Activist Architecture is an edited volume bringing together some of the most creative minds working in the world of community design and socially engaged practice. It asserts that community design centers and other socially engaged practices expand the influence built environmental professions have on culture and society. These practices work under the premise that designers should expand their clientele, where they work, and the types of projects they engage. This does not mean that design centers exclude people who typically build or hire an architect, urban designer, landscape architect, or planner. Design centers include more people, more programs, and more geographies in the process. They are advocates for people who are typically left out of design and place-making decisions. Design centers widen the undertaking beyond some people to include all (or more) people.
While looking back over the past 50+ years, Activist Architecture positions the philosophy and practice of community design centers for today and tomorrow. The editors of Activist Architecture put together both a “why-to” and “how-to” guide for establishing and operating a community design center.