Ecuador Perspectives of the Past, Present and Future: A Multi-Criteria Approach to Social Evolution



Series: Cultural Studies in the Third Millennium
BISAC: SOC002010

Ecuador is a diverse and multicultural country which has resisted the historical processes of homogenization and globalization. In it different peoples and ancestral nationalities coexist, as well as the heirs of the colonial process, appearing as strong contrasts in customs, languages and cultural expressions, arising syncretism, miscegenation and fusion. There is a fascinating natural diversity, which, despite being contained in a small fragment of world territory, gives an immeasurable environmental value to the country, America, and the world.

However, this cultural and environmental wealth is sometimes overshadowed by phenomena of exclusion, by social gaps, by gender inequality and by environmental degradation. These realities, which affect all of Latin America, have vernacular peculiarities, intrinsic to Ecuador as a country. Within this context, this publication aims to generate an investigative space from different perspectives and disciplines, contributing to the construction of a more inclusive and sustainable Ecuador. Therefore, the philosophy and motivation in which the editorial spirit is inscribed is focused through the concepts of identity, culture, humanism, the environment and interculturality.

This work also presents the main results of research carried out by various universities in Ecuador, highlighting the contribution of the research project promoted by the postgraduate program of the Catholic University of Cuenca called “Sustainable Architecture Through Adequate Recycling of Plastic,” which has allowed the correct articulation of the themes exposed in this work.

We hope that this book, beyond becoming a useful instrument in academia and within research, may have an expansive and positive effect on the inhabitants of Ecuador, especially those most disadvantaged.

Table of Contents



Chapter 1. Interior Solutions in Minimal Low-Income Homes
(Jonnathan Zhindón-Duarte, Diana Mejía-Coronel – Professor of Interior Design Career, Faculty of Arts, University of Cuenca, et al.)

Chapter 2. Urban Planning for the Sustainable Development of Social Interest Housing
(Julio Pintado-Farfán, Pedro Angumba-Aguilar – Professor at the Catholic University of Cuenca, Cuenca, Ecuador, et al.)

Chapter 3. Environmental and Energy Aspects of Social Housing
(Manuel Alvarez-Vera, Juan-Carlos Cobos-Torres, Federico Córdova-Gonzalez, Darío Cobos-Torres – Catholic University of Cuenca, Cuenca, Ecuador, et al.)

Chapter 4. Prototype of Single-Family Sustainable Social Housing with Recyclable Materials
(Diego Morales-Jadán, Marcela Sánchez-Sarmiento, Joel Fuertes-Caguana – Postgraduate Headquarters Programs-Electrical Engineering Career, Cuenca-Ecuador, et al.)

Chapter 5. Analysis of the Electrical and Lighting System in “Social Interest” Housing
(Daniel Icaza, Carlos Flores Vazques, Santiago Pulla – Academic Unit of Engineering, Industry and Construction, Catholic University of Cuenca, et al.)

Chapter 6. An Assessment on Energy Policies and Challenges to Promote Solar PV in South America: The Ecuadorian Case
(Marcos Ponce-Jara, Manuel Pelaez-Samaniego, Milton Moreano-Alvarado, Carlos Velásquez-Figueroa, M.Castro – Faculty of Engineering, Universidad Laica Eloy Alfaro de Manabí (ULEAM), Manta, Ecuador, et al.)

Chapter 7. Protected Horticulture of Ecuador: Past, Present and Future Perspectives
(Celia Jiménez-Lao, Pedro García-Caparrós, María Teresa Lao, Alfonso Llanderal and John Franco-Rodríguez – Agronomy Department, University of Almeria, Almería, Spain, et al.)

Chapter 8. The Evolution of Gender Roles in Rural Ecuador: The Case of the Cacao Value Chain
(Pilar Useche, PhD and Trent Blare, PhD – Tropical Research and Education Center, University of Florida, Homestead, FL, US)



“I applaud this document that proposes strategies for social development to guarantee equity, multicultural and sustainable Ecuador, starting from society. The research, studies and retrospective, present and prospective analysis, from different perspectives and disciplines, with scientific methodology, provides among the results the knowledge of housing programs and their influence on the urban process, in a period that has marked the current problems of our cities, due to the acceptance of considering resources and the environment as infinite and unalterable at the time, in the face of current environmental, climate change and social problems, what has been done is an excellent starting point, with public policies, which go from urban and regional growth plans and the financing for it, compared to other countries, with the same historical conditions, but different socio-cultural conditions. The new reality requires strategies to address what we have and how the new should be, so as not to fall into the same problems that lead us to risks such as those indicated, plus ungovernability, which in the last two years there have been demonstrations with socioeconomic base in several countries of the region, the case of Ecuador can provide solutions to problems that affect all of Latin America and the Caribbean, and a methodology for the analysis and study of any case in the world.” – Ing.  David Morillón Gálvez, PhD, Researcher and Coordinator of the Mechanics and Energy Area of the Engineering Institute of the UNAM, Mexico

” This book analyzes issues related to low-income housing and rurality in Ecuador. Using scientific research, the different authors propose, in each chapter of the book, an analysis of different latent problems to propose solutions that are aimed at improving the social situation of the neediest families and citizens. The topics addressed begin with the study of interior solutions in six low-income homes, through the analysis and active participation of their owners in the town of Sayausí. The second chapter deals with the incidence of social interest housing plans in the city of Cuenca, to determine the locations that are suitable for the future and that enable orderly planning of the growth of the city. The following topic analyzes the environmental and energy aspects of social housing, to determine its related problems and propose the use of renewable energy and adequate waste disposal. The following research presents a prototype of social housing based on the sustainability and recycling of materials, which begins with the definition of the dosages to manufacture plastic blocks, with which a house is built within the concepts of the circular economy. In the analysis of the energy issue related to affordable housing, it is presented in two chapters. The Quito chapter analyzes the electrical and lighting systems used in this type of housing, going through a historical study of the evolution of these systems in the city of Cuenca, to determine their performance and technological future. The sixth chapter, on the same subject, after an evaluation of the state of photovoltaic solar energy, it is determined that energy policies are insipient for the development of these technologies in Ecuador. Finally, in the final two chapters, the issue of rural areas in Ecuador is addressed. An investigation is presented that tries to determine the degree of agricultural activity, land tenure, technological development, among other aspects, to establish the main challenges and prospects for rural areas. The final chapter presents an investigation carried out in the homes of small cocoa producers on the Ecuadorian coast, with the objective of analyzing the evolution and change of gender roles in the last 50 years in rural areas dedicated to the production of cocoa. The contents and the rigor of the execution of the investigations presented give an account of the relevance of each chapter of this book, which provides a series of solutions that are pertinent to the problem that is related to the housing issues of interest social and rural in Ecuador.” – Arq.  Juan Felipe Quesada Molina PhD, Researcher and Director of the Postgraduate Center of the Faculty of Architecture and Urbanism of the University of Cuenca, Ecuador.

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