Work details
Application Number 0001001857
Author Redondo, Ana , Spain
Coauthors Jané, Aleix , Spain
Redondo, Laura , Spain
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Work title: Re-establishing Moral Borders (…) 0001001857 (0001001857)

Moral borders are conceptual borders that we constantly perform in our everyday lives. Not only are we mere observers, but also main executors of them. We have built our civilization erasing the border. Our society seems to understand morality as such a personal matter that we have come to believe it as something entirely subjective. But, how subjective can we be in a world we all have to share? Is it possible a universal morality from the most basic human level? Our society is no longer being defined by cultures. Collective identities are desappearing and the age of hyperindividualism is taking place. The “new culture of consumption” is produncing a smooth of the territories in order to ease a later execution of the homogeneous. In that process the convergence of big forces (cities, countries, companies...) creates strong connections between them, but also produces areas of exclusion. The existence of these areas of exclusion is the main cause of the ecological, social and economical crisis of today. READER: Who is the subject that will eventually perform morality? EDITOR: The entire civilization needs to be examinated in order to recognize which are the basic human needs that have to motivate our actions and desires. First, we have to identify the wrong needs that are leading our lives. Then, the intensity of these needs in relation to its localization. READER: Where is the most critical place to act morally? EDITOR: There is no doubt urban cities have become the perfect habitat for inmorallity to spread. Urban models, linked to the evolution of transport and movility, are on the side of individualism. Cities have lost its social nature to lead economic growth, but in its way it has also lost its independence to survive. Consequently, urban population is completely subordinated to car dependency and our resources to live (food, goods, energy...) are not considered within the city margins. We have created a society with no limits, no borders and now it is beginning to glimpse its insostenibility. The peak oil is a driving force for change and new technologies are call to replace the non-renewable energies that mantain our cities. But despite an energy change, it is still necessary to carry out a moral change. This moral change has more to do with our human needs and the reduction of massive consumption. READER: What conditions in the city will eventually permit the implementation of this moral change? EDITOR: Let us first consider what are the specific human needs. For that we turn to Maslow’s hierarchy of needs in his Theory of Human Motivation in 1943. According to this psychologist theory, human needs are represented as a pyramid with the most basic needs at the botton (physiological, safety, love and belonging, and esteem) and the need for self-actualization at the top. Consequently, we would satisfy an specific need to the extent the previous needs had been settled. The difference is that whereas the basic needs can be satisfied, the self-actualization need is a driving force that stimulates our lives. The aim of this analysis is to identify the necessary conditions to develope these human needs in our cities in detriment of the constant search of satisfaction from consumption. Therefore, the new typology must provide a greater connection between the elements that composed a city: energy, movility, street infrastructure, community resources, edifications, green areas, society organizations and inhabitants. Finally,all that factors need to be focus on the recovery of collective identities and the growth of other dimensions such as the social, cultural, political, phylosopycal, spiritual, artistical and loving. READER: What are the set of tools that will permit the progress of this new civilization? EDITOR: To begin with, our concept of progress needs to be cut off from product consumption and ownerships. Today we live with a perception of pseudo-progress. For exemple, in the past people need to go to the fountain to get water. The progress came to the cities with the arrive of tap water. Today, bottle water is similar to go to the fountain, bottle it and pay for it. We propose that city progress should be defined by knowledge growth. The Information and Communication technological innovations are call to be the tools to radically redefine the running of society and reach major productivity, efficiency and social progress. It is also necessary a reorganization of the urban project. Architects must work with the administrations to apply regulatory systems of density constraints, movility and relocation of uses to shape the territory for human needs. Finally, one more tool could be apply... as the world population is predicted to grow, birth rates constraints could be the (im)moral tool to assure the habitability in the cities.