Greening Modernism


  • Carl Stein




Modern Movement, Modern architecture, Modern housing


The Modern Movement is predicated on attitudes that lead directly to the efficient use of resources for building construction and operation, attitudes that are fundamental to sustainability. Also intrinsic to Modern architecture is a systematic methodology that provides the armature for a design process that focuses on a sustainable future. Understanding these issues provides valuable guidelines and tools for contemporary planning and architecture. Additionally, a wider recognition of this aspect of Modernism will reduce general hostility toward Modernism, thereby facilitating the preservation and conservation of Modern architecture built examples.

How to Cite

Stein, C. (2011). Greening Modernism. Docomomo Journal, (44), 8–15.




Author Biography

Carl Stein

Is a principal of Elemental Architecture (formerly The Stein Partnership) in New York City. Having more than forty years experience in sustainable building design and research, he divides his time between architectural practice, writing and teaching, and is the author of Greening Modernism, recently published by W. W. Norton.


Commoner, Barry, Science and Survival, New York, The Viking Press, 1971.

Geddes, Patrick, Cities in Evolution, London, Williams & Norgate, 1915

Gropius, Walter, Scope of Total Architecture, New York, Harper and Brothers Publishers, 1955.

Huxtable, Ada Luise, “The Gospel According to Giedion and Gropius Is Under Attack”, The New York Times, June 27, 1976.

Le Corbusier, The Athens Charter, Grossman Publishers, 1973, New York — Originally published anonymously in Paris, 1943.

Le Corbusier, Toward an Architecture, The Getty Research Institute, 2007 — Originally published as Vers Une Architecture, Paris, 1924.

Meadows, Donatella H. et al., The Limits to Growth, New York, Signet, 1972.

Stein, Carl, Energy Conscious Architecture, National Council of Architectural Registration Boards, Washington, 1993.

Stein, Carl, Greening Modernism, New York, W. W. Norton, 2010.

Stein, Richard G., Architecture and Energy, New York, Anchor Press, 1977.