In September 2020, the President of the European Commission announced the launch of the New European Bauhaus (NEB) in her State of the Union address. The initiative was subsequently embedded in the Renovation Wave strategy, where it is presented as “an interdisciplinary project that will create experimental spaces where art, culture, science and technology can mingle, imagine, test and demonstrate new solutions.2” On multiple occasions the NEB was presented as the “soul” of the Green Deal and a way to bring its aspirations closer to citizens.
Elevating the complexity of our natural and built habitat to an unprecedented political level, the NEB has invited us, collectively, to reimagine our living spaces in order to make them more sustainable, inclusive and beautiful. It also brought a challenge for the architectural profession, effectively to alert, convince and potentially empower civil society to engage in the design of their living spaces.
The ACE has embraced the initiative from the beginning, helping to shape and promote the NEB by engaging with the European Commission’s services, the European Parliament and with the NEB community across Europe. As part of the EU-funded NEBULA project, the ACE has contributed to the development of a Handbook that explains the concepts underlying the NEB initiative, (NEB Labs, NEB Dashboard, NEB Compass, etc.) and provides a number of project examples, conceived in response to the three NEB core values.
This manifesto highlights the key issues that the NEB brings to the fore explaining the role of architecture therein and calls on architects to take their place in the NEB movement.