5 November 2019, 12:30 Room 01WEST620

Speaker: Sharon Wohl (Iowa State University)
Enact or Encode: Towards a Nomadic approach to Urban Complexity

Abstract – Principles from Complex Adaptive Systems theory have made their way into a wide array of urban discourses. That said, the methods used to operationalize complexity in urban contexts tend towards strategies that adopt top-down control through means such as modeling, unraveling, or steering complexity. This talk provides an orientation to a different approach for engaging complexity: one that enables the enactment of complex dynamics in situated contexts. This orientation employs what might – following Deleuze – be regarded as a ‘nomadic approach’: one that fosters bottom-up, provisional, and unfolding strategies that are responsive to ever-changing and uncertain contexts.

Bio – Sharon Wohl is an assistant professor in Architecture and Urban Design at Iowa State University. She received her PhD in Urbanism and Spatial Planning from Delft Technical University. She is currently on sabbatical in the Netherlands working as a Research Fellow at the Institute for Advanced Studies – a complexity research initiative within the University of Amsterdam. Her research considers how principles of complex adaptive systems can be operationalized within the built environment, through physical enactments of complex processes. Prior to joining Iowa State, Dr. Wohl practiced with the award-winning Canadian Architectural firm, 5468796 Architecture.


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