Alvaro Siza’s Design Strategy: An Insight into Critical Regionalism

By the emergence of the debate over the failure of Regionalism in the late 1970s, Critical Regional­ism was introduced as a different way to respond to the state of architecture in the post-war era. Critical Regionalism is most often understood as a discourse that not only mediates the language of modern architecture with the local cultures but also revives the relation between architecture and spectator as indexed by capitalism. Since the inception of Critical Regionalism, a large number of architectural practices have emerged around the globe; however, the work of the well-known Portuguese architect, Álvaro Siza, is considered as a unique case amongst works associated with the discourse of Critical Regionalism. This paper intends to respond to a number of questions, including; what are the origins of Critical Regionalism? How does Siza’s design strategy correspond to the thematic of Critical Regionalism? How does Siza recover the relation between object and subject in most of his projects? Using Siza’s housing project for the Malagueira district in Évora, Portugal, this article will attempt to answer these questions, and highlight Alvaro Siza’s design procedure which goes beyond the existing discourse of Critical Regionalism and contributes to our understanding of this practice.

The “Ecological Approach” to GIS Implementation in Low Income Countries’ and the Role of Universities: Union of Municipalities of Joumeh Case Study

This paper explores the effectiveness of approaches used for the implementation of technology within central governments specifically Geographic Information Systems (GIS). It examines the extent to which various strategies to GIS implementation and its roll out to users within an organization is crucial for its long term assimilation. Depending on the contextual requirements, various implementation strategies exist spanning from the most revolutionary to the most evolutionary, which have an influence on the success of GIS projects and the realization of resulting business benefits within the central governments. This research compares between two strategies of GIS implementation within the Lebanese Municipalities. The first strategy is the “Technological Approach” which is focused on technology acquisition, overlaid on existing governmental frameworks. This approach gives minimal attention to capability building and the long term sustainability of the implemented program. The second strategy, referred to as the “Ecological Approach”, is naturally oriented to the function of the organization. This approach stresses on fostering the evolution of the program and on building the human capabilities. The Union of the Joumeh Municipalities will be presented as a case study under the “Ecological Approach” and the role of the GIS Center at the University of Balamand will be highlighted. Thus, this research contributes to the development of knowledge on technology implementation and the vital role of academia in the specific context of the Lebanese public sector so that this experience may pave the way for further applications.

Technical Determinants of Success in Quality Management Systems Implementation in the Automotive Industry

The popularity of quality management system models continues to grow despite the transitional crisis in 2008. Their development is associated with demands of the new requirements for entrepreneurs, such as risk analysis projects and more emphasis on supervision of outsourced processes. In parallel, it is appropriate to focus attention on the selection of companies aspiring to a quality management system. This is particularly important in the automotive supplier industry, where requirements transferred to the levels in the supply chain should be clear, transparent and fairly satisfied. The author has carried out a series of researches aimed at finding the factors that allow for the effective implementation of the quality management system in automotive companies. The research was focused on four groups of companies: 1) manufacturing (parts and assemblies for the purpose of sale or for vehicle manufacturers), 2) service (repair and maintenance of the car) 3) services for the transport of goods or people, 4) commercial (auto parts and vehicles). The identified determinants were divided into two types of criteria: internal and external, as well as hard and soft. The article presents the hard – technical factors that an automotive company must meet in order to achieve the goal of the quality management system implementation.

Critical Success Factors of Information Technology Projects

Information Technology (IT) is being used by almost all organizations throughout the world. However its success at supporting and improving business is debatable. There is always the risk of IT project failure and studies have proven that a large number of IT projects indeed do fail. There are many components that further the success of IT projects; these have been studied in previous studies. Studies have found the most necessary components for success in software development projects, executive information systems etc. In this study previous literatures that have looked into these success promoting factors have been critically reviewed and analyzed. 15 Critical Success Factors (CSF) of IT projects were enlisted and examined. These factors can be applied to all IT projects and is not specific to a particular type of IT/IS project. A hypothesis was also generated after the evaluation of the factors.