the madness of reducing urban planning efforts and the meaning of #organisationdesign

The design of organisation compared to the design of cities, landscapes and dwellings is a fairly temporary affair. Although there is the force of the bulldozer, the effects of human interference in our built environment are mostly not so easy to reverse. Organisations are, compared to our artefacts of steel and concrete, very flexible and passing affairs. The average life expectancy of an organisation is much shorter than a city extension. We are talking years versus centuries. That is one of reasons why the profession of architect and urban planning came to life. It is a sensible thing to think about measures that have a longstanding impact and plan them carefully. The space occupied is not easy to reclaim or to change.

The amounts of time and money on strategy and planning of organisations are enormous. The money spend on strategy and change management through external consultants exceeds the amount  spend on designers, architects and urban planners many times. This a kind of paradox when you look at the aspect of life expectancy and the measure of flexibility.

Seen from this perspective, it seems complete madness to reduce any effort for spatial planing as currently put into practice by the Dutch government.

This madness puts any writing on what elements in the design of an organisation can add to its beauty, in perspective.

Apparently society (at least the Dutch, forgetting their long tradition of good design) let forego chances of good design and careful planning and live willfully  with the result.  At the same time this hopefully short-lived absence of sound thinking, makes the absolute necessity to keep thinking and designing whenever we have the opportunity, even bigger. And opportunities can be created!

Design itself  as an element of beauty. And as for organisations, we are in a lucky position, because mistakes can relative easily be repaired.




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