How I see design as distributed agency

To me, design as distributed agency is a collective method of working, where influence on the design is actively encouraged from those who might not usually be included in the design process.  Although the architect or designer may provide an overall drawing together of ideas, these ideas come firmly from those within the existing community where the proposal will stand.  The initial design as created is unlikely to be ‘finished’ in the conventional sense.  Over time, it may be adapted by those who use it as a response to what they feel is necessary, and the first iteration of the design is not as preciously protected as in more traditional methods of working.

In my opinion, an example of design as distributed agency can be seen at Christiania, Copenhagen.  Inhabitants of this area create their own homes from whatever materials are available, and the arrangement of each home responds directly to the needs of the person or people living there.


(Photos) Copenhagen, Denmark – THE NOMADIC DREAMER. (2015). Retrieved 9 January 2017, from


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