Bureaucracy and Discourse in Everyday Architecture, 1930-1970: An Introduction

01 January 2015 → 31 December 2015
Regional and community funding: Special Research Fund, Research Foundation - Flanders (FWO)
Research disciplines
  • Humanities
    • Architectural design
    • Architecture
    • Art studies and sciences
    • Interior architecture
  • Engineering and technology
    • Architectural engineering
    • Architecture
    • Interior architecture
Project description

My proposal is threefold: I intend to prepare the long-term research project
‘Bureaucracy and Discourse in Everyday Architecture, 1930-1970’, taking
advantage of the expertise of the Architectural History and Theory research group
in Ghent; to collaborate with it to produce specific outputs that explore our shared
interest in the less-celebrated works and agents of architecture; and to valorise my
recently concluded PhD research through publication.
Extending my research experience in the Portuguese context to a comparative
analysis of everyday architecture in Lisbon, Brussels, Paris and London, the longterm
project I propose to develop is an investigation into the little-studied
architectural culture contained in the bureaucratic framework of design and building
as quotidian practices. In three key-moments of the last century, I will seek the
discourse underpinning such practices by recouping the unpublished exchanges
between architects and non-architects, planners and officials, logged in
administrative archives. I suggest there is a hidden architectural culture in
bureaucracy, with specific and common transnational traits (backgrounds, policies,
resources), which is central to the discipline but seldom given the attention of
history and theory. The project can further our understanding of the conditions in
which Europe’s built environment evolved in the mid-twentieth century and
illuminate the cultural setting of architecture’s vast middle ground, beyond its