, others spend years at the site.
“I believe the responsibility that comes along with the work of an architect is the same everywhere, regardless of location.
In principle, there is no difference between working in the north and in the south. however, due to the nature of development related projects, the social aspects are usually stronger. working in various cultural environments will actually teach you to understand your own culture in a deeper manner.”
Komitu's Kouk Khleang Youth Center
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