T-AP SI: uVITAL - User-Valued Innovations for Social Housing Upgrading through Trans-Atlantic Living Labs

  • Kowaltowski, Doris C. C. K. (PI)
  • Kabisch, Sigrun (PI)
  • van Oel, Clarine (PI)
  • Tzortzopoulos, Patricia (PI)
  • Soliman Junior, Joao (CoI)
  • Kagioglou, Michail (CoI)
  • Awwal, Samira (Researcher Studentship)

Project: Research

Project Details


Housing debates concentrate less on upgrading than on new buildings, even though upgrading can have positive social, health and financial outcomes for low-income populations. Upgrading the existing stock of social housing (SH) offers an opportunity to ease effects of inadequate housing through improvements; alleviate housing deficits; and promote sustainability. Upgrading efforts involve sensitive processes, and this research proposal uses Living Labs (LLs) as social innovations to communicate with SH agents like housing associations and local authorities (United Kingdom (UK), Germany (DE)) and residents (Brazil (BR), the Netherlands (NL)) to create and validate solutions for upgrading programmes. Especially residential or user values are important to grasp to solve social and environmental issues. There is an urgent need to enhance communication between SH agents and users, and this proposal emphasizes the potential of new visualization approaches, such as gaming, Virtual Reality (VR), and Building Information Modelling (BIM) as means to bridge boundaries between stakeholders and users. Following Star and Griesemer (1989), these visualizations can be considered as Boundary Objects (BOs), and will be flexible enough to adapt to individual needs of involved stakeholders, yet specific enough to maintain a common meaning across all different stakeholders to support decision-making in participatory procedures. A transatlantic articulated nexus between research institutions in BR, DE, NL and UK orchestrates the LL experiences, and will contribute to idea generation and test decision-making efficiency. Each of these institutions investigates specific contexts and the combined nexus will increase understanding of how SH upgrading processes promote sustainability under different climatological conditions. Since visualisations are expected to act as boundary objects, the locally specific approaches and tools will be compared in comparative case studies to assess social innovation procedures; resolve conflicting understanding of problems and needs; to stimulate value-adding results; explore synergies between stakeholders as positive solutions to a global social problem.
Effective start/end date1/01/2031/12/22


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