Sunday, 26 September 2010


Following is the abstract from my MSc Dissertation, entitled, DESIGN PREOCCUPATIONS OF PAM AWARD WINNERS IN POST-MILLENNIAL MALAYSIA.

Site Response, Building Program and Appropriate Technology emerged as the top design preoccupations of Malaysian architects in the first decade of the new millennium. This prime research-observation was culled from selected winners of building awards instituted by the Malaysian Board of Architects. The winners were made to answer a list of questions which was structured from preliminary investigations that comprised literature reviews and a pilot survey of the predominant ideas of a couple of distinguished architects who were academician-practitioners (one an award winner himself). The Questionnaire, Interview and Site Observation were primary instruments, and while collected data revealed design approaches and theoretical premises that were varied and dexterous, the commonality, ranking and precedents of design preoccupations were clearly discernible. Samples included an eco-friendly interpretive center in the equatorial forest, a complex street mall in a provincial town, and a showroom for luxury condominiums in the city suburbs. The research suggests that there is a strong case for a theory that Site Response, Building Program and Appropriate Technology are prerequisites that anchor an architect’s exploration of personal design preoccupations in the pursuit of excellence; and concludes with a set of recommendations for sharpening the process of design, assessment and review. Design architects and the profession in Malaysia are the main targeted beneficiaries. While the research, completed in 2010, was subject-centric—investigating the point of view of the sample architects—the researcher capitalized on his own experience of 20 years in private practice, and 4 years in simultaneous teaching.

- July 2010

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