Green building (or just building) in Developed vs. Developing Countries — my thought

Reading the green UNEP report: towards a #green economy ( Population is growing rapidly, but most population growth and shift (from rural to urbanized areas) will occur in developing countries. So, a vast majority of new construction will occur in developing countries, such as China and India. Developed countries, on the other hard, will more or less “maxed out” on their┬ádeveloped urban capacity, only to retain existing buildings and make them more resource (energy and water) efficient. London, for example, will likely retain 75 percent of their existing buildings in use by year 2050.

How will this affect the practice of architecture? I cannot stop thinking about the next wave of top architects will be most active of those countries who build rapidly, professionals and innovators who can rapidly adapt to those countries’ culture, design beautiful and energy-efficient buildings and have those buildings go up quickly to accommodate influx of people going into cities. I can see the use of innovative construction methods and materials to make the process faster and deliver better buildings, and artificial intelligence to make buildings “smart” to adapt to changes. In a way, it is already happening, just look at the projects in development in the middle east and maybe in parts of China.

So how will someone like me, a relatively seasoned professional who teach sustainable architectural design in San Francisco be part of this next wave? One, I should teach and share what I am passionate for — green building, sustainability, responsibility for what you design and build. Two, deep research in innovation in architecture means and methods and project delivery. Three, write a book / papers and constantly talk about it. If I stop talking, it means I stop caring about it.

What do you think? what is your role as an architect / designer / building professional in the next 20 to 30 years?