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The Aga Khan Award for Architecture: Ecological Resiliency and Recovery

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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.

Ecological resiliency/recovery is one of the three dominant themes that emerged, and which define, the winners of the 2017-2019 cycle Aga Khan Award for Architecture. More than ever, the conventional practice of architecture faces a crisis of relevance. Recognition in the profession remains globally centered, based on a handful of lavish commissions that produce aesthetically pleasing objects. Yet these projects sit uncomfortably amidst the conditions in which the majority of the planet’s population lives today.

This panel will explore themes of innovative sustainable design, positive environmental legacy of buildings, and how best practices from the 2019 AKAA winners can be applied to our local context.


James Wescoat FASLA
Retired Professor, MIT’s Aga Khan Program for Islamic Architecture
Former Co-Director, Leventhal Center for Advanced Urbanism


Pallavi Kalia Mande
Founder and Director, tamraparni
Loeb Fellow, 2017

Sheila Kennedy FAIA
Professor of the Practice of Architecture, MIT
Founding Principal of Kennedy & Violich Architecture

Jessica Leete
Landscape Architect and Sculptor
Urban Designer and Ecology Educator, Boston.Studio

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.