Why the talk is inspiring?
For a last several years Reinier de Graaf speaks about shift of power from the public to the private sector and also about a role of finances and politics towards architects profession. In his recent lectures OMA partner argues that “a move can be witnessed from architecture inspired by ideology to architecture driven by economic values”. State of post financial crisis influenced architecture heavily and recent changes in a political climate of western world suggests an apparent failure of neo-liberalism. In this context issue of money in architecture becomes important more than ever and Reinier de Graaf is one of those who are capable to tackle the essence of a topic.
Image courtesy of OMA
Reinier de Graaf
How the speaker is exceptional?
Reinier de Graaf joined OMA in 1996. He is responsible for building and masterplanning projects in Europe, Russia, and the Middle East, including Holland Green in London (completed 2016), the new Timmerhuis in Rotterdam (completed 2015), G-Star Headquarters in Amsterdam (completed 2014), De Rotterdam (completed 2013), and the Norra Tornen residential towers in Stockholm.
In 2002, he became director of AMO, the think tank of OMA, and produced The Image of Europe, an exhibition illustrating the history of the European Union. He has overseen AMO’s increasing involvement in sustainability and energy planning, including Zeekracht: a strategic masterplan for the North Sea; the publication in 2010 of Roadmap 2050: A Practical Guide to a Prosperous, Low-Carbon Europe with the European Climate Foundation; and The Energy Report, a global plan for 100 percent renewable energy by 2050, with the WWF.
De Graaf has recently worked extensively in Moscow, overseeing OMA’s proposal to design
the masterplan for the Skolkovo Centre for Innovation, the ‘Russian Silicon Valley,’ and leading a consortium which proposed a development concept for the Moscow Agglomeration: an urban plan for Greater Moscow. He recently curated two exhibitions, On Hold at the British School in Rome in 2011 and Public Works: Architecture by Civil Servants (Venice Biennale, 2012; Berlin, 2013).
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Capital in the Twenty-First Century
Why the book is worth reading?
The book’s central thesis is that when the rate of return on capital (r) is greater than the rate of economic growth (g) over the long term, the result is concentration of wealth, and this unequal distribution of wealth causes social and economic instability. Piketty proposes a global system of progressive wealth taxes to help reduce inequality and avoid the vast majority of wealth coming under the control of a tiny minority.