Universidad de Málaga, Escuela Técnica Superior de Arquitectura (SPAIN)
About this paper:
Appears in: INTED2012 Proceedings
Publication year: 2012
Pages: 2257-2262
ISBN: 978-84-615-5563-5
ISSN: 2340-1079
Conference name: 6th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 5-7 March, 2012
Location: Valencia, Spain
The presentation discusses an international cooperation project undertaken at the School of Architecture of the University of Málaga (Spain) titled: Landscape and Heritage in Southern Morocco. A proposal for the development of a responsible tourism model in the Mgoun Valley (High Atlas, Morocco). An interdisciplinary group of professors and students from the fields of Architectural History and Composition, Urbanism and Architectural Construction is promoting international cooperation and sustainable development with a focus on the preservation of vernacular architecture, considered both as an evolving material heritage and as an expression of immaterial values related to identity and cultural diversity.

Fieldwork was carried out in the Mgoun Valley (Southern slope of the High Atlas, Morocco) in the summer of 2011 in the context of an international workshop that dealt with two areas of interest:

1. Analysis of the transformation of the traditional habitat due to changes in the value systems and the way of life of present local populations, and how these transformations have varying impacts on the territory and on the quality of the landscape.
2. Evaluation of the implementation of touristic development models that have led to the appearance of new architectures of tourism involving the construction of new buildings as well as the reutilization of old ones.

Research was conducted at two scales. The first, of great social and cultural significance, has to do with structural changes in the landscape and vernacular architecture protection policies. The second focuses on specific actions at a local scale and tries to build up a set of good practices towards the definition of a sustainable touristic development model.

The teaching experience has allowed a group of professors and students to work according to the principles of participative collaboration, using the resources of new technologies and the social networks. Weekly meetings were held in order to share results and coordinate future activities. The research team was divided in four working groups: Territory and landscape, Habitat and its evolution, Architecture and heritage, and Social and cultural aspects. All activities were oriented towards participative learning and each member of the research team assumed well defined personal responsibilities in the context of the project. All members of the team achieved core competencies that allowed the implementation of a horizontal organizational structure. Student training was complemented with hands-on training in scholarly discussion and presentation of results.
Heritage, International cooperation, Landscape, Morocco, Participative collaboration, Responsible tourism, Sustainable habitat.