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Elisavet Hasa

MPhil work

Solidarity Support Infrastructures in Athens: Prototypical Designs & Protocological Systems

This thesis sets out a theory and the practice of ‘solidarity infrastructure’ as the multi-scalar fundamental component required to investigate new forms and frameworks of the design, surveying and delivery of architecture in the context of ‘social movements, solidarity economy and radical municipalities’ that want to revolutionise public procurement and welfare provision. Drawing on numerous social-solidarity projects that appeared during the financial crisis in Greece, it examines the relationship of such ad hoc initiatives with institutional forms of government and the occupation of publicly procured assets, and the mobilisation of municipal government bodies in Athens.

Alongside an in-depth discussion of how spatiality becomes complicit in the concept of institutionalisation of the activities of social movements, this research explores the engagement of numerous social movements in the emancipatory solidarity movement for care provision (healthcare, housing, education and food) in the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis, and their activism as part of the anti-austerity movement. The main finding of this thesis is that institutional structures require social movements to monitor the spatial manifestation of their activities through data quantification systems — such as templates, matrices, legal and administrative protocols and portals — but, most importantly, to produce design work and drawing packages. By charting an inclusive history of their activities, including political activism and spatial occupation, my work has as an aim to highlight new networks of exchange and expertise among social movements, along with the agency of social movements in design histories. 

Essentially, my thesis comprises a technical and historical account of care provision infrastructures that have emerged from the activities of social movements in the crisis-hit city of Athens during the last decade. I investigate through architecture, the system-building symptom of these initially small-scale independent infrastructures and their attempt to scale up the spatial, organisational and technical systems that originated in one place, growing in response to particular ecological, legal, political, and institutional techniques. My aim has been to explore how, as they grow into a networked infrastructure, they must move to other places with differing conditions, technical and technological standards, and legal regulations, elaborating the protocols of self-organisation and techniques of adaptation, semiotics and translation. In particular, this conception places a focus on practices of routinisation and extension, standardisation of space and architectural elements and, finally, of adaptation of protocological systems into a digital record.

Info

  • Elisavet Hasa
  • MPhil

    School

    School of Architecture

    Programme

    Architecture Research, 2016–

  • I am a multidisciplinary architect and researcher based in London. My PhD work focuses on the link between social movements, institutional ecologies, systems theory and protocols. My research investigates new forms and frameworks of the design, surveying and delivery of architecture in a context that allows for new routes and collaborations to be formed between institutional forms of government, ad hoc citizen initiatives and start-up inventions in the field of architecture and construction. 

    I’ve worked extensively in residential, cultural and education sectors in collaboration with established institutions and architectural practices, and my work has been presented and exhibited internationally. 

    In the spring of 2016, I participated in the 15th Venice Architectural Biennale with the collective project Co-hab Athens, which was exhibited at the Greek Pavilion. The project consisted of a proposal for a collective housing system and domesticity based on an alternative legal protocol and economic framework, aiming to deal with the housing crisis in Greece and make use of a repository of empty and inactivated building stock held by the government in Athens. As part of a team, I organised the workshop ‘Co-housing practices, inventing prototypes for Athens’ at the Greek pavilion and my essay ‘Out of Architecture? The role of the architect, the exodus and a multitude of outcomes’ was published the same year in the catalogue book of the Greek participation.

  • Degrees

  • Diploma in Architecture, School of Architecture, University of Patras, 2015
  • Exhibitions

  • #ThisIsACo-op, Greek Pavilion, 15th Venice Architectural Biennale, Italy, 2016.
  • Conferences

  • Conference ‘Structural Instabilities: History, Environment, and Risk in Architecture’. PennDesign. Philadelphia. Pennsylvania U.S. 2018.
  • Publications

  • ‘Out of Architecture? The exodus and a multitude of outcomes’. In: #ThisIsACo-op. Catalogue of the Greek participation #ThisIsACo-op in the 15th International Architecture Exhibition. 2016; ‘Architecture or Re-Claim? The Role of the Architect During the Portuguese 70s Movement for Social Housing, and the Social Movement for Commons in Greece since 2010’. In: Architektones Journal. October 2015.