Making Architecture

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Department of Architecture and Spatial Planning. Faculty of Natural Resources and Spatial Sciences. Namibia University of Science and Technology.


How do we educate young architects to be not only technically literate professionals but also critical citizens able to question their role as professionals in the post-colonial context of Namibia? This is a major challenge for the relatively young Department of Architecture and Spatial Planning, established only in 2010 at the then NUST and currently Namibia University of Science and Technology. The validation of the undergraduate programs by the Namibia Council of Architects and Quantity Surveyors in 2016 allowed for some introspection and guided the review of the curricula in the long term process of de-constructing dominant narratives of western architectural and urban theory and re-building them from a more situated perspective. More immediately and practically, the type of projects students are tasked with in design studios must reflect contemporary, socially relevant challenges. Instead of considering projects for informal economies, or housing upgrading and neighbourhood re-blocking as incidental interventions, we realize that such projects will provide major challenges for future architects and other spatial practitioners. Such projects require serious engagement with user communities and the development of methods and tools that transcend the classical representational techniques of architects, in order to co-produce spatial interventions with non-expert stakeholders within a complex field of social, cultural, economic and political dynamics. The sequence of architectural design studios within the undergraduate architecture programs has been developed over the past few years and was consolidated in the current curriculum review. Beginning with exercises on abstract space andstructural understanding in semester 1, students explore the interrelationship between form, volume, structure, materials and basic human spatial and functional requirements without the constraints of context.



Ombaka, Architecture, design,


Lühl, Phillip. (2017). Making Architecture:Namibia University of Science and Technology 2016 first year architecture student projects for a place of learning in Ombaka, Kaoko Region, Namibia. Windhoek, Namibia: Namibia University of Science and Technology