Featured Articles | The Plan Journal
 Open Access
Position Paper

Human Time as a Resource: Twelve Strategies for Re-thinking Urban Materiality

by: Anupama Kundoo VOLUME 6/2021 - Issue 2 [The Good Material], Pages: 305 - 322 published: 2021-11-30
 Open Access

Baukultur in a Cybernetic Age: A Conversation

by: Michael A. Arbib , Meredith Banasiak , Bob Condia , Colin Ellard , Jonathan Enns , Melissa Farling , Robert Lamb Hart , Richard Hassell , Eduardo Macagno , Harry Mallgrave , Fred Marks , Juhani Pallasmaa , Sarah Robinson VOLUME 6/2021 - Issue 1 , Pages: 7 - 28 published: 2021-05-14

We received and we gladly publish this conversation among distinguished theorists and scholars on an important topic, also aligned with the cross-disciplinary mission of our journal. [MS]


ABSTRACT - The article offers a multi-author conversation charting the future of architecture in light of the apparent tension between Baukultur, which combines the culture of building and the building of this culture, and the rapid changes brought about by digital technology, embracing cybernetics and artificial intelligence. The article builds on a discussion of Baukultur to debate in what sense buildings are “machines for living in,” then examines neuromorphic architecture wherein cybernetic mechanisms help buildings sense the needs of their occupants. It closes with an example of a building complex, Kampung Admiralty, that combines cybernetic opportunities with a pioneering approach to building “community and biophilia” into our cities. This article interleaves an abridged version of Michael Arbib’s (2019) article “Baukultur in a Cybernetic Age,” 1 with extensive comments by the co-authors.

 Open Access
Position Paper

Gender Matters. The Grand Architectural Revolution

by: Dörte Kuhlmann, Guest-Editor VOLUME 4/2019 - Issue 2 [GENDER MATTERS], Pages: 273 - 279 published: 2020-02-07
 Subscribers only

Japanese Architecture Returns to Nature: Sou Fujimoto in Context

by: Botond Bognar VOLUME 7/2022 - Issue 1 , Pages: 7 - 36 published: 2022-05-16

We received and we gladly publish a contribution by distinguished author Prof. Botond Bognar. [MS]


ABSTRACT - The essay introduces the development of Sou Fujimoto’s architecture as it has been influenced by various sources and experiences leading to his recently completed and highly recognized major project, the  House of Hungarian Music in Budapest. Among these influences the contemporary economic and political conditions in Japan and beyond, as well as the nature-inspired work of prominent Japanese designers are discussed. Touching upon the seminal work by Tadao Ando and Toyo Ito, the essay also highlights the contrasts and occasional similarities between the so-called “White School” and “Red School” in contemporary Japanese architecture, in referencing nature as the primary source of their designs. Today, these “schools” are best represented, respectively, by the activities of SANAA and Kengo Kuma. Although Fujimoto’s architecture is clearly derivative and part of the radically minimalist White School, the House of Hungarian Music reveals an intimacy and richness 

in articulating its relationship to the surrounding natural environment, which quality, if perhaps momentarily, points beyond the minimalism of the “Whites.”

 Open Access

Public Health Themes in Survival Through Design: A Son’s Appreciation

by: Raymond Richard Neutra VOLUME 5/2020 - Issue 2 [HEALTHY URBANISM], Pages: 289 - 295 published: 2020-11-23
 Subscribers only

Magic Circles: The New Arks

by: Alberto Francini , Fabrizio Mangiaveti VOLUME 5/2020 - Issue 2 [HEALTHY URBANISM], Pages: 297 - 310 published: 2021-01-13

This article presents a project vision whose aim is to underline the necessity to completely change the current world narrative and start a new one, fully compatible with the protection of the planet and all its inhabitants. The authors started from the meaning of “device” and its role in this new narrative: a new salvific “ark,” an ecological living machine able to restore the balance between the forms of anthropization and the planet. The New Arks replace the current crystallized devices, unable to efficiently answer to the needed shift, in order to preserve the human systems, attacked by new social, ecological, and health diseases. In this vision, within the New Arks human beings regain the “lost paradise” through changes such as the implementation of green areas and biodiversity, less housing density, eco-friendly mobility, energy supply and technologies, and sustainable agricultural production. The outcome of this vision suggests the birth of a “Neoland,” a transformed world system in which the union between the natural accident and the anthropic genesis leads to the start of a new ethical and ecological narrative.

 Open Access
Book Review

"Modern and Site Specific: The Architecture of Gino Valle 1945-2003"

by: Kenneth Frampton VOLUME 4/2019 - Issue 1 , Pages: 223 - 226 published: 2019-07-16




Modern and Site Specific:      

The Architecture of Gino Valle 1945-2003

By Pierre-Alain Croset and Luka Skansi

London: Lund Humphries, 2018

250 × 190 mm 

100 b/w and 150 color illustrations 

352 pages

£50.00 GBP (hardcover)

ISBN: 978-1848222779  


 Open Access
Book Review

On Race and Modern Architecture

by: Diane Ghirardo VOLUME 6/2021 - Issue 1 , Pages: 277 - 284 published: 2021-06-04



Race and Modern Architecture.

A Critical History from the Enlightenment to the Present

By Irene Cheng, Charles L. Davis II, and Mabel O. Wilson, eds Pittsburgh PA, USA: University of Pittsburgh Press, 2020

7 x 10 in. [17,8 x 25,4 cm]

96 b&w illustrations

424 pages

 $45 paperback

July, 2020

ISBN: 978-082 296 6593



Building Character. The Racial Politics of Modern Architectural Style

By Charles L. Davis II

Pittsburg PA, USA: University of Pittsburgh Press, 2019

7 x 10 in. [17,8 x 25,4 cm] 

89 b&w illustrations, 12 color plates

320 pages

$55 hardcover

December, 2019

ISBN: 978-0822945550


 Subscribers only

The Diversity of Women’s Engagement with Modern Architecture and Design: Three Case Studies

by: Kathleen James-Chakraborty VOLUME 4/2019 - Issue 2 [GENDER MATTERS], Pages: 465 - 480 published: 2020-01-31

A range of often overlooked ways of engaging with architecture and design have historically offered women from around the world with the means of making a living and of advancing the careers of other women, as well as of encouraging the acceptance of artistic experimentation. These include journalism, retailing, and philanthropy. For instance, Ethel Power edited the influential American shelter magazine House Beautiful from 1923-34. Estrid Ericson founded and ran the Stockholm design shop Svensk Tenn for over half a century; she also designed many of its characteristic products. Gira Sarabhai was instrumental in the establishment of the Calico Museum and then the National Academy of Design, both located in her native Ahmedabad, India, and contributed to the design of the building in which the latter is housed. Writing such achievements back into the history of architecture and design helps provide the foundation for a more inclusive approach to those professions today.

 Subscribers only

Office for A.T.E. Enterprises, Ahmedabad, India

by: Rahul Mehrotra VOLUME 4/2019 - Issue 1 , Pages: 17 - 30 published: 2019-06-06

The new office building of the A.T.E. Group – a cutting-edge engineering group based in the outskirts of Ahmedabad (India) along the Delhi-Ahmedabad highway – works as an extension to its adjacent existing factory. Diversifying from the ordinary existing factory shed scenery, the building uses technological innovation and landscape as key elements to serve both as an aesthetic surface and a performative office space. Through multiple layers of natural cooling techniques embedded in and wrapping around occupied spaces, the corporate office works in partnership with the seasonal and climatic flows. Indoor and outdoor spaces flow into each other as well as both the existing factory and the new office complex are fluidly embedded within the surrounding landscape. With low carbon footprint and minimal use of active energy, the building creates comfortable environmental conditions while countering the local conditions of extreme heat, dryness, and variations in temperature through the day and year.