Transversal Comparative Approach to Middle-Class Mass Housing
Keywords:Inventory, Comparative analysis, mass housing, neighbourhood, policies, interdisciplinarity
The COST-Action (CA 18137) on Middle Class Mass Housing in Europe (MCMH-EU) has established a transnational scientific network to document the productions of middle-class mass housing built in Europe since the 1950s in order to investigate this specific topic and share knowledge. Considering that middle-class mass housing dominates most of our cities, the research translates into the study of the extensive development of cities in Europe after World War II. The breadth of the theme and the differences between the countries make it difficult to construct a systematic and unified criticism of middle-class mass housing, albeit concentrating on the post-war period. The COST-Action has the goal to build a network to gather research representing the pooled knowledge and experiences from the network of multidisciplinary researchers. So, transversally throughout the Working Groups, an inventory of case studies, a collection of articles, and studies on the policies were produced. This paper elaborates on the collected and produced material and data in order to trigger comparisons and reflections on the approaches and methodologies to face the complexity of middle-class mass housing topic. The comparison was built by using different methods intersecting multiple points of view and following specific thematic tracks that seek to deconstruct the complexity of the middle-class mass housing topic into singular aspects. This paper presents the results of data analyses, visualisation techniques and comparative studies to identify massification processes, morphological structures, demographic and policy developments. It shows a combination of several methods to build a cross-sectional and systematic approach to the diverse knowledge envisioned to develop a methodology for future research. This can be especially useful for future developments and insights towards joint or individual European guidelines, laws and policies to improve the dilapidated housing stock, current housing situation and to compete the housing crisis in general.