The theme of the 5th edition of the Architecture Biennale Rotterdam was Making City. By 2050, more than 7 out of 9 billion people are expected to live in cities. The major socioeconomic and environmental problems of this century are therefore urban problems. IABR 2012: Making City explored the relationship between planning, design, and policy, and the ways in which this can advance and strengthen the city.
Just as for earlier Biennales, the 5th IABR: Making City produced its own research and development program focusing, both theoretically and concretely on the interplay between planning, design and politics. With three IABR–Test Site projects, in São Paulo, Istanbul and Rotterdam, as well as seven collaborative projects with the Dutch government and a selection of ‘best practices’ from around the world, the IABR explored ways of ‘making city’ that may be future proof. The Biennale called on administrators, policymakers, politicians, market players, designers, and citizens to work on the development of the city in a more integrated way.
As part of the 5th IABR: Making City, broadcaster VPRO presented an extensive program of television and radio documentaries under the title ‘Leve de Stad’ (‘Long Live the City’).