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World in View: Can we physically design the future for better social equity?

  • Thursday, February 24, 2022
  • 12:00 PM- 1:30 PM
  • Zoom link will be provided

A World in View discussion led by Dr. Alexandra Staub (Penn State) and Dr. Bülent Batuman (Bilkent University; Ankara, Turkey )

Our built environment exists at several interlocked scales: individual buildings shelter us, represent our aspirations, and mark our perceived place in the world; neighborhood systems offer identity and in the best case a sense of community, while cities connect us to larger needs such as economic opportunities, education, and health and recreation.

Planning the physical environment is left largely to certified professionals, whose background and training are often technical rather than rooted in epistemic standards derived from conditions of humanity. Put another way, the professionalization of the process by which we shape our built environment has gone hand in hand with a critical loss of regard based on an understanding of history, and acknowledgement of social patterns or current social needs.

The proposed discussion session will examine the role that everyday stakeholders can play in physically shaping our future, and with it the framework for cultural expression. The talk will examine how broadening the definition of design considerations can lead to stakeholder agency and better social equity. Please complete this reading ahead of the discussion.

Drs. Staub and Batuman have collaborated on projects and publications since 2017, when Prof. Batuman was a Fulbright Fellow at Penn State. Dr. Batuman is an architectural historian with a deep awareness of how building processes have shaped cultural mores. Dr. Staub’s research has for many years examined how our built environment contributes to, and is shaped by, our understanding of culture and power structures.

Please note: You will be asked to complete a short reading before the discussion. Registration for events in this series is required and, given the topics and speakers, we anticipate interest to be high. Event is limited to 25 students with preference to Schreyer Scholars; early registration is strongly encouraged. To enhance your online engagement experience, video presence is strongly encouraged and recommended. Scholar attendees will receive a complimentary electronic gift card.

Event Contact

Sarah Lyall-Combs
Schreyer Scholar Lisa Gardner

Schreyer is unique because it provides you with a supportive community of people. The staff help guide you through all the resources and experiences Penn State has to offer and the college provides you with the funding to make them happen.

Lisa Gardner '19 Mechanical Engineering

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