"The RCA's reputation is going down pretty fast"

Comments update: London's Royal College of Art is in the spotlight this week on Dezeen following more staff departures and the suspension of its world-famous Design Interactions course. Read on for more on this and explore our comments page to keep up with the latest discussions.

What's going on at the RCA? RCA rector Paul Thompson sent an internal email accusing departing staff of forcing the school to suspend one of its most important courses. The story revealed the latest in a string of staff losses – prompting readers to question the institution's position as the world's top design school.

"The RCA's reputation is going down pretty fast," wrote Andrew, who went on to comment on a changing staff-to-student ratio at the college.

One reader criticised Thompson's handling of the situation, while others felt it was "reasonable" to expect staff to serve their full notice.

"It seems as though there's a culture of fear at the RCA," said an anonymous commenter. "Staff at a creative institution shouldn't feel threatened – it's just not good for atmosphere or the students." Read the comments on this story »

Portrait of Zaha Hadid by Mary McCartney
Portrait of Zaha Hadid by Mary McCartney

Medal melodrama: Zaha Hadid was named as the recipient of the 2016 Royal Gold Medal for architecture, but a subsequent interview on BBC Radio 4's Today programme dominated headlines after quickly going sour.

"She's not a politician, she's someone who has just been awarded a very prestigious medal for her architectural achievements and if I were her I'd have felt disappointed and ambushed by the unconstructive tone and line of questioning," said Paul.

"This is what passes for journalism these days," added Derek. "Simple scandalising on no facts whatsoever; kudos to Hadid for not taking any of the bullsh*t." Read the comments on this story »

Norman Foster
Exodus of London creatives is "inevitable" says Norman Foster

London's burning: the debate surrounding the future of London as a creative centre rumbled on after Norman Foster said that rising costs would push out designers and artists – but suggested it might not be a bad thing. His comments sparked a debate about wages in the creative industries.

"Why don't [employers] just pay creatives correctly, like in other businesses?" asked Boby.

"This is going to effect more than those employed in the creative industries," proffered Sam. "Many other previously secure vocations such as law, medicine and engineering are going to provide less and less ability for new generations to live in the city." Read the comments on this story »

Diamond Lotus by Vo Trong Nghia Architects
Diamond Lotus by Vo Trong Nghia Architects

Tree tops: Vietnamese studio Vo Trong Nghia Architects unveiled plans for a trio of towers linked by bridges and covered in bamboo plants this week.

"It looks OK," said Jonathan Tuffin, "but if the balconies are privately owned you can forget about it being covered in bamboo for the duration."

"The building is not very interesting or beautiful," argued Hej, "but it's important to provide green living areas for people in fast-growing and polluted cities." Read the comments on this story »

Main image via Lokkee on Instagram.