The Bartlett Development Planning Unit


Christina Makrygianni

Christina recounts experiences of studying MSc Urban Development Planning at the Development Planning Unit

“I came from Greece, I had a thirst for knowledge 
I studied planning at University College, (of London) that's where I…
…was sure I want to live like common people, 

I want to see whatever common people see…”

Apart from proving that I am a common person, my aim is to explain why it was crucial for my job to have studied explicitly urban development planning. Coming from the traditionally spatial discipline of architecture, UDP helped me to create my paradigm shift moving from the space as the stage of human actions to the space as the active force that forms human life.

And then it happened! 2009, I was out of DPU permanently with a degree in Urban Development Planning working in Greece at that time when journalists from Germany, U.K., France, U.S.A., Belgium were coming to take pictures of us, to interview us. Cameras were presenting us as corrupted and we were posing….

Political agenda had emerged: “Development!” Development seemed so obvious in a European country that it has hardly been questioned. Until this idea is widely understood and accepted, I’m working on the implementation of European territorial policies (JESSICA, URBACT, e.t.c.) in the particularities of Greece, consulting public sector. At the same time I am researching the recent developments in the local socioeconomic environment and I am working in a team that consults the changes in capital, commercial and investment flows in many Greek Regions (after an institutional change in local government).

Current events have a spatial dimension and UDP authorized me to judge and plan in a country that could never predict this urbex image that has today.

Christina Makrygianni