Teaching community engagement at the Bartlett
September 2019
By Mellis Haward

Archio is back at the Bartlett (University College London) and we’re leading a design unit that will explore micro and macro themes around home, identity and community. We will take our experience in housing and particularly our focus on community engagement to investigate ways we can better listen and respond to local people from a broad range of backgrounds. We believe that how you communicate is as important as what you design.

The unit will engage with people outside architecture who are commissioning housing and community projects, writing policy and shaping government strategy. They will be our critics, advisors and participate in workshops and site visits. Many of these people have backgrounds in design but could now be said to be practicing though nontraditional means. 

The end result of this project will lead to the creation of a tool for communication. We recognise that architects must never stop listening and learning. We can research local, national and international architecture for inspiration but ultimately housing needs to serve the people that occupy it and they must feel they have a sense of ownership of it.


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