Adhocism – an idea of improvisation

‘Adhocism’ ideas were coined in their book Adhocism: The Case for Improvisation by architect, theoretician, former Designer Charles Jencks and Nathan Silver (1972). They considered how designers could take immediate action in ways that had never been imagined in their original design by using readily available components.

In the 1960s, Hippy groups in the US explored some of those concepts, including Drop City, which had built dome dwellings from car roofs obtained cheaply from scrapyards used for reusing materials discarded by consumer society.

The Whole Earth Catalog of 1968, an encyclopaedia of new forms of life and providers of means of doing so, had some promising implications of this future.


Woodham, J. (2004). Adhocism. In A Dictionary of Modern Design. : Oxford University Press. Retrieved 21 Jan. 2021, from

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