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Reading #6

Discussion questions/keywords/summary from/of:

"In the Scheme of Things" by Thomas Fisher
pages 91-102, 115-122

Discussion Questions:

1.) In these chapters, there is an argument presented by Robert Gutman of Princeton University that architectural education should be removed from university affiliation. How could this affect the value of an architect?
2.) Thomas Fisher also presents that architects must learn to create under tight deadlines and speed the creative process. Do you agree or disagree with this? Should architects have more expandable creative time?


Keywords:

1.) "virtual" firm - A virtual firm is an organization that exists across a wide territory without having central office or even a central firm. It can be a strategic alliance or affiliation between several smaller firms or professionals to work together to compete on larger projects, share information, and achieve economic gain without being face to face.
2.) teaching office - The teaching office is an educational idea for architecture in which students would learn history and theory in school and then work under architects and teachers in select offices for credit. This would allow the office not to pay the students and would bring the educators and practitioners into close contact.


Summary:

These chapters discuss an unrest towards the education of the architect and his place in the world. According to Fisher, architectural practice has become one of the major design problems of our time. The duties of the architect and even the context around the architect have been demoted, resulting in architects adding less value to a project and "so commanding lower fees and less respect." Thus, there is a push for architects to become involved in all aspects of a building throughout its lifetime so that they can hold clients and gain major commissions. There is also a push for architects to re-establish their boundaries, gain a wide breadth of knowledge (yet still be able to specialize), and to begin offering more services. With this push on the architects, it is also presented that there is a desperate need to change the way that architects are educated. Fisher elaborates on the need for a greater relationship between architectural education and practice. In the stressful and pressured world of commissions and projects in an architectural firm, some balance needs to be reached between allowing students internships and education without risking the legality, competency, and profitability of the firm.