Places are made as much by spaces between buildings, as they are made by the buildings themselves.
And the world of buildings has a parallel with the world of organisations and work disciplines.
The focus used to be on organisations, or work disciplines.
But over time, and with the benefit of new technology, most advances possible within organisations or within disciplines have already been achieved.
The future now lies in the spaces between organisations or disciplines. For example:
- nano-technology is where physics, biology and chemistry meet;
- sustainable regeneration is only possible if social, economic, environmental, and cultural issues are all advanced.
No one organisation can achieve the complexity required to meet the challenges of today and tomorrow.
And therefore we must all become more adept at managing the spaces between, if we are to succeed.
This means, in practice:
- enhanced partnership working within organisations, working between disciplines;
so as to build the skills and culture that will be needed:
- to create the strong, lasting partnerships between organisations and ever more work disciplines, and across private, public and voluntary sectors.
[The photograph above is the space between two buildings in Nara, Japan. While only a few feet wide, the space is interesting and inviting in its own right - even though its 'function' is just to provide somewhere to wait while a table comes free in the adjacent Tea Room.]