Brains not bricks

March 3, 2006

The feature on architecture on campuses ("Let's play nicely together, shall we?", February 24), revealed the flaw in the popular idea that the building of so-called "creativity-enhancing" environments will lead inevitably to greater creative processes and outcomes.

Creativity is slippery and complex and it doesn't happen by willing it or designing it into existence. It's no use creating creative architecture if nothing is done to change the people and the organisational systems that operate in and around it.

Creative spaces are important. But those spaces are as much mental, spiritual and attitudinal as they are architectural. By focusing on the last, one can end up comfortably and ever so elegantly numb.

Paul Kleiman Palatine, Lancaster University

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