Rebuilding in Ranongga : reflecting on practice based research

Slater, Hannah & Caldwell, Glenda Amayo (2013) Rebuilding in Ranongga : reflecting on practice based research. In Ramirez-Lovering, Diego, Alexander, Jacqui, & Fairley, Alison (Eds.) Proceedings of the 7th International Conference of the Association of Architecture Schools of Australasia, The Association of Architecture Schools of Australasia, Melbourne, Australia, pp. 271-287.

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Two hundred million people are displaced annually due to natural disasters with a further one billion living in inadequate conditions in urban areas. Architects have a responsibility to respond to this statistic as the effects of natural and social disasters become more visibly catastrophic when paired with population rise. The research discussed in this paper initially questions and considers how digital tools can be employed to enhance rebuilding processes, but still achieve sensitive, culturally appropriate and accepted built solutions. Secondly the paper reflects on the impact ‘real-world’ projects have on architectural education.

Research aspirations encouraged an atypical ‘research by design’ methodology involving a focused case study in the recently devastated village Keigold, Ranongga, Solomon Islands. Through this qualitative approach specific place data and the accounts of those affected were documented through naturalistic and archival methods of observation and participation. Findings reveal a number of unanticipated results which would have been otherwise undetected if field research within the design and rebuilding process was not undertaken, reflecting the importance of place specific research in the design process. Ultimately, the study proves that it is critical for issues of disaster to be addressed on a local rather than global scale; decisions cannot be speculative, or solved at a distance, but require intensive collaborative work with communities to achieve optimum solutions. Architectural education and design studios would continue to benefit from focused community engagement and field research within the design process.

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ID Code: 65389
Item Type: Conference Paper
Refereed: Yes
Additional URLs:
Keywords: Architectural Education, Design Studio, Digital tools, Post-disaster reconstruction, Solomon Islands
ISBN: 978-1-921994-29-6
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > BUILT ENVIRONMENT AND DESIGN (120000)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > BUILT ENVIRONMENT AND DESIGN (120000) > ARCHITECTURE (120100)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Creative Industries Faculty
Copyright Owner: © 2013 The Association of Architecture Schools of Australasia
Copyright Statement: The papers in this book comprise the proceedings of the meeting mentioned on the cover and title page.
They reflect the authors’ opinions and, in the interests of timely dissemination, are published as
presented and without change. Their inclusion in this publication does not necessarily constitute
endorsement by the editors or The Association of Architecture Schools of Australasia.
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Deposited On: 16 Dec 2013 02:16
Last Modified: 19 Jul 2017 05:07

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