The Profession of Architecture

Topics: Architecture, Natural hazard, Nature Pages: 7 (2124 words) Published: August 13, 2012
Write an argumentative essay of at least 2000 words on an issue related to the role of the profession of Architecture or Interior Architects

The role in architecture in order to combat the possibility of natural disasters is varied when it comes to rebuilding and housing before, after and during the natural disasters. Their essential knowledge and invaluable skills about, building materials, design and attention to detail is imperative in the prevention of damage to buildings. However, unless the architect’s role begins to change similarly to keep up with our changing environment, buildings today can’t withstand the increase number of natural disasters, which our world today is coming to terms with. Natural disasters being, “changes which are so great they may cause damage to the shape of the land or to the lives of people and other living things.” (What are natural disasters?, Primary Resources.) The effects of climate change including extreme temperatures, flooding and droughts and intense heat waves, are causing a greater number of natural disasters. The strong link between architects and the effects of broken housing and infrastructure after natural disasters is all too common. The role of the architect is mainly thought of as being essential in the direct providing of emergency assistance however their role has changed over time to seeing the general plan formulated prior to disasters (Aquilino, 2012.) In rebuilding though it is important for architects and clients to be open for change including adapting new building codes and education to others in the community, whilst keeping with the appropriate culture and atmosphere which would have once existed. Architects play an important role in making homes viable and functional after restoration.

It can be argued that architects contribute to only three percent of the worlds built environment, therefore it is not solely their responsibility (Alexander, 2002.) However if the blame keeps shifting from who is responsible it is wasting time and is predicted to force millions of people of the verge of eco-refuge, a condition that poses a real threat to human security as people are forced to migrate. Eco- refuge is a problem leading to homelessness, causing ill health and financial troubles for those affected. Emergency housing has being developed post disasters to provide for these people however these temporary homes in which people are forced to live in are culturally unacceptable, lacking in poor hygiene standards and temporary shelters and housing do not have any architectural basis. Experts are finding that these natural hazards are increasing yearly and in severity and the ability to protect these communities once a disaster strikes becomes nearly impossible. These shelters now require architectural design and technological support due to the extended period of time required for use. Thousands of organisations worldwide respond to catastrophe, some providing emergency and transitional shelters while others build permanent homes. The lack of coordinated response draws out this process for the citizens. The rush to complete mandates and donor priorities lead to weak coordination and fragmented knowledge and combine with the disregard for environmental health characterize the failed practices that prevail after a disaster. This is the call for the crucial immediate need for architects- along with other built-environment professionals to bring training, competency and ingenuity to disaster risk prevention, migration, response and recovery are needed. Architects in conjunction with planners must engage in a broader conversation, among the expertise in humanitarian aid, anthropologies, conversation, ecologists, bankers and economists, structural engineers, public health officials, surveyors and within the context of policy makers and communities. These groups need to know where to put their confidence and practitioners including architects must guard against the...

References: Aquilino, Marie J. 2012. Beyond Shelter: Architecture and Human Dignity.
New York: Metropolis Books
Pogrebin, Robin. 2007. “Brad Pitt Commissions Designs for New Orleans.” The New ccccccYork Times. (Accessed 14 March 2012)

van Schaik, Leon, Geoffry London, Beth George. 2010. Producing Innovative
Orientated Architecture for Decision Support Systems in Environemntal Crisis Management. Science Direct Online. 28 (3): 593-599. (Accessed 1 April 2012)

Vinnitskaya, Irina. 2012. Arch daily: Eco- Temporary Refuge/ CimniArchitettura,
Accessed 1 April,
About The AIA, The Changing Role of Architects in Disaster Response, (Accessed 14 March 2012) (Accessed 1 April 2012)
What are Natural Disasters? Primary Resources, (Accessed 1 April 2012)
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