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The Culture of the Informal City: Innovation From Within

SPACE International Journal of Space Studies in Architecture and Urban Design
Volume: 1
Issue: 1
Mónica Alexandra Muñoz Veloza
Department of Architecture and Design, Politecnico di Torino, Turin, Italy
Received October 1, 2020 – Accepted November 2, 2020 – Published December 2, 2020

In Latin America, the massive migration flows from the countryside to the cities, and the uncontrolled expansion of these last ones, have changed the rural-urban dichotomy. The dominant hypothesis is the “penetration -physical and cultural- of the urban world into the rural world” (Guidicini, 1998). Nevertheless, many of the characteristics of rural construction are maintained in the cities, but with less concern for the quality of the environment and more attention to economic activities. This is evident in “informal” settlements, where one of the essential features is still self-build.

This paper aims to contribute to the debate on the eco-compatible requalification of “informal” housing by highlighting the collective force and the creative and participatory potential that “informal” architecture and its “popular” culture offer if combined with the scientific expertise of professional architects. In order to achieve this purpose, it is proposed to integrate two methodologies: Participatory-Action Research (PAR) and Human-Centred Design (HCD).

Informal housing; Participatory architecture; Requalification; Traditional Architecture
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This paper has been presented at the Conference “AGORA CAUMME 2020 – Mediterranean: Between Expansion and Regeneration” and selected by the Conference Scientific Committee to be published in the SPACE International Journal of Space Studies in Architecture and Urban Design. Peer review under the responsibility of the scientific committee of AGORA CAUMME 2020.


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Disclosure Statement

No potential conflict of interest was reported by the author(s).

Biographical Notes on Contributors

Mónica Alexandra Muñoz Veloza


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