Order, chaos, and the city, space and urban form into the twenty-first century

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Paskvalin, Jadranka
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This thesis endeavours to: (1) discuss the issues of the "lived world" defined in social, environmental, political and economic terms, and how they affect cities; (2) understand how current urban theories approach these issues; and (3) offer reformulations of what urban theory can do, and to promote a new way of thinking and looking at cities. The thesis suggests that it is not accurate to simplify the problems of cities, and to advocate "better" planning and design. Too many current design strategies, and almost all the other procedures of environmental design and/or sciences that have attempted to solve the problems of our cities today, have been too reductionist. They have a prescriptive attitude, and are of limited value in dealing with the issues of the lived world. In the end of the twentieth century, they are not able to understand or accommodate new changes that accompany our world and cities. The role of architect and urbanist is to use our environmental knowledge and our understanding of cities toreveal the absurdity of our current condition and to accelerate change. Therefore, my thesis is, that for proper understanding of what the city is today, we need to understand its functional order, which is possible only through holistic observation that includes a variety of disciplines. The thesis indicates that the present city is in accord with the dominant attitudes in present day society, and is a part of a complex self-governing order which is the order of life.