Dr. Alexander is the author of numerous books and papers. He has initiated a new approach to architectural thinking, in which the same set of laws determines the structure of a city; a building; or a single room. He has spent most of his life in searching for these laws. His approach to solving this universal problem takes advantage of scientific reasoning, and totally opposes other, unscientific approaches based on fashion, ideology, or arbitrary personal preferences. This is so different from the way architecture has been taught since the second world war that it causes conflicts with established architectural schools.
Alexander offers definitive solutions to the problems of urban architecture and design. It is a great pity that these were not adopted when first published. Fortunately, a small number of his ideas have been incorporated into the "New Urbanism". Nevertheless, this very recent movement by no means represents a wholesale application of his results. Alexander has actually abstracted the process by which organic and inorganic forms evolve -- which is the same process that governs the growth of a city. These results lie at the basis of how matter organizes itself coherently, and are the opposite of the modern planning approach in which grids, zones, roads, and buildings, based on some preconceived design on paper, are imposed on human activity. These results will be expounded at length in the four-volume The Nature of Order [see Alexander's Nature of Order webpage].