Department of Architecture
RPG Lunchtime Presentation Series
Taking cases from the until-now little-analyzed un-demolished remains of city center neighborhoods in Shanghai, Dr. Ying ZHOU’s new book Urban Loopholes: Creative Alliances of Spatial Production in Shanghai’s City Center (2017, Birkhäuser, ISBN 978-3035611045) unpacks the seemingly anarchic and opportunistic urban spatial production system of the contemporary Chinese city to address what has perplexed Western public as well as scholars alike. The book’s concept ‘urban loophole’ reveals how the ambiguous property rights and institutional vestiges from planned economy could harbor an entrepreneurial prowess and creative potential, inflecting globalization in the context of changing local institutions. This presentation will share some of the research processes behind the book and the motivations for introducing the theoretical framework of the ‘urban loophole’ to the discipline of architecture and urbanism.
Dr. Ying Zhou is an architect and an assistant professor at the University of Hong Kong (HKU)’s Department of Architecture. Her research interest on the impact of cultural industries and new economies in East Asian cities grew out of her work with Professors Kees Christiaanse at the ETH Future Cities Lab (FCL) and with Professors Herzog & de Meuron at the ETH Studio Basel. Born in Shanghai, Dr. Zhou holds a B.S.E. in Architecture and Engineering from Princeton, a M.Arch. from the Graduate School of Design at Harvard, and a Ph.D. from the ETHZ.