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The user as protagonist and agent of design: from the Uruguayan housing cooperatives to the 'Byker Wall' of Newcastle

Grant number: 14/06102-2
Support Opportunities:Scholarships abroad - Research
Effective date (Start): September 14, 2014
Effective date (End): March 13, 2015
Field of knowledge:Applied Social Sciences - Architecture and Town Planning - Architecture and Urbanism Project
Principal Investigator:Paulo Eduardo Fonseca de Campos
Grantee:Paulo Eduardo Fonseca de Campos
Host Investigator: Peter Kellett
Host Institution: Faculdade de Arquitetura e Urbanismo (FAU). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil
Research place: Newcastle University, England  


At a moment when housing construction in Brazil reaches a quantitative level not seen in a long time, particularly in large-scale government programs, a reflection on the massive production of new dwellings is timely, particularly when using industrialized building systems , and also on the qualitative deficiencies that have been observed in architecture and urbanism.This research focuses on the user role as the protagonist and project agent in participative processes, and seeks to understand the use of this recognized project methodology as well as its economic, social and environmental implications.Initially, it highlights the Uruguayan housing cooperatives, which are among the most acknowledged and studied historical references on participative processes and whose influence deeply marked projects developed in São Paulo, especially in the 1980s and 1990s.Subsequently, the study seeks to establish possible connections between participative housing projects in Brazil, under the clear influence of Uruguayan cooperatives, and "Byker Wall Estate", built in Newcastle upon Tyne, England, with the active participation of its users in process planning and decision making. Using bibliography and field surveys, we intend to analyze the main physical characteristics that define the "Byker Wall" as well as the symbolic and affective dimensions achieved by this venture among its residents.Thereby, we trust it will be possible to identify the possibilities provided by participative processes in housing production which may outweigh a strictly productivist view, aiming for an improved architectural and urban quality of the habitat. (AU)

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