Ukraine’s situation unfolding today has drawn a line under all the Soviet and post-Soviet history and transferred our country into a new political and economic dimension, having severed all relations with Russia for a decade or even two. Such development was predictable, because mentally and intellectually we have been progressing towards Western civilization and this creates both a new reality for the whole Ukrainian society and a new context for contemporary Ukrainian architecture.
The future key mission of Ukrainian architecture is shaped by its clear social vector. The war has consolidated the people and changed their mentality. It has triggered the formation of the so-called self-organizing neuron network, which is a strong foundation for the emergence of a new civil society. Its members will become the new clients commissioning architecture of a completely new form and content.
The mission of the Kharkiv School of Architecture is to foster a community that can understand and create transformative changes of the living environment. We can surmise that in future a large proportion of the usual work of an architect will be performed by AI. This will leave more time for social moderation and more rigorous structuring of the work processes around projects. We can see that integration will become one of the major objectives.
The next important step will be to create local architecture and an innovative manufacturing community. New emerging technologies, companies and production facilities will bring together architects and Ukrainian manufacturers of construction materials to create a new local industry underpinned by cultural, climatic, geological and other crucial factors and it will reduce the consumption of imported materials.
There is a need to create a new model of architectural public life and new corresponding forms and typologies. Despite the shrinking urban population, there is a need to develop urban design expertise. We ought to develop the skills of ensuring safety and security from war risks and be ready to create a safe environment in currently ruined cities and villages. To this end, we have to cooperate and communicate with the global community of experts, while gaining our own experience and building a safe and secure Ukraine.
Professor Oleg Drozdov, co-founder of the Kharkiv School of Architecture