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UN-Habitat and the Spanish Council of Architects join forces to promote global debate on access to housing at the 2022 UIA International Forum

  • The two institutions sign a collaboration agreement to help identify barriers to access to decent and adequate housing
  • UN-Habitat will also support the development of the conceptual documentation and promote possible actions plans in the medium and long term on access to housing

Madrid, 11th of April 2022. The Spanish Council of Architects (CSCAE), as the driving force behind the UIA 2022 International Forum “Affordable Housing Activation: Removing Barriers”, has signed a collaboration agreement with UN Habitat to promote access to adequate housing through the UIA International Forum. 

In this sense, the UIA 2022 International Forum will be enriched by the contribution of UN-Habitat in the conceptual, technical, and national and global advocacy areas. In addition, this alliance will allow us to continue promoting the generation of specialized knowledge and advocacy strategies for the development of socially inclusive, safe, sustainable, and efficient cities, through the formulation of housing strategies and concrete proposals with a human rights perspective, and housing at the center.

Marta Vall-llossera Ferran, president of CSCAE, underlined the importance of this agreement: “Access to housing is a global problem and, from the outset, we have worked to get relevant agents at all levels involved in the UIA 2022 International Forum, forging alliances and creating a framework for collaborative work. In this sense, UN-Habitat’s contributions will be decisive both in the analysis and in the collective search for solutions”.   

Angela Balldellou, Executive Director of the AHA Forum, added: “Having the support of UN-Habitat from the conception of the project perfectly exemplifies the international scope and scale of the UIA International Forum. UN-Habitat will help us to mobilize key international actors to lay the groundwork for addressing the complexity of the issue of access to housing in the medium and long term, and to move towards a multilateral declaration for action”.

For her part, Carmen Sánchez-Miranda, head of the UN-Habitat office in Spain said: “Achieving the right to adequate housing for all must be recognized as a shared responsibility, and this Forum will be the setting for a fruitful discussion to also highlight the role of architects and professionals in identifying solutions to existing barriers”.

A global movement to move towards a multilateral declaration

More than 70 international experts of relevance of Juan Verde, Richard Sennett, Saskia Sassen, Odile Deck, Ben van Berkel, Stefano Boeri, Joan Clos, Paul Karakusevic, Lluis de Mello, Sergio Magalhaes, Sara Topelson and Martha Thorne, among others, and representatives of the world’s leading institutions and organizations will reflect on housing affordability from May 18 to 20 in Madrid, making the Spanish capital the epicenter of the global debate on decent and adequate housing, with the objective of moving towards a multilateral declaration. 

In this sense, the UIA 2022 International Forum “Affordable Housing Activation: Removing Barriers”, aims to foster international collaboration, creating a collaborative, innovative, avant-garde, and paradigmatic framework that will allow sharing cases and visions from the professional perspectives involved in the whole process (design, financing, management and production) of affordable housing, as well as the policies and regulations that facilitate it. The framework will also allow to analyze and synthesize global data and the mismatches to be corrected to generate an adequate supply to demand. All this with an inclusive, diverse, analytical, rigorous, and cross-cutting approach to determine the current state of access to housing and promote possible action plans in the medium and long term. 

The first global platform for content related to housing accessibility

The UIA 2022 International Forum is an event of maximum international impact whose objective is to contribute to improving access to affordable, decent, and adequate housing around the world, through the generation of global networks and alliances that promote shared knowledge. To this end, the Forum has the first global platform of content related to housing accessibility, with the participation of international experts in the fields of architecture, governance, energy, engineering, economics, urban planning, environment, sociology, design, technology and innovation, and will feature Artificial Intelligence and the first dynamic Atlases linked to hundreds of qualitative indicators.

The website www.ahamadrid.com serves as a platform to share exemplary cases from the 5 continents and specific visions from the analysis of the barriers that hinder access to housing. In this sense, solutions and comprehensive views capable of “sewing” the barriers from architecture and urban planning are proposed and involving all the agents with the capacity to mark lines of action in the long term, around a future international agreement with the maximum support of organizations, governments, entities and institutions; capable of concentrating and reaching a consensus on the minimum keys to habitability hand in hand with sustainability.