second Global Village Symposium is happening at a
moment when the "Data Superhighway" debate has made
its appearance in the Austrian media and the growth
potential of the telecommunication industry and the
information market is so widely recognized it even
becomes an issue of a G7 meeting. We are very happy
that our original effort to gather an expert
community around the questions of "Architecture and
City Planning in the Age of Telecommunication"
(1993) has led to the emergence of a forum that
discusses the manifold aspects of "Living Spaces and
Life's Quality in the Age of Telecommunication" - in
a City that has announced its readiness to
participate actively in the process of social
innovations enabled by technology.
Nevertheless, we should not forget that the
metaphors in which we talk about information
technology - "highway" and "village" - express our
desires for safety and clarity in a rapidly changing
world rather than an already existing concept of how
to use those technologies in the most meaningful
ways. This is why a gathering like "Global Village"
is so important: because it brings those concerned
about the potential of technology together to turn
their desires into creative energies - to find
within the existing contradictory reality the shape
and the building blocks of a sustainable future.
Therefore the agenda of the conference start we look
at the various players who push forward the
technological development promoting economic
globalization; they continue with a theoretical and
empirical look on the complex relations between
places and economic activities in the time of
distance - independent businesses; then focus on the
city, which becomes an increasingly important factor
in the age of globalization. Eventually, some
questions are raised about the basic changes in our
life that emerge when the dominant role of the
workplace is gone; and some visionary presentations
to make us sensitive for the new patterns of life
emerging in its place.