Common Property

Re-thinking property:

The rise of economic inequality is challenging the peaceful inhabitation of cities affecting not only the dispossessed but affecting the economy at large. In Chile, a country that was an experimental playground for neoliberal economics prior to their implementation in the US and the UK by Reagan and Thatcher respectively, we can observe a global collapse of a social contract, where citizens are forced to get into debt to buy food surrendering any economic autonomy. The extreme form of market deregulation that was set in practice in Chile foreshadows the economic challenges of many countries in the western world.

The experimental deregulation of markets had a profound impact on the value of assets setting in motion an escalation of property value and asset accumulation that further exacerbates the difference between those who have and those who don’t. This thesis studio will set in motion a new form of speculative economics, one that would aim to think of architecture within alternative property structures. By rethinking private property and in particular land and real estate assets not as an investment but rather as social welfare that contributes to the production of common value.

Production of the Commons:

The thesis studio will participate in a protocol of production and dissemination of knowledge that can contribute to a common pool of design speculations regarding the challenges of our current economic system. The projects will be thought of as open-source blueprints for alternative models of governance. Beyond political partisan affiliations, the role of design will be seen as a tool for expanding the possibility space of architectural organizations, moving away from strategies of capital gains that have generated the current housing crisis.
Faculty Advisor:
Jose Sanchez