Density and sparsity, height and depth, hot and cold, centre and periphery, wet and dry, war and conflict: People the world over have adapted their living practices, architectures, and landscapes to extreme conditions. In our globalised era, local conceptions of the ideal dwelling, city, and community are increasingly exposed to alternative understandings. How do the house in the country and the flat in the skyscraper, the remote mountainvillage and the hyper-dense world city, the frigid arctic science station and the blazing desert financialdistrict differ from and resemble one another? Can extreme environments foster innovative lifestyles that are conducive to community and inspire beneficial future urbanisms? Or do the technical solutions relied upon to help people cope with extremes of population, climate, light, height, and other factors necessarily distance people from each other and from the natural environment?
This interdisciplinary conference probes the limits to community, architecture, and urbanism from the perspectives of urban studies, geography, design, architecture, anthropology, sociology, and other fields and disciplines.