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Design Like You Give A Damn: Architectural Responses To Humanitarian Crises Paperback – Jan 15 2006

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Metropolis Books; 1st edition (Jan. 15 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1933045256
  • ISBN-13: 978-1933045252
  • Product Dimensions: 3.2 x 21.6 x 20.3 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 839 g
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #170,626 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Lois Kivipelto on Dec 3 2007
Format: Paperback
This is an interesting book with one foot in Architecture and the other in Political Science and Cultural Anthropology. The book is full of pictures and stories of various projects in designing temporary shelters, transitional housing, and community infrastructure. There are some interesting interviews and the collection of designing experiences is from around the world. Many of the designs are contributions to project design contest. Many of the best designs are not used because of the problems of bureaucracy. The delivery of materials can cost as much as the materials themselves. The more successful designs utilize local materials and expertise.

I found the reading intensely interesting is areas that interested me. I thought of skipping areas that were not particularly of interest to me, but either I looked ahead at the pictures and was curious or before I finished an article, I was intrigued by some point expressed, and so read the whole book. All organizations are listed and many web sites.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 39 reviews
87 of 88 people found the following review helpful
Soon to be dog-eared Sept. 13 2006
By desertknitter - Published on
Format: Paperback
I've read this book from cover to cover - only the second architecture book I've finished all the way through. The first 'Good deeds, good design' (ed. Bryan Bell) is very similar in its exploration of sustainable innovative design. I've been waiting awhile for something as inspirational as that book, and 'Design Like You Give A Damn' doesn't disappoint.

While covering some of the same projects as 'Good Deeds, Good Design' it looks at quite a few more as well. The emphasis is on cultural, rather than environmental, sustainability (but the latter isn't ignored).

The graphics make it as accessible as a coffee table book (without the shallowness) and the information is clear and easy to read. Best of all, it avoids the self indulgent, self-obsessed rhetoric that seems to be so common in architectural books.

After finishing each section of this book I'm left with so many questions that the book couldn't possibly answer. How do I get involved or start one of these projects? What tools were used in the participation stage? (In this respect 'Good Deeds' is a bit more helpful?) How exactly does the construction work for the adobe huts that are lit on fire from the inside?

'Design Like You Give A Damn' promotes a philosophy of initiative, resourcefulness and not waiting for things to be handed to you. As such, the greatest compliment I can pay this book (and its authors) is that I finished it with lots of questions and enthusiasm.
43 of 45 people found the following review helpful
This Book Sets a New Standard Aug. 30 2006
By Timothy Lundquist - Published on
Format: Paperback
I am a community planner working in sustainable design. I have a library of books that pitch the green, the innovative , mod construction, etc.

Most of them are, at the end of the day, fluff... many promoting a small group of architects that get together to publish a sort of self serving tome.

THIS BOOK IS THE EXCEPTION! It is sure to become the standard as a resource for inspired design world wide, and the way it is constructed is brilliant, with the design and the technical well illustrated, along with an engaging background story of how the project came about, what were the challenges, etc.

I am purchasing copies of this book for associates so they can get the benefit of this remarkable overview of creative, sustainable, and innovative work being done world-wide by designers, tinkers , inventors, and creative folks that really do Give a Damn

I hope they issue a new edition every couple of years.

Seriously, its like the original Whole Earth in the important and liberating information contained... an important new resource

Buy this Book.
24 of 26 people found the following review helpful
An encyclopedia of inspiration Sept. 3 2006
By A W - Published on
Format: Paperback
To echo what some of the other reviewers have written, this book is really marvelous inspiration. It describes a series of projects, most built, that are mostly low tech, low cost, people-centered. It is mainly architecture (buildings), but highlights a few projects that fall more into the 'appropriate tech' catagory: pumps, water carriers, solar stills, bush toilets...

Like most architecture books, this isn't a technical guide, but it is a well written, inspirational look at a few dozen examples of architecture and design applied to their highest good.
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
An inspriational read!! Aug. 29 2006
By GB - Published on
Format: Paperback
This book is truly fantastic. I am an architecture student in the process of writing a thesis on sustainable humanitarian design. There is no other title on the market that compares - so many examples from right across the globe. It is so current, so real and I couldn't help but be inspired. I hope that one day I am able to be a part of the work of these amazing design professionals.
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
For once, not a coffee table book about architecture... Nov. 25 2007
By Architectural Historian - Published on
Format: Paperback
This book is an important counterbalance to the plethora of glossy coffee table books about architecture that glorify starchitects and their creations, which usually only benefit their wealthy clients. If only the architectural journals would plaster these projects on their front pages instead of oh-so-chic homes and corporate headquarters. The world is facing a housing crisis, but most architects are not trained to respond to this crisis in massive, innovative ways that go beyond the feel-good student trips to build a couple of houses for people in need. This book should be required reading in all architecture schools, architecture practices, and architectural publishing offices. The profession - as with so many other professions - has lost its way. This book can be one small step toward recovering the reality that architecture is a collaborative endeavor that entails public responsibilities.