Design Research in Search of Direction in Architecture Pedagogy & Practice


  • Mitra Kanaani NewSchool of Architecture and Design
  • David Kopec NewSchool of Architecture and Design
  • Linda Thomas-Mobley NewSchool of Architecture and Design



pedagogy, research, liability, change


This paper examines the question: should the design process as currently taught and practiced in architecture be modified to incorporate scientific research? Scientific inquiry informing design allows architects think broadly and assume responsibly for developing building designs that are knowledge-driven. Scientific methodology can be used to ensure that a design is adaptable and integrative within its context as well as perform technically, contribute socially, and remain economically feasible. Does this practice currently exists and if not will architects expose them to greater liability? The general standard in architectural liability is one of "reasonable care.” Individuals performing architectural services are performing professional services; the law imposes upon such persons the duty to exercise a reasonable degree of skill and care, as determined by the standard ordinarily employed in the local community. If the community standards evolve, then it follows that the standards for individual architects would evolve. Changes in an architect's standard of care should be carefully considered before any major shift in design practice, but arguably, the use of scientific research, which brings with it the ability of the architect to use measurable outcomes to inform the final design, may possibly be the best defense in the event of a dispute.




How to Cite

Kanaani, M., Kopec, D., & Thomas-Mobley, L. (2014). Design Research in Search of Direction in Architecture Pedagogy & Practice. ARCC Conference Repository.