Speculative Models for the Present

X:

Y:

P[04]Critical
Firm

Location

London [UK]

Year

2016 - 2017

Team

Tomás Clavijo

Output

Article
System map

Looking at

Corporate Social Responsibility
Corporate Political Action
Corporate Identity

Through the lense of

Cultural Studies
Cultural Branding
Network Society

In the context of

Brexit
2016 Trump’s presidential campaign
Black Live Matters protests

For my mother,
and my father,
for giving me the courage
to enjoy paradox.

Kalpana Seshadri-Crooks

01.

Cover Image
Unsatisfied client fails to take out his nikes before burning them after the company’s support campaign to Colin Kaepernick, NFL League player who repeatedly knelt during the national anthem as a protest against racial injustice.

Most contemporary politico-economic discussion orbits the question of the role of the state and corporations, and where to establish the line between them. However, assuming market-driven organisations are de facto occupying a number of strategic domains traditionally managed by the state, there is a need for strategies to “democratise” their behaviour. Understanding the corporation within the political system and as a political system, and finding mechanisms to democratise it by exploiting its own logics of profit, was the focus of this investigative piece.

The piece was developed over the course of the 2016 American presidential campaigns and the early months of Trump’s mandate in 2017. Growing from anecdotic observations to systemic conclusions, this essay explores what corporations say and do concerning politics and how they affect each other. The first half of it deals with Corporate Political Identity (CPI) and concludes by allocating an opportunity. The second half deals with Corporate Political Action (CPA) and concludes by defining a strategy to fulfil it.

After four years of increasing polarisation, the piece remains utterly relevant today and represents a line of investigation that we aim to continue developing in the future.

C[00]Outline

[01]Ongoing, deep, systemic trust crises in Western societies; the rise of “populist” politics can be understood as a failure of corporate social responsibility – the hegemonic identity of the corporate establishment during the last two decades – to engage extensive sectors of a highly polarised population.

[02]To reinstate trust among those sectors, the corporate world needs to perform a parallelism that offers symbolic resolutions to the ongoing societal tensions. For this to happen, a more diverse array of corporate identities should be at play.

[02]In this context and in opposition to popular belief, the purposeful generation and management of conflict and the use of transparent political action can be combined as a strategy to generate trust and legitimacy among citizens, and a position of leadership for businesses who unapologetically embrace their political nature.

02.

Extract from Nike’s 2017  campaign “Equality” by WIEDEN & KENNEDY-PORTLAND.

Sex does not sell anymore, activism does.

ELLE UK Director -The Guardian- (February, 2017)

C[01]Context

A media environment dominated by post-truth, post-factual politics, the social media bubbles, and the rise of populism.

In a media environment dominated by editorial lines concerning post-truth and post-factual politics (The New York Times, 2016), the exclusionary effects of the social media bubble (Llinares, 2016), and the rise of populism as a threat to market stability (Dalio, Bridgewater Associates, 2017), the election of Donald J. Trump as the 45th president of the United States precipitated a short trend towards the public politicisation of business organisations against his figure and particularly against his immigration ban during the early months of 2017. An extensive list of companies including Patagonia, Starbucks, Airbnb, Uber, and Lyft were involved in political commentary and activist campaigns through social media, and others such as Nike, Heineken, and Budweiser launched large-scale politically charged commercial campaigns on TV. Reporting on some of these examples, The Guardian published an opinion article titled “Sex doesn’t sell anymore, activism does” (Holder, 2017). One day before, “the ‘rise of branded activism” was praised with messianic voice in a trends foresight article at fastcodesign.com, stating that as “a reflection of the changing political tides, many brands would evolve from mission-driven to activist” and “finally stop trying to trick us” (Co.design, 2017).

C[02]Branded Activism as Cultural Strategy

The democratisation of cultural production through social networks has relegated brands to a secondary role in favour of crowd culture.

“Branded activism” follows within the domain of “cultural strategy” which has long been promoted by branding guru Douglas B.Holt. In his article “Branding in the Age of Social Media” (Harvard Business Review, 2016), he encourages brands to adopt the role of amplifiers of cultural movements in order to remain relevant. Holt’s cultural strategy previously explained “How Brands Became Icons” (Holt, 2004) in the second half of the 20th century. His theory instructs brands on how to perform “identity myths” in order to become “cultural icons” that offer symbolic resolution to the tensions, contradictions, and paradoxes emerging between people’s inherited ideologies and their direct experience of the world. Those myths draw from existing stories in society and take place in idealized “populist” worlds where brands have to earn credibility through their actions and language. As Holt points out, the value of a particular myth resides not within the myth itself, but in its alignment with society’s incipient identity desires (Holt: 9).

Using this theoretical framework we developed a comparative exercise to showcase how the same ideology can be reinterpreted through different identity myths, in different populist worlds, and with different practices and language in order to seduce different target audiences.


C[03]The Globalization Paradoxes

Understanding the anxieties that shape citizens’ identities today is key to developing successful cultural strategies.

In “The Globalization Paradox” (2011), Dany Rodrik exposes the conflicts emerging between national democracy and global market integration as one of the major global identity shapers. This argument was already developed by Nobel laureate economist Joseph E. Stiglitz in his book Globalization and Its Discontents (2003). The global power structures and institutions described in these texts define global finance and politics but remain distant for the average citizen whose political identity is still built around the nation state. The effective power of these institutions, maybe obvious for decades in countries of the periphery, was not explicitly perceived in Western societies by a generation that was raised in a period of relative growth and stability or under the protection of the welfare state. The 2008 subprime crisis, financial sector bailout, and posterior austerity measures and welfare cuts promoted by international financial institutions made those conflicts explicit. In 2013, 58% of EU citizens believed their country’s government was to a large extent or entirely controlled by a few big interest parties (Transparency International Global Barometer, 2013). As the reader can guess, the opportunistic campaign of “branded activism” does not represent the first try of the corporate world to tackle this public concern through corporate identity.

C[04]The Making of Corporate Identity

The development of corporate identity takes place in cyclical processes as a consequence of systemic identity conflicts.

Corporate identity is “the identity attributed to an organization by its more powerful managerial group”; organizational identity represents “shared interpretive schemes” that other groups such as members, stakeholders, users, or the general public collectively construct to provide meaning to their experience (Rodrigues and Child, 2007; 887). Changes in corporate identity can be stimulated by external pressures as interpreted by corporate managers (Chreim, 2005). Divergences between the corporate identity and the desirable organizational identity as perceived by external parties such as citizens or governments lead to “identity dissonances” (Chreim, 2002). When this phenomenon arises, managerial responses search to restore consistency. The ability of top managers to construct and sustain a corporate identity discourse depends on two main factors: mobilisation and legitimacy. Mobilisation is a concept applied to “the development of collective consciousness and the energizing of action in social and political movements” (Newton, 1999). Firm mobilisation capabilities help sustain managerial identity. The counter-mobilisation capabilities of other interest groups that are opposed to a particular identity compromise it (Rodrigues and Child, 2008: 892). Legitimacy is a sociological term that denotes “a condition of positive valuation and acceptance enjoyed by persons in positions of power, and by the organizations through which that power is exercised” (Rodriguez and Child, 2008: 893). Habermas introduced the concept of ‘legitimacy crises’ to define “situations in which individuals or organizations in power are unable to meet social expectations” (1975). Corporate identity is used as a claim for legitimacy for the organization. The identity gains legitimacy when it is embedded in a discourse that relates sympathetically to the wider context. Thus “conscious and explicit attempts on behalf of the organization to justify what it is and what it stands for are aimed at securing legitimacy for the ideas behind a corporate identity and the actions associated with it” (Rodriguez and Child, 2008: 893).

03.

In the screenshot Adidas official Instagram account reshares a Nike Campaign in support of Black Live Matters protests following the killing of George Floyd.

C[05]CSR as Political Identity

Through a process of strategic interactions in the aim of legitimacy, corporate social responsibility (CSR) has grown as the dominant discourse of corporate political identity in the 21st century. 

Concepts such as “branded activism” or “mission-driven business” can be classified as subcultures of CSR or progressive steps in the path of responsibilisation as much as subcategories of cultural branding. Although the process of generation of corporate identity follows this strong and understandable logic, organisations change their identities to match the dominant ideologies in society in order to legitimise their operations; within the academic community, there are two antagonistic narratives surrounding CSR. The former implies a discourse of celebration that sees CSR as the result of bottom-up corrective forces in the market; the latter implies a discourse of rejection that sees CSR as a top-down dialectical tool for the advancement of neoliberal governmentalities.

04.

CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) – “A concept whereby companies integrate social and environmental concerns in their business operations and in their interaction with their stakeholders on a voluntary basis” (European Commission, 2001)

05.

Mixed race young girl runs in an idyllic green landscape in a CSR campaign by Microsoft. ranked #1 on Corporate Responsibility Magazine’s 100 Best Corporate Citizens 2018. A bright sky suggests a promising future.

C[06]CSR: A Bottom-Up Approach

As corporations became increasingly international and the public saw itself as inhabiting a world dominated by markets, activist and social movements that had traditionally been concerned with the public politics of governments started targeting the private politics of corporations. The same reasons led some groups to mobilise around consumption as a form of political expression, generating movements such as “conscious consumerism” or concepts such as “moral markets.” In addition to this, tactical innovations exported from “civil society” organisations added collaboration to the traditional strategies of contentious confrontation developed by social movements (de Bakker et al., 2013: 574). As a result, corporations’ strategic management considerations of the stakeholder moved from purely economic to taking into consideration a wider spectrum of societal groups, as developed in the Stakeholder Theory of Edward Freeman (CEBC, 2004: 9).

C[07]CSR: A Top-Down Approach

The alternative discourse on CSR presents it as a structural top-down strategy, coupling a process of economisation and a process of moralisation of markets in general, and business organisations in particular, to sustain and justify neoliberal governmentalities and visions of the society (Shamir, 2008; 1-2). This logic points out that both political institutions and corporations, by promoting the logics of “responsibilisation” and “economic sustainability,” are transfiguring domains previously perceived as public, as if embedded in a competitive environment reigned by market logics (Shamir, 2008;1). Among those sectors, Shamir counts health, education, security, and welfare. Adding to that, CSR contributes to the privatisation, deregulation, and structural corporatisation of the political by “transforming laws and norms into guidelines, relying on self-reflexive regulation, and treating normative prescriptions as commodities to be produced, distributed, and consumed” (Lobel, 2004).

C[08]The Gaps of CSR

This article does not aim to determine whether CSR is the result of corrective forces on the free market or the justification for it to advance. It does not aim to determine the structural result of CSR as a practice either. Both narratives are compatible and understandable through the lenses of Mobilisation, Legitimacy, and Strategic Interactions and the practices deployed by each responsible firm should be studied separately. What is relevant for this paper is to acknowledge that CSR, the intended CPI of most organisations, is failing in its claims for legitimacy among extensive sectors of the population. Reasons include:

01. The parallel increase of inequality.

02. The concerns about the blurring of private and public.

03. The issue-driven nature of responsibilisation.

04. The non-structural character of measures.

05. The non-disclosure of lobbying positions and activities.

06. The insistence on an apolitical treatment.

However, after analysis of the research on cultural branding presented in the previous chapters, the author can conclude that the major issue is one of identity.

06.

Kendall Jenner hands in a can of Pepsi to a police officer as a sign of understanding in a meaningless demonstration about ‘joining the conversation’ in a failed Pepsi commercial.

C[09]The Aesthetics of Responsibility

Responsibility is a failing signifier to engage those who feel angry. Identity is not enough for those who feel betrayed. In its aim to match an idealised hegemonic identity, the business world is failing to offer a symbolic parallelism to extensive sectors of a population that, after 10 years of decentralized news consumption and publically funded bailouts, is politicized, highly polarized, and skeptical. While the short wave of branded activism has opportunistically – and maybe unintentionally – broken the “business don’t talk politics” mantra aiming to seduce alternative markets, it has failed to legitimize that step. To succeed on that aim, alternative narratives should be at play. On acknowledgement of this situation it seems logical to wonder what are the drivers of legitimacy among those sectors of the population and who has been successful in mobilising them?

C[10]Markets of Discontent

The use of the word “populism” by mainstream media has become intentionally and intrinsically pejorative and naturalized as a synonym of demagogic. However, in political science, “populism” is simply a descriptive tag used to catalogue movements that match the narrative “people versus elite.” A broad ideological, geographical, and temporal spectrum of movements are catalogued as such. As seen in previous chapters, the cultural branding strategies used by corporations for decades present clear populist elements, too. The use of populist narratives does not necessarily carry a negative or positive connotation, neither is it attached to the deployment of a particular set of policies. It is just an archetypal narrative.

This article will not discuss the degree of veracity or demagogy of any populist narrative, the same way it did not discuss the degree of veracity of the narratives of responsibility. The key point is that populist narratives do not represent a menace to the corporate establishment because they are demagogic. They represent a menace because they have been successful in mobilising people, and they did so because they are aligned and explicitly verbalise an already existing feeling of the population: that the corporate world is at the very centre of political decision-making and that it is responsible for the politico-economic devenir of the last decades, and there is an incipient desire of rebellion against it.

C[07]Logics of Contestation

If logics of collaboration are the drivers of legitimacy for CSR among extensive sectors of the population, conflict and logics of contestation – particularly against the corporate world – are the drivers of legitimacy among others.

A corporate identity aiming to seduce those markets and present an alternative to CSR should utilise those drivers. In order to legitimise their position as activists, activist corporations would need to perform an “identity myth” that offers a symbolic resolution to the ongoing societal tensions and legitimises them among skeptics. The first wave of branded activism failed because firms struggled to reallocate the frustrations of individuals in “populist worlds.” This conflict can only be solved where citizens think it belongs, in the corporate world. Today, in opposition to popular belief, the purposeful generation and management of conflict can be used as a strategy to generate trust and legitimacy among citizens, and ultimately a position of leadership for businesses who unapologetically embrace their political nature.

07.

Foreign Affairs November 2016 cover on the rise of populism illustrated by artist Jon Berkeley.

To reinstate trust, business needs to target business.

Up until this moment, this article has only allocated an opportunity within the domains of identity. The actions and practices that accompany alternative corporate identities are not predetermined. It’s the mission of activists and social movements to use this corporate need as an opportunity to couple alternative corporate political identities with alternative political practices as well. The development of activist business strategies requires the understanding of the dynamics and mechanisms of Corporate Political Action (CPA), but most importantly the will of both corporations and activists to engage in sincere collaboration. This is not a given.

08.

An anti-corporate corporation might sound like a big paradox, but navigating paradoxes has become one of the most (if not the most) important skills in contemporary informational societies. We could argue that a real estate mogul running as an anti-establishment presidential candidate was an inconsistent idea, but the explicit attack on him by the corporate establishment did not diminish Trump’s appeal. Instead, it legitimised his positioning.

C[13]On Business Unity & Democratic Health

The business community is the most powerful interest group in society and, above a certain scale, business is politics. Corporate Political Action occurs whether there is a legal mechanism or not, but the political nature of business is a controversial issue.

While companies have traditionally and intentionally chosen to exercise political activity opaquely, activists and other interest groups do not recognise the legitimacy of business as a political constituent. While competing for technological disruption and efficiency in its business models, the corporate community has traditionally refused the task of cultural and political criticism, relegating it to the other actors. On the other hand, the weight of Marxist tradition and Critical Theory in the world of activism has helped to draw a monochromatic neoliberal representation of business organisations (Rushkoff, 2005). As a consequence, while there are strong links and fluid collaboration among activism, academia, and arts, the corporate world is commonly perceived as the enemy. This monolithic conception of business is the already existing ideology that serves as a foundational myth for most contemporary populist narratives and the global anxiety the critical should address. On the other hand, the factual existence of “business unity,” understood as an impediment to the effective democratic functioning of society, is a long-time discussed academic topic with both supporters and detractors. In The Structure of Corporate Political Action (1992), Mark Mizruchi brought an interesting perspective by pointing out that firms do not always act according to their belief or direct interest but as a result of structural conditions such as “market constraints,” “common stakeholders,” and particularly “direct and indirect interlocks” with bigger corporate or financial institutions. In this conceptual framework, the question is not whether the world of business is united, but under which conditions it happens to act unitarily. The results of his research conclude that firms that are interdependent through “market constraints,” “common stakeholders,” or “direct or indirect interlocks” tend to develop similar corporate political behaviours. However, the influence of “indirect interlocks” in companies’ direction boards is by far the most important structural factor. This reveals that the network of corporate interlocks is centralised and hierarchical in a way that a central firm interlocked with a number of peripheral firms influences the behaviours of these in its favor. The higher in the hierarchy, the more central the firm, and the more similar the behaviour of firms in the same structural position. Financial institutions occupy the top of the network. Firms indirectly interlocked through a financial institution tend to have a higher ratio of similar CPA (Mizruchi,1993: 235-255).

09.

CPA (Corporate Political Action) – “Any deliberate firm action intended to influence governmental policy or process.”

C[14]A Contemporary Framework of CPA

Taking these two insights in consideration, the traditional positioning “activist vs. business” does not seem the most efficient way to achieve political change. Activists should rather aim to create structural frameworks that foster logics of disunion within the corporate world – which might involve logics of union with certain corporations – in order to achieve an emergent structural condition that allows to harness the power of certain businesses against others.

In order to explain the tactic movements in detail, it is first necessary to understand the basics of Corporate Political Action (CPA).

10.

CPA System Map

Institutions

On the top of this hierarchy are national and supranational institutions, both political and economical. The former ones have the capability to set the legal framework, and the latter ones have the ability to set the financial framework.

Interest Groups

In the intermediate level are market and non-market organisations and interest groups. The firms and other groups situated in the mid-level of the map share the same capabilities of influence and agency on citizens and the government, as well as competition among each other.

Non-Organised Actors

In the lower level are non-organised citizens in all possible roles. Apart from the democratic vote and consumption patterns, the immediate ability of this group to intentionally influence the behaviour of organised groups is limited.

Intermediaries

As some of the mechanisms to exercise relationships of agency and influence among actors have evolved into professional disciplines, and to make those channels explicitly visible, the system map confers these actors a special role as intermediaries.

Internal Dynamics

The internal power dynamics of firms have been represented through the existence of several interest groups within those firms.

This map is the result of taking the Environmental Dynamics Model of CPA (Attarça, 2017) and adding some modifications according to the lecture of Research in Corporate Political Action: Integration and Assessment (Getz, 1997), The Structure of Corporate Political Action (Mizruchi,1992) and The Network of Global Corporate Control (Vitali, Glattfelder & Battiston, 2011).

C[15] Critical Business Strategy

Social movements and activists have limited legal and economic resources to influence politics. However, particularly in times of social instability such as what is being seen in today’s climate, they have high symbolic capabilities to mobilise the public. These capabilities should be used as a legitimising tool in favour of the partnered “critical firms” that, in exchange, would provide access or collaborative use of their political resources (lobbying, lawyers, PAC Donations, network, media links…). Applying this strategy to the corporate world by defining a clear hegemonic undesired political practice, social movements and critical firms should define clear corporate antagonists. This serves to present the partnered “critical firm” as a legitimate “anti-corporate” actor that fosters a counter-hegemonic political practice. This kind of strategic collaboration is imported from what CSR practice has done before. However, the explicitly political treatment of the issue and the clear strategy of conflict should generate a different outcome.

C[16]Counter-Hegemonic Political Environment

This environmental scenario is an evolution of the “social controversy” scenario presented by Attrarça. In this scenario, the impact of a particular policy is widespread and affects a variety of interest groups and society as a whole. The industry tends to act as a whole through trade and employers unions. In order to reach a counter-hegemonic political environment, the “critical firm” can then intentionally act against the hegemonic industry practice and its immediate perceived interest, so as to strengthen its ties with alternative stakeholder and interest groups that legitimate the firm among the public opinion. This favours the competitive advantage of the firm, in detriment of its competitors. If the success of the “critical/counter-hegemonic” firm is widespread, others might progressively follow in its positioning. Tactic movements by activists and critical firms should be addressed towards the consecution of this scenario.

C[16] The Future of CPA

This is a practical and contemporary tool for the development of activist business strategies. However, the political capabilities of business by far exceed the participation of existing structures of partisan support. Technology, and by extension the actors funding and managing technological processes of change – both corporate and non-corporate – are already shaping the systems and structures that will replace the actual mechanisms of political action. The way services, networks, data, infrastructure, and credit work influences the way life is organised on the planet in a far more pervasive way than punctual participation in a political process; it is politics in its own right. Is there any bigger menace to the financial establishment than the block chain? Does any technology compromise not only the role of traditional media, but the state itself in a way that affects more than digital platforms? Aren’t competing companies already offering competing visions of the future? Maybe the future of CPA is less about partisan support and more about overcoming partisan politics. Maybe the real value of activist CPA is less in the support of one particular policy or candidate and more in making the processes of political construction visible and understandable.

The idea that social movements and business firms could develop shared political projects and that those firms could get a competitive advantage for allowing it defies traditional perceptions and requires attitudinal changes in both actors. But the environmental conditions suggest the opportunity is real. In case it materialises, the same conflictive understandings that circulate concerning CSR will emerge: Is the Critical Firm the result of a successful strategy of social movements to influence the corporate world? Or the commodification of critique and activism for economic exploitation?

Unavoidably both.

 

 

Goodness had become niceness. I felt incredibly uncomfortable.

Rem Koolhaas (Wired, 2000)

Projects

Description

Client

P[09]Bio-Fold
FRAKTA Fetish for a Biodegradable Material Culture

IKEA: SPACE10

[+]

Bio-Fold stands at the intersection of material technology and cultural strategy. It deals with critical global issues such as plastic waste, soil scarcity, and deforestation due to agricultural development. Playing with cultural heritage, the project uses FRAKTA, IKEA’s iconic tote bag, as a symbolic device for the introduction of an already existing technology: vacuum bagging, in this case applied to biocomposite materials.

[ ]See Full Project

Location

Copenhagen [Denmark]

Year

2019 - Present

Output

Fabrication method | Digital interface

P[08]Seiche
Automated Bureaucracy as a Pathway to Fluid Citizenship

Strelka Institute: The New Normal

[+]

Overlapping jurisdictions and supranational infrastructures generate an increasingly complex network topology; the design, management, and mapping of their interactions is therefore a crucial task. Seiche is a speculative proposal for a visual programming platform enabling the definition and management of techno-legal procedures of information exchange between institutions that regulate such systems and the organisations that operate within.

[ ]See Full Project

Location

Khorgos [Kazakhstan]

Year

2018 - Present

Output

Speculative short film | Article | Interactive installation

P[07]Siren
Audiovisual Arctic Poem on Connective Alienation

Strelka Institute: The New Normal

[+]

Siren oscillates between the silence of the now deserted destination node of Magadan and the fullness of the fragmented archives that capture its evolution from a place of extraction to a place of archive. It emerges from statistical and interview-based research into port automation and the global inversion of gender patterns in supply chain employment...

[ ]See Full Project

Location

Kolyma [Russia]

Year

2018

Output

Speculative short film

P[06]Æffect
Acid Infused Journal on Innovation Management

UAL: Central Saint Martins

[+]

Æffect grew as a bottom-up student-led initiative to create a strong and self-perpetuating community connecting innovation management students at CSM with alumni, staff and industry leaders through a mentorship scheme, an academic journal and web platform...

[ ]See Full Project

Location

London [UK]

Year

2017 - 2018

Output

Mentorship scheme | Academic journal | Web platform

P[05]Electric Cloud
Decentralised Networks of Energy Exchange

EDF: Électricité de France

[+]

The combined disruption of smart home devices and decentralised energy production and storage systems favour a progressive switch to ‘prosumerism’ in the energy market. Electric Cloud provided a strategy for EDF to adopt an ambivalent position as managers and traders in energy exchange networks, a role that would help them thrive in both a centralised or decentralised scenario...

[ ]See Full Project

Location

London [UK]

Year

2016 - 2017

Output

Business model | Strategic road map

P[04]Critical Firm
Political Conflict as a Business Strategy in the Age of Purpose

Self-directed

[+]

With ongoing, deep, systemic trust crises across western societies, the rise of populist politics can be understood as a failure of corporate social responsibility - the hegemonic identity of the corporate establishment during the last two decades - to engage extensive sectors of a highly polarised population. To reinstate trust among those sectors, the corporate world needs to perform a parallelism that offers symbolic resolutions to the ongoing societal tensions...

[ ]See Full Project

Location

London [UK]

Year

2016 - 2017

Output

Strategic report | System map

P[03]Discourse on Trends
Assembly Toolkit for Authenticity in the Digital Fluid

Self-directed

[+]

A shift towards fluidity in the discourse of authenticity in gender, sexual, and racial identity has already established the generating of a new structure of power and knowledge. As technology continues to dilute the lines between physical and digital space and persona, a new regime of truth on authenticity and identity around fluidity between physical and digital environments will follow…

[ ]See Full Project

Location

London [UK]

Year

2016 - 2017

Output

Strategic report | System map

P[02]Radical Swissness
An Architectural Framework for the Swiss Vernacular

group8

[+]

Define and perfection a framework and methodology for the development of architectural competitions within the Swiss context (a.k.a. domesticating the creative willpower of multidisciplinar international teams to fit the swiss vernacular...

[ ]See Full Project

Location:

Genève [Switzerland]

Year:

2014-2015

Output:

Architectural competition [with several awards]

P[01]UNOG
Energetic Renovation of the United Nations Palace

group8

[+]

In a demonstration of its commitment to the Strategic Heritage Plan, the Swiss Federal Council participated in the renovation of the “Palais des Nations” through a voluntary contribution of CHF 50 million. The aim of the renovation project was to bring The United Nations Palace into line with the concept of a "green building"...

[ ]See Full Project

Location

Genève [Switzerland]

Year

2012 - 2014

Output

Restored building | Automated energy management system