The paper introduces further steps of a research started by authors in the recent years, as part of a widest international research network, which focus on the forms of shared life and on the recurrent phenomena of abandonment of rural settlements. The research aims to understand how ancient buildings in rural areas, which originally housed functions for agricultural production, defense from external hazards, have produced a space of collective and shared life. Once abandoned and dismissed their original functions these historical typologies could be regenerated in the present days, keeping their sense of community hosting again shared functions and becoming occasions of transformation of the built environment in order to contrast the abandonment of rural areas, with particular reference to the realities of Europe, China and Central America. These geographical contexts are rich in buildings, with traditional typologies, which based their organization on sharing of spaces and functions. These buildings, often in a state of complete abandon, are now the subjects of numerous interventions of regeneration, many of which are gained great attention by the international contemporary debate. Among these, ten projects have been analyzed with a predominantly anthological method, with semantic analysis supports and analysis of drawings and pictures that have revealed the distribution and functional characteristics of each individual project (in the past and nowadays). Then, the research has compared the studied projects by extrapolating the common characteristics that indicate an attitude of sustainability, including: the regeneration of the existing; the limitation of land use and the creation of communitarian environments (not necessarily re-proposing the historical ones).
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