Jean Marot (I) - The Ceremonial Entry of Louis XIV and Marie-Thérèse into Paris in 1660 (Wikimedia Commons)

The Commons and its Tragedy:

Introducing a Notion

Lecture Tom Avermaete | 24.10.2016 | 19h | IKA R211a

‘The commons’ is one of these powerful tropes that pervades several fields of contemporary thinking and practice. In the first lecture we will probe into the thick historical and intellectual pedigree of this provocative conceptual frame, ranging from the enclosure movement in England to Garret Hardin’s famous parable on the ‘Tragedy of the Commons’ to Elinor Ostrom’s Nobel prize-wining work on common pool resources. We will explore how the concept of the commons has been semantically articulated and rearticulated, as it was developed in such a diverse fields as economy, politics and sociology.

This opening lecture will engage with the intellectual work of some of the founding mothers and fathers of the concept of the commons, looking into the work of economist Elinor Ostrom, ecologist Garret Hardin and philosopher Ivan Illich, but also into the approaches of contemporary thinkers such as Silke Konekfe and David Bollier who have defined the commons as a matter of ‘shared resources’ that allow us to conceive our everyday life beyond the dominant discourses of market economy and state intervention.
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The Commons and its Tragedy:

Introducing a Notion

Tom Avermaete | Lecture Series 2016|17

The intention of the lecture is to offer an introduction to the main perspectives and concepts that were recently coined and to construct a broader cultural and theoretical horizon from which to think the commons, as well as to start asking what these might imply for the field of architecture and urbanism.

Constructing the Commons: Another Approach to Architecture and the City
 | Winterterm 2016|17
Tom Avermaete | Endowed Professorship for Research in Visionary Cities

The endowed professorship (Endowed chair “City Culture and Open Space“) financed by the City of Vienna, was installed in 2015 within the study programs of the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna. It has the objective to artistically, radically and poetically bring forward the debate on the city and architecture. The object of study is the city. The teaching and research beholden with the endowed professorship focuses on the formulation of radical and visionary concepts regarding urban space. A further goal is to intensify the exchange of ideas and knowledge transfer between the city of Vienna and the Institute for Art and Architecture.

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Constructing the Commons:

Another Approach to Architecture and the City

Tom Avermaete | Endowed Professorship for Research in Visionary Cities | Lecture Series Winterterm 2016|17

This series is composed of five complementary lectures that together aim to outline an architectural understanding of the character, role and operations of the commons:

1. The Commons and its Tragedy: Introducing a Notion
2. Lex Communis: The Commonality of the Discipline and the Discipline of the Common Place
3. Praxis Communis: The Rituals, Pleasures and Politics of Cooperation
4. Res Communis: Common-Pool Resources in Architecture and Urban Design
5. The Architecture of the Commons: A New Path of Contemporary Logos and Praxis