A White Paper for the recovery.

We will remember this time as the post era. Today, every life and business model we know is being rethought, based on the post. No sector has come out unscathed, some more some less, all facing the bottomless crisis yet thinking about the recovery. And in the meantime Design Tech, a hub where professionals and enterprises work to invent a better future with the aid of design and technology, has created a design force to contemplate just how the future of the post might be. All areas of living and day-to-day life were examined, the city, living, work spaces, cultural spaces, the retail world, hospitality, healthcare, mobility, infrastructures. Industry experts were asked to imagine how these spaces could be reconfigured following the pandemic, a totally unexpected phenomenon that dramatically highlighted the critical downfalls of traditional models, but which also accelerated the process of change.

Buildings increasingly less constructed, and more assembled.

What this experience taught us is that urban spaces and buildings are not eternal and real estate needs to take this into account, rethinking the life cycle of buildings and the possibility to reconfigure them at low cost. One could almost imagine less constructed and more assembled buildings by assuming the perspective of a circular economy where disposal is reduced to a minimum in favour of the virtuous recycling of matter. It will be important to privilege a biophilic design not so much to “increase their aesthetic appeal through inserting trees and shrubs” but to highlight “humanity’s place in nature and the natural world’s place in human society”. (S. R. Kellert and J. H. Heerwagen). Another difficult challenge to be addressed is that of designing eco-sustainable buildings, which is very different to transforming them post-construction into energy-saving buildings by installing extremely expensive and essentially unsustainable systems, but rather involves thinking of passive buildings right from the design phase, just as we did in the past.

Contactless and wireless: technologies that reduce the risk perception

A technical but at the same time hygienic approach that will have a positive psychological effect on risk perception. It is here that technology plays a very important role, entirely centred on contactless, wireless, voice control and facial recognition systems to avoid contact with potentially contaminated surfaces.

A new way of using interstitial spaces

Homebound. The area hardest hit in terms of concept was the residential sector. During the lockdown, the value of properties with a terrace or garden increased by 8% (source Pininfarina Architecture – DesignTech for future), a figure destined to rise, underlining the importance of all that associated with the concept of freedom, which we may, for mysterious reasons, be denied. Living therefore needs to be thought of as an extroverted system with the possibility for new uses of interstitial spaces: balconies, loggias, pilotis, stairways, courtyards, flat roofs.

Space will by phygital.

As far as the workplace is concerned, Covid-19 has accelerated the smart working phenomena already under way, throwing the pre-Covid co-working trend into crisis. This is because shared space is perceived as the least safe space, with more possibilities for contamination and the need for repeated sanitisation. People are always looking for greater privacy, which they psychologically associate with a safe place.

But while smart working supported by digital technology worked without a hitch in certain areas, in other, less technologically developed areas with poor connections, all its limitations were revealed. 

The aim is therefore to invest in technological research and development so as to create phygital (physical + digital) spaces in which to communicate with objects thanks to IoT.

Privacy: the new luxury of hospitality.

The search for privacy spreads to the hospitality industry too, where the new luxury will be greater attention afforded to clients, an exclusivity in the sense of anticipating guests’ desires.