On 6 July, the Design, Disaster & Development Research Forum, co-organised by the UIC Barcelona School of Architecture, the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (RMIT) and Oxford Brookes University, took place in the RMIT’s emblematic headquarters in the Barcelona district of Poblenou.
The three institutions took part in organising an international forum that sought to bring to Barcelona the most prominent European scholars in the field of emergency architecture and industry to discuss aspects such as practical experience, teaching and research in areas such as disaster risk reduction, mass immigration, city resilience and recovery processes in both industrialised and developing countries.
How do we deal with the pedagogic, spatial and research challenges of global mobility, migration and social inequality? Such was the leitmotif of an event featuring representatives from a dozen academic and non-governmental institutions, including the universities of Oslo, Lisbon, Westminster, Aalto and ETH Zurich, as well as UN-Habitat and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).
There on behalf of the UIC Barcelona School of Architecture was its assistant director of International Relations, Carmen Mendoza, who, in her presentation, pointed out that “design is a right for people affected by emergency situations. We need to look at ways in which the communities affected by crises or catastrophes can take part in the ensuing reconstruction processes”.