TED Conversations

Daniel Lear

Founder & CEO, Make Architecture Happen

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Empowering communities through crowdfunded architecture

Crowdfunding has the potential to be a powerful tool for architects and designers. It is becoming a way to democratize the often rarefied world of architecture, making projects happen in neighborhoods lacking access to traditional funding sources.

Crowdfunding architecture is a way to empower communities and gives designers the freedom to rethink traditional approaches to design problems and methods of building.

By minimizing the amount of money needed to invest in projects and opening up to the community for investment, projects are validated by their potential contributions to the community.

How do you think crowdfunding will change the field of architecture and what challenges do you think the concept faces as we look towards the future?

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  • May 2 2014: http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crowdfunding

    "KickstarterĀ is the world's largest funding platform for creative projects."
    https://www.kickstarter.com/
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      May 4 2014: Rodrigo,

      I have found that Kickstarter's audience is very centered around technology specifically projects that provide tech products. Do you think that the architectural community would benefit from a more specialized audience of people? The changes to the JOBS act will soon allow anybody to invest in architecture and development projects in the form of equity-based crowdfunding, which is not currently offered through Kickstarter.I believe this will mark a huge change in the architectural industry as a whole.
      • May 4 2014: http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jumpstart_Our_Business_Startups_Act
        Crowd-funding, Kickstarter and the JOBS Act are new to me and I'm not an architect.

        I'm thinking that you are thinking about investing in an equity-based crowd-funding platform but only if the architectural community care to endorse it for financing ascetic new buildings. But what new buildings? I'm thinking about a new city library, 'neighbourhood-equity-crowd-funded', far more ascetic than something paid for by the local authority, legally entrusted to the local authority who pay for everything else including insurance. But who wants equity in a city library? What do they get out of it? So, once it is built, it is sold to the local authority at the same price as a standard ugly city library. The investors get a return and an ascetically pleasing new city library. Or to simplify it all, the extra money required to get the local authority to buy an ascetic building instead of an ugly one is raised by 'neighbourhood-donation-crowd-funding' - on Kickstarter.

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