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Balancing quantitative analysis and social concern

Lars Marcus


Rereading Julienne Hanson’s ‘Urban transformations: A history of design ideas’, published in Urban Design International in 2000, one is immediately reminded of Hanson’s versatile research work that apart from extensive studies on urban issues, also includes major contributions to the research on buildings, architectural history and design methodology, which all are distinctly present in ‘Urban transformations’. As a matter of fact, this article can to equal degrees be characterised as a piece of original architectural history, a contribution to analytical methodology, a broad and thorough empirical study of the social implications of housing estates in the UK, or as a critical reflection in design methodology. This is a pattern recognisable in many articles by Hanson, why one is also reminded of the unfortunate fact that there are several such broad and well-investigated themes of hers that so far have not been realised in full-length books.


Urban morphology, urban design, quantitative analysis, social concern, cognitive geometry

Full Text: JOSS_2012_P5-6