Master´s Thesis 2020 Urban Challenges

Jan Dankmeyer

Resilient Strategies for a Child-responsive City

“In many ways, the environmental crisis is a design crisis. It is a consequence of how things are made, buildings are constructed, and landscapes are used. Design manifests culture, and culture rests firmly on the foundation of what we believe to be true about the world.

Van der Ryn & Cowan, 1996 as cited in Taylor, 2009, p. 50)

Based on the theoretical research for this thesis, generic and site-specific principles were developed to create a learning landscape for children. The design principles are divided into generic and site-specific strategies. The generic strategies focus on the children’s perspectives and environmental education and offer the potential to be translated and up-scaled into various contexts and locations in the world. The site-specific strategies result from the exploration of generic information. In this case, the site-specific design principles connect to sustainable and resilient urban water treatment which is Gothenburg’s urban challenge. In different contexts, other context-based challenges could become a tool for educating children about the environment, and thereby support social and environmental resilience.

The design strategies are segmented in 4 main categories which describe scale and level of application of theory in the design proposal: The Urban Context, The Playscape, The Water Cycle Pavilion and The Tectonics.

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