Basdiplom Social Antr Essay Laura Ve

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  • 1. About habits and the resistance to change them... What makes us change our routines and tories and housing which would normally shopping, clubbing etc. Short way to the behavior in everyday life? be prohibited by functional town-planning light rail, good bike lanes, accessible pe- We know it is smart to recycle our waste, theories. Ordinarily a factory should be destrian paths etc. but still quite many I know only have one located far away from housing, but I think dust bin under their kitchen sink, when that only by living with the factory can we Making it more time-consuming to use one could have one each for plastic, or- control its pollution. If we needed a big the car rather than going by bike, public ganic waste, paper, batteries, metal/ atomic power station we should build one transportation or walk. glass, etc. right in the center of Tokyo. There you We know driving to work in our car alone can see it and feel its output and only Mixed neighborhoods with workspace, is very bad for air quality. We can even then does it really come into people’s shops, schools, kindergartens, parks and see the direct impact it has to our en- consciousness. Under these conditions a large variety in apartment size and vironment here in Bergen in wintertime, we might be able to control what’s going standard can be strategic solutions to at- and still we do it. on around us and take action concerning tract people to live their everyday life lo- such things as power stations. This is the cally, and to live there for a longer time, P. Bourdieu describes people as results of basic idea of symbiosis – the very antith- which again can strengthen the neighbor- their environment from when they grew esis of Functionalism.” hoods in a positive way. up. This environment decides how we look at our surroundings as adults. “What What Kurokawa is implying, relates to the But the subject of changing our habits you learn without language (action) is theory of virtue ethics; we act according and the awareness of the results of our hard to unlearn with language (theory)”. to how the world is presented to us. action has a strong political aspect. (Mathias Kemton on “Architecture as a philosoph- So, maybe a mix of good role models and ical contribution to sustainability”) regulations is needed to change our hab- its and lower our lifes carbon footprint? Would we reuse and recycle more, and Or maybe we need to see a more accu- would we consume and buy less if our rate and direct result of our lifestyle in waste were processed in our neighbor- our closest environment, f ex having the hood? waste plant just around the corner from where we live? As an architect and a planner I am think- ing my contribution can be to design The Japanese architect Kisho Kurokawa accessible environments to make it puts it like this; easier for people to live easier lifes. Good space to move in when going to school, ”Let´s take the example of mixing fac- work, gym, band practice, sunbathing, Laura Ve_Social Anthropology Essay_Bergen School of Architecture 2010
  • 2. Moving from being part of their place in it as a complex system. Na- is a result of our sense of the tree. The nature to opposing it ture was ideal. To intervene to much in real objective world is tasteless, without Hjalmar Hegge has, as a philosopher, natures systems was called “hybris”, an smell or color. worked with the western cultures under- expression of arrogance (overmot). By disconnecting the human sensory ex- (freely translated from the text “Bærekraft og verdisyn – Arki- standing of nature in a historical perspec- tektur som grunnlag for en miljøetikk”, Universitetet i Bergen, perience to the relation to nature it put tive. His understanding of history builds våren 2009 by Mathias Kempton) man on the outside of nature, and the upon the assumption that visual cultural world. From being a part of the system changes must be seen in relation to cul- Through the Middle Ages and entering we have now placed ourselves opposed tural changes in awareness. our time our relation to nature changed. to our environment. A perception and separation of human as What we have generated and experienced ” (...) det som først og fremst forandrer subject on one side and nature as object our selves is what we relate best to. We seg i utviklingens løp, er menneskenes on the other rises, nature has become an experience and see the whole picture bevissthet, deres oppfattelsesmåter, object under mans domination. through small parts, and relate the small tanker og forestillinger. De ytre forhold- parts to the bigger picture. Presented to ene må altså sees i lys av denne foran- us in everyday life they become a part of dringen, og ikke omvendt.” our reality and our values, and form the basis of our way of life and the choices (eng:”what primarily changes in the run we make. of development, is the consciousness Based on this distanced and objectified of men, and their perception of ways, view we have developed on nature, may- thoughts and ideas. The external con- be this is also something we need to be- ditions must therefore be considered in come aware of and change to not become light of this change, and not vice versa”) victims of our own mentality. Viewing nature as an equal partner of Hegges main thesis can therefore be read existence. like this: the influence of mechanics on our world vision, developed during the The mentality has changed from a quali- renaissance, can be seen as a main cause tative to a quantitative perspective, a or origin of the environmental problems process of which the world is gradually we see today. He points out that already abstracted away from the human senso- in Ancient Greece one had the technical ry and mental experience, into scientific knowledge to see the industrial revolu- abstract analytical terms which becomes tion, but because of their world vision the “true” verifiable world. What is in na- and their relation to nature this never ture becomes true only by their assets happened. percepted by man. Smell and color is not The Greeks looked upon the world and a part of the object it self, f ex a tree, but photos from the movie “Home” Laura Ve_Social Anthropology Essay_Bergen School of Architecture 2010
  • 3. Four shapers of perception #The role models would go on an oil diet. Hopkins, who is trained in ecological de- Role models (person who serves as an sign, wrote the principal work on the sub- example, whose behavior is emulated by Inadvertently, I had made a film about ject, Transition Handbook: From Oil De- others) can have a strong effect on com- the relationship between a man and a pendency to Local Resilience, a 12-step munities today regarding “living green” woman, about those little power strug- manual for a post carbon future. as the green topic has become a modern gles that tug and pull within the family, trend. Ideas and practices can spread out and about balancing security with change, #The community-the “others” like rhizomatic structures. ideals with practicalities.” The opponent one can say to the role After Bourdieu´s theory of learning by models is the community. In good and doing (or having seen someone do it) Resilience leader bad manner for the environment. they have a strong impact on changing Rob Hopkins leads a vibrant new move- The collective knowledge, habits and the way we do things. ment of towns and cities that utilize lo- opinions is a challenging force to work cal cooperation and interdependence to with. “What the others say” can be a good Recipes of disaster: shrink their ecological footprints. In the and bad property to use in the name of One year without oil face of climate change he developed the new green life. Community pressure on John Webster the director of the movie concept of Transition Initiatives -- com- individuals is an ancient phenomenon “One year without oil” tells us; munities that produce their own goods and have helped changed and inhibited and services, curb the need for transpor- communities and societies forever and “Billy Wilder once said; “If you’re going to tation and take other measures to pre- still do. tell people the truth, be funny or they’ll pare for a post-oil future. While Transition Who will be the stronger shaper of atti- kill you”. shares certain principles with greenness tude and action for the future remains to and sustainability, it is a deeper vision se in history. When I began making the film in the concerned with re-imagining our future But development of the collective knowl- spring of 2005 I knew that climate change, in a self-sufficient way and building resil- edge takes place all the time, at least for most people, was a subject too awful iency. now when spreading information in the to think about. If they were going to sit Transforming theory to action, Hopkins media and internet, and the globalization through the film I would make, they had is also the cofounder and a resident of of the world. to be given a few laughs. the first Transition Initiative in the UK, in More people know more of the same in- Eventually I decided to focus the film on Totnes, Devon. As he refuses to fly, it is formation throughout the world. Neglect why it is so hard for people to change, from his home in Totnes that he offers can become more difficult as the poorer even when we know we have to. I put help to hundreds of similar communities countries also become more aware and myself and my family as the central char- that have sprung up around the world, in educated. acters in the film - we would change; we part through his blog, transitionculture.org Laura Ve_Social Anthropology Essay_Bergen School of Architecture 2010
  • 4. #The media Through the Norwegian Government we Magazines, newspapers, television, radio also have an institution, the Norwegian The worlds greenhouse gas emissions and the world wide web feeds us every Housing Bank (Husbanken) that works must be reduced by 50% to 85% 2050 to day with large amounts of information somehow as a political role model. achieve the goal of average temperature and contradicting facts. Since 1946 this organization has worked on earth not to rise more than 2 degrees The media will always talk in large words to support and develop new ideals regard- Celsius. to try to get our attention to sell their sto- ing housing and quality of life regarding On the 17th of February 2010 the gov- ry, but also those who scream the highest this sector. ernment of Norway presented the 2020 or sounds more clever will always win the In the beginning it concerned quality of plan (Klimakur2020) of Norways plan of attention of the media. How does this af- housing for families and supported devel- action to meet these demands. fect us dealing with this subject that need opment of this according to those days All together 160 suggestions is mentioned our attention so urgent (at least if we are standards they had developed. Later it in the document. going to green gas emissions with 80% has supported projects with good outdoor by 2050)? environments (green area, playgrounds, In one of the rapports they say; If emotion is the most important force in etc). Universal design or design for all life how do we connect it to reason? has been an important issue. The Hous- And if emotion is the strongest force have ing Bank has participated in developing “Need for increased level of knowledge we gone numb from all the cold facts and pilot projects of high value for the com- to change behavior turned off the empathy and mon interest and high standards through (....) underlines that the coherence of green connection to our environment? the projects to have its financial support. gas emissions, transportation, mobility and Pilestredet Park is one example of a proj- behavior is well documented. What seems to be the biggest challenge is to make this ect developed with high standard regard- #The government knowledge well known among the public and ing recycling/ waste management, heat- This institution of society will often be the decision makers/politicians. Only then ing, outdoor environment, etc. can it be premise rewarding when people the driving force in a community to make changes simply because it has the pos- makes their choices and politicians makes The new ZEB project (ZeroEmissions- their votes.” sibility to work out suggestions to regula- Building, based in Trondheim/NTNU) is tion and laws that every member of the another pilot project with support from community will have to obey. among others the Housing Bank that The weakness is of course that the mem- work to develop housing projects that bers of the government and their staff is test out new technologies and methods required to possess the right knowledge, to create a building mass that gives a and unless they are a majority govern- negative gas emission equation through ment in many cases they will have to the whole lifespan of the buildings (pro- compromise unless opponents agree on duction, transport, building, use/mainte- the same targets. nance, demolishing). Laura Ve_Social Anthropology Essay_Bergen School of Architecture 2010
  • 5. The accessibility of age family to have a “ecological footprint The dedicated or obedient? accessibility barometer” so that they could see the di- Pilestredet Park is one of the projects the Rory Sutherland in his speech on “Life rect impact of the choices they make at Norwegian housing Bank has been in- lessons from an ad man” (http://www.ted. all time? volved in the development of. com/talks/rory_sutherland_life_lessons_from_ Approximately 1500 to 2000 people live an_ad_man.html) he talks about the red- The motivation in money here, and the average age of the popula- button way of saving; If everyone had a Money do have an effect on us and the tion is higher compared to the other areas red button at home on our living room way we spend our time. Because time is in Oslo (30% 40+). This can indicate that wall that works like this; every time you money we have learned. it is well established people who decide to push it you save a little to your pension. If it was ridiculously expensive to by pet- by an apartment in this type of projects. Obviously you would save a lot more. rol we would definitely consider it smart Maybe because the price is higher. Me myself would save a fortune of money to by a car that did not use much, or any When developing the former hospital into by not buying so many books if it I didn´t of it, or to drop buying a car all together. a sustainable housing project several fac- have access to amazon on my computer. At least if it was easy to travel and get es of the process was included to be or- This I think describes the importance of from A to B without it. And here we touch ganized in a sustainable way. accessibility to change our lifestyle. If it is something of importance; choice and Reuse of material on site from buildings easy for us to get on the bus or light rail several factors in planning and motiva- demolished and land dug out, waste man- to where we are going, get what we need tion to change patterns. agement, open green areas surrounding from the local store, short way to drop of Another factor is direct impact or conse- the buildings with public the kids in school before we walk or bike quence illustrated in the car-sharing com- access, energy saving systems etc. to work etc. pany Zipcar (http://www.zipcar.com). The But good intentions in a project will never Is this the only way? 100 000 members share 3000 cars and be better than the end user of the build- Can it not be expected that we contribute has lowered their average yearly driving ings so what Statsbygg, the developer, more than to respond to what is right in distance from 12000 miles to 500. Why? did was to make a contract that under- front of us? Of course knowing WHY we Because, and this is the customers own contracters and people buying the apart- should choose to do it this way instead of reflections; the car costs 8-10 USD per ments had to sign before taking over the the other can be of importance. hour or 65USD a day. If one wants an ice property. cream one day one ask one self if it is re- These contracts contained a number of The power of oil ally worth the twelve to fifteen dollars its regulations regarding use, maintenance, Do I know the amount of oil I use and going to cost you and maybe one decide waste management etc. the ecological-footprint I leave behind to get the ice cream another day when through one year? No. you need the car for errands anyway. In this way you can say the end user ac- How many in Bergen knows? Quick response to consequence. tually by a lifestyle while buying an apart- Probably not so many. Kids in school ment. Choosing to buy a lifestyle one can taught about this? Not enough? say. Would it change the habits in an aver- Laura Ve_Social Anthropology Essay_Bergen School of Architecture 2010
  • 6. Oil dependency, bad There is hardly any structure less durable ping, band practice, workout, even walk- management and politics after global oil production peaks than the ing the dog! Yes, some people has been countless and endless American suburbs. observed “walking” their dog by car. The American way of life epitomizes the wasting of cheap energy. To build and live This way we are very little involved with in a sprawling suburb and to be totally our surrounding conditions, and under- dependent on cars is not a good position standing something you have little ex- to be in when heating (or air condition- perience with is challenging according to ing) becomes expensive and when driv- the previously described conditions. ing a car and maintaining a “thinned-out” infrastructure (electricity, water, roads) becomes prohibitively expensive. But these conditions are not only a result of desires of the population. photo from the movie “Home” In USA California there are strict and detailed zoning laws that prohibits com- Many are aware of the car society in mercial activities in residential areas (for America, but feels distant from it here in example neighborhood stores), which Norway. Maybe is it very different here, means that the nearest supermarket is at least in the cities of Norway better reg- usually located so far away that any other ulations has been made over the years options than owning and using a car is not to become totally car-dependent, but impossible. google photo showing Lagunen area outside Bergen center unfortunately there are quite many simi- larities. Looking at for example Straume or Apel- tun/ Lagunen area outside the city center of Bergen we find the same tendencies. Large areas for large commercial pro- grammes with large open spaces for park- ing around it, surrounded by large single houses with private gardens. The pedes- trian accessibility to public transportation and shops is poor. Distances and climatic conditions makes it too easy for too many to use their car Suburbia,photo from the movie “Home” for all destinations; work, school, shop- google photo showing Straume area outside Bergen center Laura Ve_Social Anthropology Essay_Bergen School of Architecture 2010
  • 7. Private car and social status? In the local paper Bergens Tidene (BT), On 18th of February BAF (Bergen Archi- there`s been published quite many ar- tects Association) goes out to its mem- ticles this winter on the traffic-situation bers encouraging them to sign a petition in this city. of concern regarding the development of On the 13th of February (2010) there is Danmarks plass; an article on the subject of companies “Environment, the situation can not withstand an urban development that contributes to in- rewarding their employees with bonuses creased traffic and more air pollution. A deterio- when they drive together to work, bike, ration of air quality is unacceptable. We do not walk or use collective transportations. want the building corridor along the highway to It works as a rewarding system by col- be extended so that the visual contact with the lecting bonus points rewarded at the end sea is reduced. of the year in a small sum of money. 3 points each way going by bike, 2 points Living Conditions Survey in Bergen (2008) each way by public transportation and 1 concluded that Danmarks Place / Solheim point each way for each person joining north is one of the worst places you can together in one car. The money in this is stay here in town. not big. But HiB students have examined the But it motivates people the employers tell matter on their own (published in BT us; the employees are eager to collect 20.aug.2009), and their results came the points. out a little differently. People in the area thrive. So maybe it is the competitor in us that needs stimulation to change our habits, This study tells us that the image the me- and the knowledge of the benefits is less dia and various studies gives us of a situ- important, or not important at all? ation can vary from the experience the Or is there an effect in this that one feel people living there have of a place. that one cannot end the year not having But this is not surprising, only interesting collected any “points” because it would and challenging when one wants to work be embarrassing to see the result and with communities and further develop- compare to our colleagues and be labeled ment of a situation. socially that you “did not give a damn” Working with knowledge and people, not about the common environment? on assumptions can make a huge differ- ence. The effort is easier to compare when it is measurable and official. Laura Ve_Social Anthropology Essay_Bergen School of Architecture 2010
  • 8. Will we change or will we adapt? Architects and engineers holds an impor- Politicians play an important role in this asked among ourselves, and the role tant role regarding reaching the goal of matter as they make decisions regarding models will possibly play a more impor- 50% to 80% reduction in GGE by 2050 all of us and has the regulating possibil- tant role. as they are involved in the building sectority to shape our behavior and to finacially where large amounts of energy potential- state what matters more. But then again Sustainability as a way of life, ly will be saved in the future. politician are people and some know as by choice or by regulation? But they also hold the possibility to make much about resilience, sustainability and some qualified choices for us in advance, environment as the man on the street, Is this the final question? before neighborhoods start to grow. concerned about what caught their atten- tion (by the media). “Green” as a trend vs “green life”. In planning we will be involved and have And lets face it; we get the politicians the possibility to lead the way to better elected that we voted for and often Change of mind, change of scale. solutions regarding transportation, con- people vote for more egoistic reasons nections, zoning and de-zoning. This will than their grandchildren or nature. somehow shape our everyday life in the Also still many have a very strong belief Laura Ve future. But it also gives a possibility to in the technology as the knight in shining Social Anthropology Essay change the way we will see our environ- armor. Bergen School of Architecture 2010 ment. So maybe the questions needs to be Social anthropology essay, DIPLOMA, Bergen School of Architecture 2010_Laura Ve : http://urbandevelopmentbergen.blogspot.com