The social role of architecture, its value and purpose in our everyday lives and how it might be considered and used as a positive tool in our health and well-being is a discussion which lacks focus and direction in Ireland. At a political and policy level economic imperatives continue to dominate discussions on our built environment. In 2014 we have already seen the strident and explicit re-emergence of a national social housing policy that vitally depends on a private construction industry for success, with any meaningful discussion on the social potential of design and building being clearly avoided.
However there is an emerging strand of thinking, practice, pedagogy and research across all-Ireland which taken together, is starting to examine the purpose and role of architecture and the architect in contemporary society. The purpose of this session is to gather research and researchers on socially responsible design in order to build a collective platform for future work, advocacy and change.
This session therefore seeks papers concerned with the relationship between architecture and society and our everyday life, to offer some focus and direction and coalition of ideas on this urgent and critical direction in architecture and built environment.
Session chairs: Emmett Scanlon, University College Dublin; emmett.scanlon[at]ucd.ie and Nuala Flood, Queens University Belfast; n.flood[at]qub.ac.uk