Cost Action 18110 – Underground Built Heritage as catalyser for Community Valorisation

About Underground4Value

Promoting Underground Built Heritage as a valuable resource to celebrate and preserve and, when sustainable, to re-use and valorise, realising its full potential to support local communities’ development

Underground4Value establishes and implements an expert network, for promoting balanced and sustainable approaches to preserve the Underground Built Heritage (UBH) and, at the same time, realise the potential of underground space in urban and rural areas for regeneration policies.

The experts are organised in five working groups: 1. UBH Knowledge Base Development; 2. UBH conservation and monitoring; 3: UBH reuse and valorisation strategies; 4. UBH planning approaches; 5. Dissemination and exploitation strategies.

Underground4Value sets up and coordinates small teams of participants for performing every year four Short Term Scientific Missions (STSM) in selected UBH case studies.  For each, local teams investigate on field best-practices and report on governance mechanisms, planning framework, stakeholders’ involvement management, financing mechanisms, technical needs, and their direct impacts on the underground built environment preservation, environment, society and economy, as well as potential negative externalities (i.e. ‘gentrification’, hard-branding, mass tourism, recreational villages, underground degradation…). Underground4Value STSMs stimulate interaction with local communities, dissemination of innovative thinking and support them to explore alternative social trajectories, by establishing living labs.

Collected information is the basis for developing new research and training, open and accessible to all parties interested in the underground regeneration, and it provides knowledge on main technical and organisational barriers to the underground regeneration and correlated solutions.

Uderground4value aims at guaranteeing continuity of use and significance to the underground historic fabric, revitalisation of the public realm and skills development for townspeople. It disseminates knowledge on underground culture and assist local communities’ decision-making with adequate cultural, scientific and technical knowledge of the underground built environment from many different aspects (i.e. archaeology, geotechnics, history, urban planning, cultural anthropology, economics, architecture, cultural tourism). Finally, it aims at contributing to other EU programmes implementation.

COST (European Cooperation in Science and Technology) is a pan-European intergovernmental framework. Its mission is to enable break-through scientific and technological developments leading to new concepts and products and thereby contribute to strengthening Europe’s research and innovation capacities. It allows researchers, engineers and scholars to jointly develop their own ideas and take new initiatives across all fields of science and technology, while promoting multi- and interdisciplinary approaches. COST aims at fostering a better integration of less research-intensive countries to the knowledge hubs of the European Research Area. The COST Association, an International not-for-profit Association under Belgian Law, integrates all management, governing and administrative functions necessary for the operation of the framework. The COST Association has currently 39 Member Countries.

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