As a part of a democratic demand for transparency in urban development processes it is important that design professionals hold the ability to scrutinise their own work process, and at certain stages let go of predefined ideas of future realities.
The work of Sandra Kopljar’s dissertation revolves around how design professionals perceive options for design in such situations. A basic assumption that is applied to Kopljar’s research, is that a design professional continuously relates to things outside the immediate characteristics of a design task.
In Kopljar’s work, theories of affordance and affect have, together with interventionist methods, been used to situate and investigate design professionals’ expectations in regard to educational background, municipal and national planning directives and regional and global development demands. Kopljar has let observations of professionals’ perception inform a theoretical diversification and reconsideration of what we mean by affordance, or action potential. In this regard, sound interventions have proved to be an effective method. Through simulations of possible future soundscapes, participating professionals could address and express their immediate experiences. This broadening of a perceptive spectrum could thus function as a supplement to the predominant reliance on hypothetical and expected understandings of an environment. The sound interventions have in themselves become a method for unsettling expectations. In addition to these informantbased, on-site interventions in the area of development in Lund NE/Brunnshög outside Lund in Sweden, two performed actions comment on the ongoing planning strategies related to Science Village Scandinavia and the area Lund NE/ Brunnshög. The first of these, entitled Uttered Expectations, publicly broadcast the answers gathered from the previous questionnaire-based interventions in their entirety. The other event, entitled Excursion to the Fictive and Factual Landscape of a Future Science Village in Lund, was a concerted reading that problematised the rhetoric of an ongoing planning process. In Kopljar’s research, it is suggested that predetermined expectations of change profoundly steer distinguishable options for designed environmental alteration, but also that these expectations are alterable in acts where “the professional eye” is given an opportunity for self-reflection.