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JOIN US IN Gourna to learn from Hassan Fathy and launch The City We Need Now!

Hassan Fathy’s Legacy and the Sustainable Development Goals towards The City We Need Now! in New Gourna

JOIN on 29 October from 14:00-17:00 PM Cairo Time

Join an Urban Thinkers event on 29 October to exchange on the topic: Architecture for Climate Change Adaptation – Learning from Hassan Fathy”. On the occasion of the World Cities Day 2021 celebrated in Louxor, Egypt, and under the umbrella of the World Urban Campaign, the event is organized by the Hassan Fathy Center for Architecture & Sustainable Development, the International Union of Architects and the Habitat Professionals Forum.

The moderated discussion will explore Hassan Fathy’s legacy on how it can contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals with a focus on reducing poverty, improving livelihoods through crafts, quality education, health and well-being, cultural development, differentiated gender needs, climate resilience and adaptation.

The event will focus on the need to reflect on past practices and vernacular models that can help build climate resilience, the theme of the World Cities Day 2021. Hassan Fathy has been a pioneer of appropriate technologies for building in Egypt using vernacular architecture and design, revisiting Egyptian heritage, while engaging communities, to become as we know the architect of the poor. New Gourna is a prime example of Fathy’s design and approach to architecture, putting people at the center. He has embraced traditional styles, approaches, and materials, believing that they were best suited for the environment. He valued indigenous insights on architecture and believed that they were there for a reason: a direct response to the real indigenous needs. He championed cultural authenticity by using mud bricks as main building materials and designing domed ceilings borrowing from the shapes of Upper Egypt to address weather impacts.

The Center will also launch a local campaign under the slogan "The City We Need Now! New Gourna" to engage local partners in a series of activities to reflect on future directions for New Gourna. This local campaign, the first of this kind under the umbrella of the World Urban Campaign to continue worldwide in 2021-22, will prompt local partners to reflect on the city they need and how to accelerate the implementation of the SDGs locally to realize the New Urban Agenda. The campaign will generate synergies to take action to be part of the solution to deliver the city we need now! By exploring the legacy of Hassan Fathy, local partners can better envisage the immediate and longer term future and how they can contribute towards this common future.

Sri Husnaini Sofjan and Sandeep Chachra, the two co-Chairs of the World Urban Campaign will contribute to the session remotely.

The live reception in New Gourna will see the participation of UN-Habitat through Raf Tuts, Director of the Global Solutions Division.

Mona Rady, Chair of the Habitat Professionals Forum, and UIA Representative is the Lead Person organizing the event. She is a Council member of the Society of Egyptian Architects, Commissioner at the Africa Union of Architects Habitat & Environment Commission (AUA), Steering committee member for Region V Africa International Union of Architects (UIA) Commission on the UN Sustainable Development Goals and Chairwoman of the Art & Architecture House for Planning & Architecture.

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