- Dr hab. Katarzyna Szczepańska-Woszczyna, prof. WSB University – Management Committee Member COST Action no. CA18137 titled European Middle Class Mass Housing.
The main challenge of this Cost Action is to create a transnational network that gathers European researchers carrying studies on Middle-Class Mass Housing (MCMH) built in Europe since the 1950s. This network will allow the development new scientific approaches by discussing, testing and assessing case studies and their different methodologies and perspectives. MCMH has been generally underestimated in urban and architectural studies and there is still a lack of comparative analysis and global perspectives. The number of transnational publications and scientific meetings has also been scarce. By crossing different approaches focus on Architecture, Urbanism, Planning, Public Policies, History, Sociology new concepts and methodologies will arise. Therefore, the Action aims to produce a wider understanding of MCMH sprawl, deepening on-going researches and focussing on the existing case studies. The current methodologies, surveys, catalogue and contextualization allow an initial mapping of relevant case studies, their diverse degrees of resilience and how they have been adapted to current (urban and social) conditions. It is intended to develop the knowledge of the interaction between spatial forms, behaviours and satisfaction and to combine methodologies of architectural and social analyses. The Action will be developed by three Working Groups, coordinated by a Core Group: Documenting the MCMH; Development of a specific set of (new) concepts for MCMH analyses; Leverage contemporary architecture interventions and Public Policies. In the Action will be involved researchers related to Mass Housing, MCMH Architecture and Urbanism, Planning and Public Policies, Sociological studies, Architecture History and Modern Heritage.
- Dr Paulina Polko, Management Committee Member, COST Action no. CA18204 Dynamics of placemaking and digitalization in Europe’s cities
This Action will investigate how placemaking activities, like public art, civil urban design, local knowledge production re-shape and reinvent public space, and improve citizens’ involvement in urban planning and urban design. Placemaking implies the multiplication and fragmentation of agents shaping the public realm. The Action aims to empower citizens to contribute with citizen`s knowledge, digitization and placemaking to diverse ways of interpreting local identities in European cities. The added value of digitization – understood here basically as the ongoing process of converting any kind of data from an analog into a digital format – (Jannidis/Kohle/Rehbein (2018:179) will be analyzed in the ways in which it impacts urban placemaking processes of local communities. Studying urban placemaking and digital practices of various local communities throughout Europe´s cities, this Action will understand and analyze,
- The impact of digitization on the common placemaking practices of urban local communities,
- The changing processes of citizen´s local knowledge production of placemaking,
- The influence of digitization on the governmentality of the local neighborhoods and co-creation of public space by various societal actors.
Drawing on recent theoretical insights that point to the importance of placemaking, widening citizen´s knowledge and wider application of digitization and digital communication, the Action seeks to develop new methods for studying and comparing effects of disseminating local urban knowledge beyond cultural and societal borders. By doing so, it develops European urban research both theoretically and methodologically finding ways of channeling the results into the wider urban planning and governance processes.
- Dr Joanna Kurowska-Pysz – Management Committee Member, COST Action no. CA18114 titled European Non-Territorial Autonomy Network
ENTAN – the European Non-Territorial Autonomy Network is a COST Action aimed at examining the concept of non-territorial autonomy (NTA), from both a comparative and comprehensive perspective. ENTAN particularly focuses on NTA arrangements for reducing inter-ethnic tensions within a state and on the accommodation of the needs of different communities while preventing calls to separate statehood. The Action tackles recent developments in the theories and practices of cultural diversity; minority rights (including linguistic and educational rights); state functions and sovereignty; conflict resolution through policy arrangements; policy making and inclusiveness; self-governance and autonomy. The main objective is to investigate the existing NTA mechanisms and policies and to develop new modalities for the accommodation of differences in the context of growing challenges stemming from globalisation, regionalisation and European supranational integration. Along with issues related to the culture and education of diverse groups within a nation state, and legal arrangements for the recognition and practice of separate identities, the Action focuses on political strategies and policies that have the potential to increase the autonomy of stateless nations and to empower cultural, ethnic and religious communities. The network is built upon agreed research activities, which include interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary group work, the training and empowerment of young researchers, academic conferences and publications, and the dissemination of results to policy makers, civil society organisations and communities.
- Dr Łukasz Wróblewski – Management Committee Member, COST Action no. CA18126 titled Writing Urban Places. New Narratives of the European City.
Writing Urban Places proposes an innovative investigation and implementation of a process for developing human understanding of communities, their society, and their situatedness, by narrative methods. It particularly focuses on the potential of narrative methods for urban development in European medium-sized cities.
By recognising the value of local urban narratives -stories rich in information regarding citizens socio-spatial practices, perceptions and expectations-, the Action aims to articulate a set of concrete literary devices within a host of spatial disciplines; bringing together scientific research in the fields of literary studies, urban planning and architecture; and positioning this knowledge vis-à-vis progressive redevelopment policies carried out in medium-sized cities in Europe.
The Action defines three thematic targets it wants to explore theoretically as well as in case studies. 1) meaningfulness: offering local communities and professionals the ability to improve their understanding of their built environment; 2). appropriation: empowering communities by improving their ability to project their feelings on their built environment. 3). integration: offering concrete tools and methods for the construction of common grounds among communities, based on relations of meaningfulness and appropriation of their built environment.
Based on a robust investigative tradition in these fields, the COST Action brings together solid experience in linking the literary and the built and offers the necessary scientific background for the assessment of the contemporary city, while cherishing and enhancing the specificity of local urban cultures in the European context.
- Dr Michał Szyszka – Management Committee Member, COST Action no. CA18136 titled European Forum for Advanced Practices.
Initially, the European Forum for Advanced Practices is an inclusive research network originating from universities, NGOs and community-based organisations, independent research entities, museums, and a wide range of arts academies. EFAP’s broad goal is to establish a dialog across the boundaries that often separate these contexts and to promote exchange with a focus on emergent forms of artistic- and practice-based research.
EFAP proposes an open notion of Advanced Practices that deliberately combine methods and practices from numerous disciplines. The goal of EFAPis to respond to two sets of urgencies:
- Ever-more complex societal challenges across Europe demand new forms of knowledge exchange and transfer, as new research forms gain ground and new modes of research output become increasingly prominent.
- This requires multidisciplinary and comprehensive methods to capture and assess their quality and impact in advance rather than retrospectively.
The initial proposers of EFAP have actively shaped contemporary research in the fields of visual art, art history, philosophy, music, theatre, dance and performance studies, architecture, design, and engineering.
EFAP’s mission is to broaden and deepen the range of settings, forms, and fields that can be identified or understood in terms of Advanced Practices.
- Dr inż. Wojciech Gamon – Management Committee Substitute Member, COST Action no. CA18120 titled Reliable roadmap for certification of bonded primary structures.
With the increasing pressure to meet unprecedented levels of eco-efficiency, aircraft industry aims for superlight structures and towards this aim, composites are replacing the conventional Aluminium.The same trend is being followed by civil, automotive, wind energy, naval and offshore industry, in which the combination (or replacement) of steel with composites can increase the strength-to-weight ratio. However, the joining design is not following this transition. Currently, composites are being assembled using fasteners. This represents a huge weight penalty for composites, since holes cut through the load carrying fibres and destroy the load path. Adhesive bonding is the most promising joining technology in terms of weight and performance. However, its lack of acceptance is limiting its application to secondary structures, whose failure is not detrimental for the structural safety. In primary (critical-load-bearing) structures, fasteners are always included along bondlines, as “back-up” in case the bond fails. The main reasons for this lack of acceptance are the limited knowledge of their key manufacturing parameters, non-destructive inspection techniques, damage tolerance methodology and reliable diagnosis and prognosis of their structural integrity. The Action aims to deliver a reliable roadmap for enabling certification of primary bonded composite structures. Despite the motivation being aircraft structures, which is believed to have the most demanding certification, it will directly involve other application fields in which similar needs are required. This Action will tackle the scientific challenges in the different stages of the life-cycle of a bonded structure through the synergy of multi-disciplinary fields and knowledge transfer.
- Dr Karol Kujawa – Management Committee Member, COST Action CA18129 – Islamic Legacy: Narratives East, West, South, North of the Mediterranean (1350-1750)
The purpose of the Action is to provide a transnational and interdisciplinary approach capable of overcoming the segmentation that currently characterizes the study of relations between Christianity and Islam in late medieval and early modern Europe and the Mediterranean. Over the last thirty years, some separate geographic and academic areas have been defined in this research field: the Iberian Peninsula, Italy, Central Europe and the Balkans, and Greece and the different islands of the Mediterranean. These different geographical areas have been analysed in isolation and have been further disjointed in a scientific context defined by the separation of disciplines and chronologies. The intention of the Action is to mitigate this academic distortion by creating a common space for scientific exchange and reflection. This space will involve institutions from 26 different European and Mediterranean countries as well as 59 senior and junior researchers coming from different disciplines (history, history of art, philology, anthropology, social sciences, history of the science, politics, etc.). The creation of this network will help to provide a comprehensive understanding of past relations between Christianity and Islam in the European context through the addressing of three main research problems: otherness, migration and borders. Beyond the strictly academic realm, the Action also aims to revive diversity and Euro-Mediterranean relations in education, at a moment when Europe is at a cultural and political crossroads.
- Dr hab. Robert Socha – Substitute Management Committee Member, COST Action nr CA18236 Multi-disciplinary innovation for social change
In an increasingly complex and rapidly changing world, traditional disciplinary approaches to the framing and resolution of social and economic problems deliver ever diminishing returns. Discussions abound, therefore, about how best to educate and prepare graduates for the fresh challenges of the 21st century.
Knowledge Alliances between Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) and enterprises which aim to foster innovation, entrepreneurship, creativity, employability, knowledge exchange and/or multidisciplinary teaching and learning are therefore becoming increasingly necessary and relevant. The challenge is to determine what we should teach in the future and how it should be taught. The changing nature of contemporary society highlights that social issues are often highly complex and multifaceted.
The aim of this Action is to demonstrate, through the adoption of Multi-Disciplinary Innovation(MDI) methods, how we can respond to social problems with a design-led approach which has a problem-oriented ethos, supporting positive social change and the development of international public policy discourse. It will be achieved through the establishment of a Pan- European Public Sector Innovation (ePSI) lab.
- Dr Karol Kujawa – Substitute Management Committee Member, COST Action no. CA18215 – China in Europe Research Network
In spite of a recent slowdown foreign direct investment from rising China in to Europe has been growing exponentially over the past decade. It ranges from manufacturing, energy, utilities and transport, to financial services, real estate and sports and has been expanding from acquisitions of European firms to greenfield and portfolio investment.The perceived challenges posed by these investments has led to increasing political and media attention, including calls for EU vetting and regulation of acquisitions.
Academic research on the phenomenon is however lagging behind these developments. Existing studies moreover tend to have a mono-disciplinary, national or sectoral focus. Over-arching conceptions of the interconnections between investments in multiple sectors and the often cross-European nature and intent of Chinese investments, as well as their (geo)political implications, is almost entirely absent. This does not augur well for the formulation of appropriate policy responses direly needed to engage constructively with rising China.
In the light of these scientific gaps and policy needs and by bringing together the leading and pioneering researchers from across Europe and beyond (e.g. China, USA), the aim of this Action is to:(a) pool current and stimulate further research on China’s deepening economic engagements with Europe (b) develop an interdisciplinary, holistic, cross-sectoral and pan-European understanding of the variegated impacts and strategies associated with these engagements; (c) comprehend the likely political and geo-political consequences of these; and (d) generate input on the policy implications of these issues involving relevant agencies from the EU, member countries, business, trade unions and other interested parties.
- Mgr Ewelina Widerska – Substitute Management Committee Member, COST Action no. CA18214 The geography of New Working Spaces and the impact on the periphery
The aim of the COST Action is threefold. First, it aims to share the first outcomes of some funded international research projects on the phenomenon of new workplaces, such as Coworking Spaces and Maker Spaces, in order to: (i) identify the typologies (Taxonomy) of such emerging workplaces, and (ii) reveal their spatial distribution, and to explain their location patterns.
Secondly, through the comparison and dissemination of the first results of these international research activities, the Action aims at identifying, measuring and evaluating the (direct and indirect) effects of these new working spaces (Atlas) in order to understand whether and how they have promoted – with or without the help of public subsidies and planning measures : (a) regional competitiveness, economic performance and resilience; (b) entrepreneurial milieu; (c) knowledge creation within regional innovation system, retaining knowledge workers and the creative class; (d) social inclusion and spatial regeneration of peripheral areas.
The third aim is to collect, discuss and develop guidelines for tailored policy and planning measures (Tool Box) to foster the positive effects of new workplaces through the promotion of agreements and cooperation with local, regional and/or national public administrations/stakeholders, as well as to try to mitigate their negative effects on the neighbourhoods (i.e. parking shortages, noise, or increasing land rent).
- mgr Sebastian Kwasniewski – Substitute Management Committee Member, COST Action no CA18231 – Multi3Generation: Multi-task, Multilingual, Multi-modal Language Generation
Language generation (LG) is a crucial technology if machines are to communicate with humans seamlessly using human natural language. A great number of different tasks within Natural Language Processing (NLP) are language generation tasks, and being able to effectively perform these tasks implies (1) that machines are equipped with world knowledge that can require multi-modal processing and reasoning (e.g. textual, visual and auditory inputs, or sensory data streams), and (2) the study of strong, novel Machine Learning (ML) methods (e.g. structured prediction, generative models), since virtually all state-of-the-art NLP models are learned from data. Moreover, human languages can differ wildly in their surface realisation (i.e. scripts) as well as their internal structure (i.e. grammar), which suggests that multilinguality is a central goal if machines are to perform seamless language generation. Language generation technologies would greatly benefit both public and private services offered to EU citizens in a multilingual Europe, and have strong economic and societal impacts.