Architectural Congresses of the International Union of Architects

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Architectural Congresses of the International Union of Architects


(IUA). Sessions have been held once every two years (since 1969, once every three years) to discuss current problems of architecture and urban construction, as well as to exchange experience. In addition to the official representatives (members of the executive committee and the assemblies of the International Union of Architects) anyone who wishes may take part in the work of the congresses (provided that he fulfills specified financial obligations). The themes of the congresses are proposed by the countries that organize the congresses, and they are approved by the executive committee of the IUA. Resolutions passed by the congresses have the character of recommendations.

The first congress of the IUA was held in 1948 in Lausanne, Switzerland (400 delegates from 43 countries). At this congress the IUA was officially established, the executive committee was elected, and the charter of the union was ratified.

The second congress of the IUA (1951, Rabat, Morocco) discussed the most important problems of urban construction as well as the planning of public buildings and structures.

The third congress of the IUA (1953, Lisbon) was entitled Architecture at the Crossroads and was devoted to an analysis of the many varied trends in architecture at the beginning of the 1950’s.

The fourth congress of the IUA (1955, The Hague) was called Architecture and the Growth of Housing: 1945–55. It discussed problems in the typology of housing and of the parts of buildings (making planning more rational; standardizing parts of buildings; establishing a single, international module; unifying construction details) with the aim of joint building activity by enterprises from various countries.

The fifth congress of the IUA (1958, Moscow, 1,500 delegates from 51 countries) was devoted to the problems of worldwide urban construction (Construction and Reconstruction of Cities: 1945–57). They discussed the regulation of growth, the reconstruction of old cities and the construction of new ones, city traffic and transport, industrialization and economics, as well as aesthetic problems of cities.

The sixth congress of the IUA (1961, London) was entitled New Technology, New Materials, and Their Effect on Architecture. It was devoted to problems of industrializing construction.

The seventh congress of the IUA (1963, Havana, 80 countries participating) was conducted under the title Architecture in Countries Which Have Begun Developing Independently. The problems discussed related to regional planning, housing construction, and the development of building techniques. The seventh congress also underscored the need for training national cadres, communicating technical information, and exchanging students in order to render aid to developing countries. It was recommended that such countries set up their own construction bases as well as building materials industries.

The eighth congress of the IUA (1965, Paris, 2,000 delegates from 65 countries), entitled The Training of Architects, was devoted to problems of architectural education. The congress adopted recommendations to train architects to have a broad outlook and a profound knowledge of the humanities, the necessary natural sciences, and technology. Soviet architectural schools and their methods of teaching received high praise.

The ninth congress of the IUA (1967, Prague, 1,500 delegates from 70 countries) was called Architecture and the Environment in Which Man Lives. Posed here were problems of raising the level of architecture and urban construction in order to improve the environment in which man lives, carefully preserving valuable historical monuments, preventing unjustifiable interference with the natural environment, and ensuring the effective protection of nature.

The tenth congress of the IUA (1969, Buenos Aires, 3,000 delegates from 60 countries) had the title Architecture as a Social Factor: The Social Nature of Housing. Topics considered were the interrelationship between apartment houses and the surrounding area and city, legal and economic aspects of planning and building apartment houses, the methodology of planning and constructing housing, and the problems of seeking the best types of houses and apartments and their planning and construction systems. The resolutions adopted contained recommendations about changing the living conditions in capitalist countries and the need for nationalizing urban land property, which is necessary to resolve a major social problem—ensuring housing for the working people.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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