Observatorio de I+D+i UPM

Memorias de investigación
Communications at congresses:
Contemporary housing: words for a theory
Research Areas
  • Building of houses,
  • Architecture,
  • Contemporary architecture
For over a century, considerations on housing have developed independently from those concerning institutional and public architecture. To such degree that research methods, theoretical approaches, critical analysis or classification systems differ when focusing on each of these two fields. Recently, this situation has become especially pronounced: speaking about housing today implies the use of a specific vocabulary associated to rationalism, objectivity, functionalism or economy, far from the one that has supported the formalist and structural (and because of this, economic) wastes in recent past. The aim of this paper is to detect and analyse some of the terms that are starting to constitute a representative vocabulary of the housing design conditions of the new century and to try to base the construction of theoretical foundations for a future lexicon on them. This attempt of systematization tries to infer design theory from the projects themselves with the support of the ideas that architects put forward and critics provide. The ultimate purpose is to identify procedures of renovation, experimental initiatives and new strategies for contemporary housing design. Terms as passing-by home, domestic dispersion, atomization, flexibility, neutrality, post-public space, cityhousing reversibility or hybrid entities come together with recent experiences in which new ways of urban inhabiting consolidate, rendering inoperative conventional housing typologies. Uncovering some of these notions, which some residential schemes manifest today, can help to clarify and categorize the panorama of contemporary housing design and to generate a specific theory different from the one inherited from the Modern Movement. Exploring this new glossary reveals the continuity of many terms with the typical words of the theoretical framework from the first half of the 20th century. Others, nonetheless, have been recently shaped or have changed considerably their original meaning, such as flexibility. Others have completely disappeared like the once essential Existenzminimum, nowadays replaced with the inspiring notions of extra-space, double-space or more with less. Our effort as research team is focused on the construction of this necessary theory for housing design in times of crisis.
25th ENHR 2013 International Conference Tarragona. Overcoming the crisis: integrating the urban environment.
Tarragona, España
Start Date
End Date
From page
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25th ENHR 2013 International Conference Tarragona. Overcoming the crisis: integrating the urban environment. Book of abstracts.
  • Autor: M. Emilia Hernandez Pezzi (UPM)
  • Autor: Esperanza Macarena Campaña Barquero (UPM)
  • Autor: Gustavo Rojas Perez (UPM)
  • Autor: Andrea Torregrosa Santana (UPM)
Research Group, Departaments and Institutes related
  • Creador: Grupo de Investigación: Vivienda Colectiva
  • Departamento: Proyectos Arquitectónicos
S2i 2020 Observatorio de investigación @ UPM con la colaboración del Consejo Social UPM
Cofinanciación del MINECO en el marco del Programa INNCIDE 2011 (OTR-2011-0236)
Cofinanciación del MINECO en el marco del Programa INNPACTO (IPT-020000-2010-22)