The Architecture of Belonging: What building back better should actually look like


In this piece for our Stratford Design Challenge series, Nick Moss considers how the pandemic has affected the relationship between people and the places we live and work

The majority of human beings want to belong to a social and cultural community. They long for a feeling of attachment, of being rooted. To achieve that feeling, the psyche connects to certain places, increasing a sense of self-esteem, happiness and belonging. Place at its best addresses basic human needs by creating inclusion, identification and the opportunity for affiliation. Place deals with the interaction between the question of who we are and where we are.

How has the pandemic affected the relationship between people and the places where they live?

The pandemic represents the greatest social experiment since the end of the Second World War. Once lockdown began, place took on a new meaning for the majority of the population. Losing the opportunity to live and roam freely created a different perspective.

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