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The Aga Khan Award for Architecture: Origins and Impact

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Aerial view of the swimming pool by the city beach, Almetyevsk.

© Ivan Petrov

  • COST

    Free and open to the public

  • TYPE




The Aga Khan Award for Architecture was established by His Highness the Aga Khan in 1977 to identify and encourage building concepts that successfully address the needs and aspirations of communities in which Muslims have a significant presence. The Award recognizes examples of architectural excellence in the fields of contemporary design, social housing, community improvement and development, historic preservation, reuse and area conservation, as well as landscape design and improvement of the environment.

In celebration of the 2017-2019 cycle, themed around Architecture in Dialogue, this panel of previous conveners, steering committee, and master jury members will explore the origins of the AKAA and its worldwide impact throughout its 42-year history.


Khalil Pirani, AIA, NCARB
Senior Architect, Kleinfelder


Dr. Nasser Rabbat
Aga Khan Professor of Islamic Architecture, MIT
Steering Committee Member, Aga Khan Award for Architecture (2017–19)

Hasan-Uddin Khan
Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Architecture and Historic Preservation, Roger Williams University
Head of Architecture, Aga Khan HH, France and Switzerland (1984-94)
Convener of the Aga Khan Award for Architecture (1980-82)

Renata Holod
Professor in the Humanities in the History of Art Department (Emerita)
Curator, Near East Section, Penn Museum
Past Convener, Steering Committee Member, and Master Jury Chair of the Aga Khan Award for Architecture

The Aga Khan Award: Architecture in Dialogue

Architecture in Dialogue is an exhibition highlighting the six winners and shortlisted works from the 2017-2019 cycle of the Aga Khan Award for Architecture. The projects on display were selected from hundreds of entries and competed for prizes totaling $ 1 million. Now in its 14th cycle, the Aga Khan Award for Architecture is a program of the Aga Khan Trust for Culture (AKTC), a philanthropic organization that supports a wide range of activities aimed at the preservation and promotion of the material and spiritual heritage of Muslim societies. Established by His Highness the Aga Khan in 1977, the triennial Award is regarded as one of the most important honors in the field and granted to projects—from slum upgrading to high rise “green” buildings—that not only celebrate architectural excellence but also improve the overall quality of life of their surrounding communities.

View the virtual exhibition of Architecture in Dialogue.