WIRED Science

Season 2007 Episode 10.10.07

Interview: Cameron Sinclair

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Interview: Cameron Sinclair
AIRED:
Cameron Sinclair solves the problems of the world with architecture. Co-founder of the charitable organization Architecture for Humanity, Sinclair and his co-founder Kate Stohr literally help re-build broken communities by promoting innovative and sustainable architecture and design. With the signature line "Design like you give a damn," Architecture for Humanity creates opportunities for architects around the world to make a difference through design initiatives, forums, workshops and competitions. The organization is, for example, helping to reconstruct the parts of India and Sri Lanka that were devastated by the 2004 tsunami, and is re-building parts of the U.S. gulf coast affected by Hurricane Katrina. They have also built a mobile health clinic to combat HIV/AIDS in Sub-Saharan Africa. In addition, Architecture for Humanity advises and consults governments around the world in their ongoing design projects. They are, for instance, helping Afghanistan build refugee housing and working with Turkey to construct earthquake resistant buildings. Sinclair and Stohr recently published a new book, Design Like You Give a Damn: Architectural Responses to Humanitarian Crises, which has received critical acclaim as the first ever compendium of sustainable architecture efforts around the world. This year, the organization opened an online open source architecture community called the Open Architecture Network to improve living conditions through design. In September, the Network launched an international competition--open to everyone, including non-architects--called the Open Architecture Challenge, which seeks to bring affordable Internet access to half of the world by 2015 (right now, only a fifth of the world can surf the web). Three winning design teams, to be announced next year, will work with Architecture for Humanity to implement their plans in South America, Africa and Asia, respectively.moreless
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