Global challenges

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Global Challenges

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The global challenges

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Fast urbanization around the globe is challenging the construction sector at both the global and local scale. Today, buildings and constructions account for 32% of the global energy expenditure and are responsible for 19% of the global greenhouse gas emissions. We are all aware that the situation will worsen significantly in the next decades if we carry on current building practices in our efforts to provide sufficient settlement to the burgeoning population.While the danger of urbanization is a reality, constructions have enormous potentials – largely unrealized by the society – at the local and global level. From our perspective buildings are source of challenge and solution at the same time. Indeed, they impact with so many critical areas which are identified by the United Nations as Sustainable Development Goals (among them Climate Action, Infrastructures, Sustainable cities …). The history of architecture has shown that construction materials evolve with the society. We have been developing new technologies for thousands of years and we will continue adapting to new resources and to a new digital world. However we will do it, will determine our progress toward sustainable development.

Economic Challenges

  • Corruption in construction industry

  • Affordable sustainable construction

  • Unequal distribution of natural resources between countries

  • Slow implementation of new technologies and innovation in construction industry

 

Social Challenges

  • Negative mindset on low-carbon, local construction materials or practices: vernacular building is seen as buildings for ‘poor’ and new low-cost housing as of poor quality

  • Lack of interdisciplinary connections between actors which limits knowledge transfer and development of efficient solutions

  • Lack of awareness on corruption and the misuse of available resources at the society level

  • Poverty or unemployment and builders with poor and limited skills

  • Artisan skills poor or limited

  • Recognition of engineers: avoid exclusion of key engineers and other relevant specialists during feasibility studies and issuing of contracts

  • Misalignment of curricula with the application on the ground

 

 

Environmental Challenges

  • GHG emissions from construction

  • Importation of materials resulting in inefficient application

  • Allocation of financial resources

  • Lack of exploitation of locally available and sustainable materials

  • Modernization of construction with the use of new technologies

  • Inadequate international standard to many local contexts

  • Tendency of construction sector to promote mainstream solutions

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