1. Spon­ta­neous asso­ci­a­tion of per­sons united for polit­i­cal or trade union.
2. In a party or a trade union, a group of per­sons with liaisons out­side of the party, who deal with a spe­cific topic or issue.


1. Fun­da­men­tal pro­gram at the basis of a com­mon action or nego­ti­a­tion car­ried out by a group.

These two words have become the new cliché terms used by archi­tects.
Col­lec­tives or plat­forms are pop­ping up on a daily basis to par­tic­i­pate in com­pe­ti­tions, small projects or pub­licly com­mis­sioned research stud­ies.
Dur­ing the ‘60s and ‘70s, this def­i­n­i­tion was rel­e­vant among stu­dents and work­ers aim­ing at polit­i­cal dis­cus­sion; today, these terms have been revived by archi­tects in order to define their more or less for­mal asso­ci­a­tion and work relationship.

This trend seems to triv­i­al­ize the mean­ing of the word “col­lec­tive.” In fact, it illus­trates that archi­tec­tural firms might be an out­dated set­ting for architecture.

Another phe­nom­e­non of archi­tec­tural prac­tice, which is also expe­ri­enced by other pro­fes­sion­als, is the phys­i­cal aggre­ga­tion of their offices within the same com­pound (or build­ing, block, or neigh­bor­hood).
It favours knowledge-sharing, and stim­u­lates col­lab­o­ra­tions and sol­i­dar­ity; but it also does not elim­i­nate the risk of self– seg­re­ga­tion. Because real inter­dis­ci­pli­nar­ity is lack­ing, the chance to inter­weave work rela­tion­ships with pro­fes­sion­als of other fields could be missed.


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Latest Comments


on 12+ h. a day, 6/7 days a week

2017-08-06 12:09:32

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multitude- multitude

on Survey

2015-04-01 13:27:31

[…] the spon­ta­neous responses to the last ques­tion of the sur­vey car­ried out in […]

Conrad Newel

on 12+ h. a day, 6/7 days a week

2015-03-23 18:10:56

@Colt Sievers I will be the first to agree with you on all counts. I would love to read that article. If you ever want to publish it on my blogg please do not hesitate to contact me.

Colt Sievers

on 12+ h. a day, 6/7 days a week

2015-03-23 16:58:10

@Conrad having worked in one of those offices that you mention, I have found your post as much provocative as naive and simplistic. I should make an entire post to explain why... will leave that for later. Thanks, anyway, to keep the discussion alive

Conrad Newel

on 12+ h. a day, 6/7 days a week

2015-03-23 16:45:07

Besides my terrible diction or lack thereof this raises another issue. Should we really feel outrage or sympathy for these interns? After all the ones who can afford to take these kind of jobs are the sons and daughters of the wealthy. What this letter is, is infact symbolic capital and social significance for sale. The rich kid can buy this piece of significance for among other reasons to go to a party and say to his less affluent counterpart, "hey I work for SANAA, or DS+R or whoever. Where do you work again?" Its a status symbol, just like a porsche, or a private jet. Affordable to a selected few that can afford it.