Expo Blog

The Expo Blog is a space for posts on the history, themes, legacies and experience of Expos. It includes articles from the BIE and external contributors.

 

Atomium: The Beginning of the Nuclear era

Atomium: The Beginning of the Nuclear era

Nuclear energy is one of the largest contributors to electricity production across the world, and its importance is not set to diminish in the near future, despite the controversy that has always surrounded it.

The glorious nuclear future envisioned in the mid-20th century, with bountiful, cheap and safe energy supplies, is not exactly the reality of today. However, humanity’s continuous need for safe and affordable energy means that the search to unlock the power of the atom remains relevant to this day.

Read More

From dream to reality: Seville celebrates 25 years of Expo 1992

From dream to reality: Seville celebrates 25 years of Expo 1992

A quarter of a century after Seville welcomed the world for World Expo 1992, the Andalusian capital is gearing up to celebrate the anniversary of the event that was a watershed moment in the history of the city, the region and the country. With the support of Mayor Juan Espada, a 25th anniversary commission will, in partnership with Legado Expo Sevilla, organise over 30 activities between April and October 2017 to commemorate the Expo and to actively promote its legacy.

Marking the arrival of Spain as a democratic, European and proudly diverse country, Expo 1992 gathered 108 countries and international organisations, and received 42 million visits, higher than Spain’s population at the time. Organised under the theme “The Age of Discovery”, the Expo celebrated 500 years of Christopher Columbus’ famed departure from the city prior to the European discovery of the Americas. Seville has good reason to celebrate Expo 1992, an event that modernised the city, brought worldwide attention to Andalusia, and was a catalyst for the development of La Cartuja and the wider region.

Read More

Energy-thirsty: the Water-Energy Nexus at Expo 1939 Liège

Energy-thirsty: the Water-Energy Nexus at Expo 1939 Liège

The water-energy “nexus” – the intricate connection and special relationship between water and energy – has long been at the heart of humanity’s efforts to harness and manage energy for its own uses.

The importance of this nexus was already evident in 1939, when the Belgian city of Liège hosted a Specialised Expo under the theme “Water Management”, celebrating the completion of the Albert Canal.

Read More

Electricity and Domestic Bliss at Expo 1939 New York

Electricity and Domestic Bliss at Expo 1939 New York

Organised under the theme “World of Tomorrow”, Expo 1939 in New York celebrated the “Dawn of a New Day”, which was partly made possible by the electrification of the country. Increased access to safe and reliable energy in the first part of the 20th century lead to a wave of optimism and hope for a future shaped by technological prowess and societal changes.

In 1900, only around 2% of homes in the United States were electrified, but by 1939, this proportion had increased dramatically to approximately 70%.

Read More

The House of Tomorrow: Pioneering Sustainable Design

The House of Tomorrow: Pioneering Sustainable Design

Sustainable architecture and the passive house concept are undoubtedly subjects of priority among urban planners and architects in the 21st century. But long before concerns about reducing emissions and minimising energy use, one of the first concept homes integrating sustainable design was showcased at Expo 1933 in Chicago.

Built in the backdrop of the Great Depression, the House of Tomorrow, designed by American modernist architect, George Fred Keck, was presented at the “Century of Progress Exhibition”. It was a vision of what the future could offer and is considered as a pioneer in modern housing solar design.

Read More