Philosophy may contribute to architecture by analysing claims made in architecture, by identifying their empirical content and by giving methods to test their truth. My case is a claim made as part of the development of computer supported tools for architectural design. The claim concerned a Shape Grammar Systems that can generate designs for refurbishing Rabo-de-Bacalhau apartments, a type of apartment of which there are about 30.000 instances in the city of Lisbon. The claim made is that the quality of the generated designs is equal to that of designs made by human architects. In architecture this claim, rather than being assessed, resulted in angry discussions about the threat it may pose to the profession. Philosophy can help determining whether the claim is actually true by analysing what it means and identifying ways to test it, as I will sketch in my contribution.
Harvard Citation Guide: Vermaas, P. (2014) Taking Architectural Claims More Seriously: Philosophy and Research Methodology, International Society for the Philosophy of Architecture, [blog] 19 May 2014, Available at: http://isparchitecture.com. [Accessed: 01 June 2014].