“There’s a steep learning curve ahead, but architects are all figuring out together how to make public interest design a habit, rather than a sideline.”

What are the future models for practicing public interest design? How will the profession support it as a career choice?

In a recent article earlier this month, Residential Architect explored this question through a series of profiles and interviews with leading architects and practitioners in this field. “Public interest design–which focuses on the needs of the community rather than the individual–is not new, but the next generation of designers sees it as integral to practice.”

Among those cited in the article is  Sergio Palleroni of the BaSiC Initiative, one of our visiting professors from 2010-11 and who will be joining us again next fall. Palleroni says, “I think there’s a sense that things aren’t well. There’s homelessness, poor housing, and we no longer fund schools adequately in this anti-tax climate. Students used to want to see beautiful projects, but now the first question is ‘How do the finances work?’ Don’t tell me stories, tell me how to do it. It’s a huge change from when I started to teach 30 years ago.”

Other cited in the article include Katie Swenson of Enterprise Community Partners; Meg Brown of Perkins+Will, John Cary of Public Interest Design, Michael Murphy and Alan Ricks of MASS Design Group, Bryan Bell of Design Corps, and more.

Click here to read “Blazing Trails: A dedication to social justice propels today’s young professionals,” at ResidentialArchitect.com.

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