Cross-field in Design

Many people perceive architecture as a profession that solely encompasses imagining, planning, designing, and constructing buildings and structures. Perhaps even many high school graduates apply to universities to study architecture while holding such a notion. However, this traditional idea of architecture only specializing in one area is a widely held misconception. More often than not, architects, like many designers, expose themselves to various other fields to gain the required knowledge to use in the design process of most structures. In the scope of their profession, architects may need to rely on their knowledge in business, computer, environmental, medical, biological, cognitive, behavioral, and social studies. To take as an example, psychology-based insights can actually be used by architects to explain the value of a good design, and in this way, science could be a strong transformative tool to improve the quality of a built environment.

Now, many people may find that the field of architecture and science don’t have much in common, since to them, architecture is more about artistic expression and bringing aesthetics to a buildable structure. Whereas, science is more about rationality, evidence, and facts. However, one might be surprised to find out that science in itself encompasses some form of visual and conceptual beauty, similar to the architectural art. Moreover, both scientists and architects go through mental and psychological processes to reach a moment of creative conception that turns into a path of discovery and decision-making, where whatever seems right is kept, and whatever seems wrong is removed. The only difference is how both their paths are elaborated on. Furthermore, developments in each field affects the other, since science opens up worlds that constantly reveal new patterns and relationships that are usually followed by technological developments that architects may use for their works, as they gain new pigments, materials, processes, and even a new world view. Besides, with the technological invention of cameras, came the enforcement of selection, as well as sensitizing people’s eyes to the beauty of landscapes and architecture that have not been much appreciated before.

In short, if one is to look at all the aspects that architects have to pay attention to when doing their job, it is easy to recognize that the field of architecture, like any design profession, crosses many other fields. Architecture continuously grows to become more multi-disciplinary with specializations for every type of project, technological expertise, and project delivery methods. Architects have also now been expected to go through preliminary studies to learn about durability, sustainability, quality, money, and compliance with local laws. All this has especially become the case since the 1980s, when constructing buildings became more complicated in terms of structural systems, services, energy, and technologies, and crossing different disciplines would reduce the chances of failed architectural structures.