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Architecture's Radical Bureaucracy: Women who redesigned the world, 1945-2000

The project aims to study "radical bureaucracy" as a field of work within the discipline of architecture, focusing on
women's practice.

Project name: Architecture's Radical Bureaucracy: Women who redesigned the world, 1945-2000
Projektledare: Helena Mattson , KTH Arkitekturskolan
Deltagande universitet/företag/organisationer: Kungliga Tekniska högskolan
Projektperiod: 2024–2026
Finansiering: The Swedish Research Council

"Radical," in this context, refers to something that "fundamentally wants to change society" (SAOL, 2022). Women are conspicuous by their absence in the history of architecture, and a common explanation for this is the male-dominated profession of architecture.

By following the practice of women architects, the project challenges this assertion and creates alternative histories that change the historical narrative and also the definition of the discipline of architecture.

The project tracks the development from the formation of the Swedish welfare state in the 1940s to the restructuring of the Swedish model in the latter part of the 20th century, and explores the bureaucracy of the built environment as a field for women's activist architectural practices. The project includes four case studies and combines traditional archival and experimental methods.

The research has two main goals: to trace women's activism within architectural bureaucratic practices; and to examine how women's practices transformed bureaucracy into a radical field of experimentation, thereby expanding the discipline of architecture.