The Design for a Living World class at HFBK Hamburg will examine issues relating to water, land and soil, essential elements that the residents of the Prinzessinnengarten neighbourhood live with every day but rarely ask questions about. Beyond the current real estate market, which focuses on land value, the students will look at the value of the soil. Is more fertile soil needed? Beyond taking water as a given natural resource, they will research ways that the residents can use more water, since the groundwater is currently too high. They will ask whether living on house boats is an affordable option. Taking current conditions as the starting point, the students will engage residents in a conversation about possible future scenarios using the World Café format. They will look at what the water, land and soil conditions will be like 50 years from now. The findings will then be discussed with a local lawyer (legal expert) and writer (journalist) who are familiar with the current situation and can think outside the box about economics, politics, and culture. Finally, the new knowledge will be presented in the form of a Manual and shared with residents. A walking tour of local sites will allow residents to consider anew the challenges they face, predictions for the future and the present actions being taken toward a more resilient neighbourhood.
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