Keywords:Modern Movement, Modern architecture, Modern housing
The following article is an edited version of the keynote presented at the 13th International docomomo Conference that took place in Seoul, Korea, on September 2014. The economic miracle, increasing transparency and growing emancipation are some of the striking advantages of modernity. However these meet their opposites in severe conflicts at both global and regional scales. Where the oppressive new meets the vulnerable old the damage is at its heaviest and often non-reversible. The history of modernity in the Western world, from the European Renaissance, the Enlightenment and the Industrial Revolution to the Machine Age provides information of the root causes of these conflicts, such as the dominance of rationality, fragmentation, the linear and short term mind frame, devotion to constant newness and ever increasing scale. The history of East Asian civilizations shows the millennia old care for the environment and for dynamic tradition. Precisely the 14th International docomomo Conference in Seoul — for the first time organized entirely in an Asian country — offers the opportunity to widen our scope. docomomo has four advantages that make it particularly useful to contribute to soften these conflicts in the future. Today it is a global organization with many different cultural backgrounds, it is multidisciplinary, it concentrates on history and on the reuse of what is already existing and it shares communal enthusiasm. Until today we concentrated our efforts mainly on the history of the Modern Movement and the restoration of its icons. We could enlarge our scope to include the reuse and transformation of the ordinary Modern Movement heritage and to research the history of modernity as well in the various cultural regions. Some proposals will be made how we could change words into structured action, in order to contribute more effectively to a circular mindset of reuse, reduce and recycle, to arrive at a sustainable future for all.