BALANCING TRADITION AND DEVELOPMENT? EARLY TRIALS OF A METHODOLOGY FOR STUDYING VERNACULAR ARCHITECTURE AND ITS TRANSFORMATIONS
Keywords: Vernacular Architecture, Social Transformations, Cooperation, Methodology, Cataloguing, Burkina Faso
Abstract. In the age of globalization, it becomes necessary to assess the possibilities for the conservation of the characteristic identity features of vernacular architectural heritage. The changes undergone in traditional dwellings appear to be on different scales in societies that are considered developed, and in those that are developing, while the idea of development itself can be the main precursor to change. A study underway aims to identify the nature of the transformations occurring both in traditional architecture and in the society that builds it through case studies and to determine the influence of the concept of “development” in these changes, spotting the potential role of cooperation in the conservation of vernacular architectural heritage and its capacity for sustainability. The analysis of the first case study, the village of Baasneere (Burkina Faso), has made it possible to implement a methodology based on the review of literature, quantitative and qualitative research techniques and the use of three types of cataloguing fiches on three aspects (urban, typological, constructive) of dwellings under study. Although it needs to be adapted to the specific characteristics of the new case studies, the methodology proposed has been proven valid in the study of vernacular settings and their transformations and is also expected to be of use in establishing comparisons between different contexts.