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Next Housing – Interpreting the home to come

Legacoop Abitanti presents research results on new fragile needs and demands

Italy, 24 June 2021 | Social, Economy, The future of the EU & Housing

On June 18th, the closing event of the series ‘Next Housing – that is to interpret (understand and declinate) the home that will come’, organised by Legacoop Abitanti in collaboration with Nomisma and with the support of COOPFOND - S.P.A., outlined the results of a research study dedicated to evidence, tools and housing supply models in light of current emerging fragile needs. Eva Sporer from Legacoop Abitanti has the details.

In short, what outlook does this leave us with?

55.8% of Italian households have at least one weakness of economic (28.3%), housing (11.7%) and social (43.5%) nature;

The cooperative supply model can provide an answer to the needs of a fragile target group demand through cooperation between inhabitants’ cooperatives and social cooperatives;

Evolving, responsible and responsive housing systems are part of a new proposal for the positioning of the cooperative world.

The complexity of housing and social needs requires a diversification of skills, forms of advanced intermediation, and a plurality of actors. To respond to the changing realities of the Italian home, new residents’ needs and vulnerabilities, the cooperative sector is dependent on the creation of synergies (both within the cooperative and private sector), the recognition of the social value of housing and supporting public policy. The precariousness of inhabitants across generations have not only risen due to the Covid-19 aftermath but also through a transition in lifestyles and household dynamics.

On one hand, the study describes the situation of the ‘new elderly’, and their right to a housing protagonism, that asks for answers to their changing housing desires, more recently defined by the wish to move from a metropolitan context to smaller urban centres. On the other hand, young people are disproportionally disadvantaged on the Italian housing market, and more exposed to temporary living solutions. Legacoop Abitanti is proposing the introduction of a national platform for affordable housing for young people, to facilitate mobility across regions.

The recently delivered National Recovery and Resilience Plan (PNRR) included among its mission objectives ‘the integration of national policies and investments to ensure an approach that concerns both the availability of more accessible public and private houses, and urban and territorial regeneration’. How can we be coherent with these challenges, that are centred around the theme of overcoming inequalities? The webinar opened up a discussion on the mix of leverage that the PNRR will be able to activate, together with the EU instrumentation and the National Sustainable Living Fund, and the role of inhabitants’ cooperatives as a 3rd sector within the affordable housing segment representing a multi-target focus, dedicated both to diverse resident populations and cross-sectoral partnership. The valorisation of housing as social infrastructure is the crucial basis to realise successful co-design between private and public partners corresponding to the PNRR objectives.

The Italian housing landscape is marked by untended territories and communities that are in need of social and cultural capital. As a link to the New European Bauhaus Initiative, that aims at rethinking our living spaces, the discussion refers to challenges at hand today as a momentum to make housing future-proof and to include those often left behind into the equation of housing innovation.

Watch the full recording and the presentation of the study here.


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