28 Jun Neuro-architecture, creativity, upcoming events
I’m still more-or-less housebound with only walks through the local park to provide environmental variety, but I’m still managing to get out and about online, participating in some interesting events whenever I can. For example, recently I had a chance to do a seminar with Kay Sargent for Forbo. The theme was neurodiversity and environmental design and my job was to provide some basic background on neuroscience. Kay’s was to illuminate the neurodiversity topic. I have to confess that this is something that I have not thought about often enough in spite of there being a good deal of neurodiversity among my family and friends. If you want to watch the talks, you can find them here.
More recently, I had a chance to participate in a webinar on neuroarchitecture and inclusivity with a pretty stunning panel of colleagues. It was for the massive (and free) Digital Futures conference, which is still going on for a little while as I write this (ending early July 2021), but which I’m pretty sure its ok to link to this YouTube which contains the whole session, including a short talk by me. I’m getting increasingly interested in the role of AI in design (for better and for worse) and I think you’ll see some of that reflected both in my writing and in my research.
Closer to home, I’m working on a major review paper for a landscape architecture journal in which I’m hoping to put some new ideas into the marketplace. It might be a year before its available to the world though. I’m also working on a book proposal, which I really need to be completed at least in draft form within a couple of weeks. Lately, I’ve found that my thoughts and ideas are pulling me out of my comfort zone and into some unfamiliar realms. Unless I’ve just been cooped up for too long, I feel as though many of my longstanding interests in things like complexity and vitality in urban design are meeting some new friends in some pretty far flung areas. I had a conversation recently with a friend and colleague about creativity and the drawing of new connections, citing the ideas of people like Howard Gardner and Arthur Koestler. So maybe that’s what’s happening. Or maybe I’m just turning into one of those late-stage academics who suddenly sees how everything is connected to everything else and, not coincidentally either, at the same time finds that nobody can understand what they’re talking about anymore. I hope not. Time will tell.
In the meantime, there are rumblings of a truly exciting (and honestly slightly scary) collection of minds I’ll be able to sit among at an upcoming event. More news here when its firmed up.