Urban Ethics

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Bucharest – Controversies Around "Responsible" Urban Life Since the 1970s (2015 - 2018)

The focus of the presented project is on different strategies, action programs and programs of transformation which have been initiated with the overall goal of improving the quality of life and the spread of a "responsible" or "aware" urban lifestyle in the Romanian capital since the 1970s. The valuation models for urban space of each period with its specific ideological background are presented in detail, because both the socialist project as well as the inception of post-1990 debate about the nation's past, present and future – in addition to all the political, social, and economic dimensions – can profitably also be read as ethical debates about "responsible" urban lifestyle.
This hybridity of the incidental, concomitant and even opposition between different development paradigms is reflected in the Romanian capital, both in the various architectural manifestations of different periods, a persistent urbanization; at the same time, since the turn of the millennium, to a constitutive orientation to the guiding principle of "global city", as well as increasing income inequality, which in turn leads to a strong spatial segregation and social tension. The degree of destruction of existing buildings as a result of particular concepts of reconstruction, which fail to consider aggregated structures of housing, life, work, belief and transportation, both in global terms and even more so at European level, are deemed exceptional and offer historical-cultural studies applied research a variety of approaches, which are concretized on the basis of six paradigmatic locations and a combination of historical archives and source work, as well as fieldwork.