Living Systems

Leonard Schrage, Partner
Martin Bittmann, Partner
Julia Dorn, Researcher




Published on April 21, 2021

What role does infrastructure play in shaping future-proof and liveable cities?

"Infrastructure is the basic framework of a system and therefore also the underlying foundation of the world as we know it. Thus, it plays a key role in changing what goes wrong. If we manage to rethink it from the ground up, infrastructure becomes a powerful blueprint for positive and long-overdue change at a large scale."


How do infrastructures need to change and reconfigure in light of global and local challenges?

"We imagine future infrastructures to bridge the missing connection across natural ecosystems – where we humans need to understand we are one of. As tools have always played a great role within human advancement, technology will do the same. However, in order to mitigate disaster, we need to make sure it is used to create a positive impact. To do so, it is crucial to foster digital literacy as well as planetary competence for everyone to understand what influences our world and take an active share in the process – no matter how small or large it might be."


Which infrastructure is being neglected, has to be maintained, created or cancelled?

"Sooner or later, our planet will take back control and design a new future for itself – as it has always done. We as humans just need to decide whether we want to be part of it, or not. Following generations driven by fossil fuels and exponential growth, it is now time to stop sealing our world’s surface with concrete or to extract resources without giving back. Enough is Enough."


Which new actors will emerge and shape future infrastructures?

"For a future-proof coexistence, we need to achieve homeostasis. Natural ecosystems of various scales – spanning from forests over oceans to microbes – need to not only be respected but seen as key actors on eye-level in order for sustainable habitats and infrastructures to grow. If we want to succeed in what will be our major challenge of the upcoming decades, we need to act fast."


About the author: 

Living Systems is an interdisciplinary research and design practice, examining the intersection of architecture, urban design, real estate and technology.
The practice’s aim is to fundamentally reconstruct the architectural practice through applied research, integrative design and alternative financing models, developing approaches for human habitation that respect the planet's boundaries, serve the common good, sustain life at scale, and nourish the future.
The team proposes Enoughness as a practice in their manifesto Enough Architecture.



[EN]   Berlin Brandenburg 2040 was initiated by the Habitat Unit in cooperation with Projekte International and provides an open stage and platform for multiple contributions of departments and students of the Technical University Berlin and beyond. The project is funded by the Robert Bosch Foundation.

[DE]   Berlin Brandenburg 2040 wurde initiiert von der Habitat Unit in Kooperation mit Projekte International und bietet eine offene Plattform für Beiträge von Fachgebieten und Studierenden der Technischen Universität Berlin und darüberhinaus. Das Projekt wird von der Robert Bosch Stiftung gefördert.

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