REGIONAL INTEGRATION AND GOVERNANCE, LAND MARKET, ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN
WORKING GROUP COORDINATOR
Dr. Ledian Bregasi
Be from Albania, Kosovo, Macedonia (F.Y.R.O.M), Montenegro.
(equal to ACCOMPANYING FEE)
Deadline for the Abstract Submission: 20/05/2017
Deadline for the Full Paper Submission: 20/06/2017
Albania has entered another phase of development after the transition period of post-communism between 1991 and 2010. After a fist decade of political instability and social-economic tensions, the country experienced a second decade of stabilization and growth at 6% per annum. During this period the GDP/capita increased from 1250 USD in 1991 to 3900 in 2010. The country became member of NATO and progressed towards EU accession. Since 2011 the wave of recession hit also Albania and its social-economic stability. The country has undertaken significant reforms to formalize economy and encourage business, but isolation of the past and poor property/ownership systems do not allow significant domestic and foreign investments. However, construction industry especially private housing and real estate development has been booming to significant levels. The growth of informal settlements during 90-s, and establishment of ambitious private local construction industry has not been leaving much space for government programs in housing and urban development. This was fueled also by neoliberal policies that dominated after the period of dictatorship. Nevertheless, since 2003 more reforming measures has been undertaken to provide formalization and upgrading of informal sector, regulate private building industry, and provide new programs for social housing and crediting schemes.
The economic crisis of 2010 that hit construction and banking industry, as well as private investments in housing and real estates, has opened many questions on which direction we must move ahead. During the last 25 years, Albanian authorities has provided some 15,000 families with a housing solution, through affordable and social housing, subsidized loans, housing allowances and improvement of existing housing. However, Albania faces serious problems when has still a considerable number of request for social housing, while it has a big number of units not yet competed or empty at the private sector.
At this moment the interest for authorities and professionals is to explore new ideas on:
I. Understanding what are the main social-economic-political features of our time, at European, regional and local level, and how they impact housing sector in general
II. What can Albania do from now on to provide housing for all, while avoiding new bubble of real estate and financing? How to match empty housing units at private sector, with housing needs of poor and homeless?
III. How formalization, urbanization and integration of informal housing is contributing to this panorama? How to make it really works in Albania? How to avoid formalization without integration?
IV. What’s is the role of planning? Can new typologies of architectural and housing design be developed to respond the real needs of social categories in Albania?
V. How to avoid segregation between center and periphery, social and private housing, informal and gated communities?
VI. What is the role of public authorities, private institutions, and academia-research? How to get on the board banking sector?
For all of this we want to open a debate by inviting participants to prepare papers and discuss qualitatively cases related to such issues with a focus on Albania and Albanian application. At the end we intend to provide a matrix of action plans, and tangible recommendations for Albanian authorities.
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