Where in the world, as a young architect, would be the best country to find a job in an architecture firm?
Last week, we decided to pose this question and crowd-source our readers’ intelligence for the answer. We received almost 200 comments from ArchDaily readers and Facebook fans all over the globe about the current employment opportunities, design culture, and wages in their respective countries. With many economies experiencing crippling Recession, and recent Architecture graduates suffering most, you’ve helped us generate a vital conversation.
Find out the 9 countries that made the cut after the break. Some may just surprise you…
China’s economy is slowing down. It’s projected growth rate is set to dip down to as low as a modest 6% versus the jaw-dropping double-digit rates of the past decade or more. In March, the government set its growth target for 2012 at 7.5%. It must be remembered that this is no accident. It is a calculated move. In the most recent five-year plan this general cooling-down is part of China’s strategy to avoid the sort of economic meltdown that hit the U.S. in 2008. They read the tea leaves and decided to take measures, as they can in a centrally-controlled economy, to ensure steady, modest growth rather than bubble-producing frenetic growth. Political stability is a huge factor in this. The communist party maintains its mandate as long as the engines of the economy continue to hum relatively smoothly.
Why the slow down? According to a recent special report in The Economist, nearly 48% of China’s GDP in 2011 was dominated by internal investment in infrastructure and city building. This should come as no surprise to foreign architects who have been riding this wave for the last twenty years or so. The scary part of this number is that most of this investment is being done by state owned enterprises (SOES) operating under artificially favorable conditions. On top of this, according to the ratings agency, Fitch, lending has jumped from 122% of GDP in 2008 to 171% in 2011. This “surge in credit” is strikingly familiar because it looks like the beginnings of America’s financial crisis. As The Economist notes, “When Fitch plugged China’s figures into its disaster warning system (the “macroprudential risk indicator”), the model suggested a 60% chance of a banking crisis by the middle of next year.”
The ‘Sur Mesure’ Sticker Installation, designed by FREAKS freearchitects, was placed onto the facade of Oscar Niemeyer’s Building for French Communist Party Headquarters in Paris this past December. Known forNiemeyer’s simple construction without ornament, the installation creates a simple, yet interesting addition to the building for people around the city. Completed in the early 1980′s, the intention of letting it “breathe” to the city and not break the site generates an open space district with its undulating forms. This then mirrors the continuity of the urban fabric of the neighborhood and frames the plaza. The video shows the process of installing the immense sticker onto the facade. More images of the installation can be viewed after the break.
Richard Meier & Partners recently announced the first retrospective exhibition in Mexico City presented at the Museo de Arte Carrillo Gil on display now until August 26. Exhibiting some of the most emblematic works of renowned architect Richard Meier make it possible to view his design philosophy as a whole and in depth. The retrospective includes a selection of models, original sketches, renderings and photographs. Some of the iconic projects exhibited on the show include the Smith House, The Getty Center, The Neugebauer Residence and the Jubilee Church. More information on the exhibition after the break.
The proposal by PlaC (Plateaux Collaborative)… for the Badel Block complex implements an alternative model of urban regeneration. In being sensible to local conditions and open to extra-territorial economic dynamics, equality and the balancing effect become the key-qualities of what
Steven Holl and Norman Foster have been chosen to design the next two Maggie’s Cancer Caring Centers in the United Kingdom. As reported by bdonline, Foster will design in his hometown of south Manchester at the Christie hospital, while Holl will design at the St. Bartholomew’s (Barts) hospital in London. This will be Holl’s second UK project, following the Glasgow School of Art.
Continue reading for more information.
By Steve Sanderson
The following Practice 2.0 article is an edited transcript from a presentation that Steve gave at the Intersections: Building Interdisciplinary Pedagogy | Building Integrated Practice symposium organized by the New York City College of Technology.
I’m happy to see so many familiar faces and honored to be included with such an esteemed panel. In fact I feel a bit under-qualified. If my Google searches serve me well, all of my fellow panelists have both undergraduate and advanced degrees in architecture and have held noted academic positions for several years. I, on the other hand, pursued a “non-traditional” path into the industry by first studying interior design then industrial design to doing one year of a MArch program and finally receiving a ME from John’s program at Stevens.
Four innovative towers in Canada, Qatar, Australia and Italy have named the best tall buildings in the world for 2012 by the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat (CTBUH), the international not-for-profit association. These towers demonstrate the continued renaissance of tall building development worldwide, as a record number of 88 tall buildings soaring over 200 meters were completed in 2011, compared to 32 buildings in 2005. Another 96 tall buildings are projected to compete this year, with China being the largest contributor.
The four regional winners include the Absolute Towers in Mississauga, Canada (Americas); 1 Bligh Street, Sydney (Asia and Australia); Palazzo Lombardia, Milan (Europe); and Doha Tower in Doha, Qatar (Middle East and Africa). Additionally, Al Bahar Towers in Abu Dhabi won the CTBUH’s first Innovation Award for the project’s computer sun-screen.
“The winners display remarkable creativity, as well as a respect for the environment, connection with place, and the urban surroundings,” said Richard Cook, awards committee chairman and founding partner of Cook+Fox Architects.
Continue after the break to learn more.