Aga Khan Award for Architecture 2022 and ArCHIAM 10th anniversary

A collage of previous winners of the Aga Khan award

The Aga Khan Trust for Culture, ArCHIAM Research Centre and Liverpool School of Architecture have teamed up to bring to Liverpool’s RIBA North an exciting month-long programme of exhibitions, talks and film screenings that will celebrate the 15th cycle (2020-2022) of the Aga Khan Award for Architecture and ArCHIAM 10th anniversary, between 30th May and 30th June.

An evening event on Tuesday 30th May, at Mann Island in Liverpool City Centre attended by the Vice Chancellor, Professor Tim Jones, will open the 2022 Aga Khan Award for Architecture exhibition, which will showcase the 14 shortlisted and 6 winning projects.

On display will be architectural excellence that reimagines reality, charting new territories, possibilities and directions by promoting ways in which environmental impact and innovation can be fully embedded in design and procurement processes, protecting people and places and thereby showcasing responses to future crises, disasters and conflicts.

The Aga Khan Award for Architecture (AKAA), presented in three-year cycles, was set up in 1977 by His Highness the Aga Khan alongside two professorships in Architecture at Harvard and MIT, at a time when few architectural awards existed, making it one of the oldest established international architectural awards. The award aims to identify and recognise architectural concepts in the fields of contemporary design, social housing, community development and improvement, restoration, reuse and area conservation, which successfully address the needs and aspirations of societies.

A collage of some previous winners of the Aga Khan award

A collage of the winning projects of the 2022 Aga Khan Award for Architecture

ArCHIAM (Centre for the Study of Architecture and Cultural Heritage of India, Arabia and the Maghreb) is an interdisciplinary research platform dedicated to studying how human culture and social practices are expressed spatially, and how in turn space affects the cultural practices of groups and communities. Cutting across traditional disciplinary boundaries, the Centre provides an exciting milieu for the study of both historical and contemporary phenomena with the aim to develop theoretical positions, but also practice-based research.

Farrokh Derakhshani, Director of the Aga Khan Award for Architecture, said “The importance of this collaboration with the University of Liverpool lies in its international approach to the studies focusing on quality of life and its engagement with players in the field. This is fully in line with the Award’s aspirations seeking to identify successful achievements in the built environments around the world that can be models for others challenging issues such as identity, climate, displacement and lack of liveable spaces around the globe.”


On Wednesday 31st May, the symposium Inclusive, Sustainable, Innovative will explore the changing nature of globalised practice and the paradoxical relationship between globalisation and inclusiveness. The event will include talks from architects and academics associated with the award process, as well as discussions involving international and UK architecture figures, academics from the University of Liverpool and Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University (XJTLU), and local architecture practitioners. To complement the event will be the screening of two films created by XJTLU academics and students on previous award-winning Chinese projects.

On Friday 9th June, the colloquium Heritage and Development: Bridging Gaps, Shaping Futures will mark the 10-year anniversary of ArCHIAM, based at the Liverpool School of Architecture. Keynote speakers and members of ArCHIAM will engage in a discussion on the links between cultural heritage, sustainable development, plurality and social cohesion, in the backdrop of interactive virtual experiences, film screenings and an exhibition of the Centre’s work.

Professor Soumyen Bandypadhyay, Sir James Stirling Chair in Architecture and Director of ArCHIAM, who took part in the Aga Khan Award for Architecture Seminar (Muscat, 30th October 2022) to put the award-winning architecture in the context of Oman, said: The Aga Khan Award for Architecture combines creative aspirations with a deep social concern. The exhibition of winning and shortlisted projects, recognised through the 2022 cycle of awards, demonstrate extraordinary diversity of designers and approaches. The ArCHIAM research centre at the Liverpool School of Architecture has been working closely with the Aga Khan Trust for Culture on education and research projects. By bringing the exhibition to Liverpool we hope to inspire Architecture students and practitioners with a refreshing strand of creativity, and strengthen the relationship between the two institutions.”

Professor Soumyen Bandypadhyay

Prof Soumyen Bandyopadhyay. Image copyright: Ministry of Culture, Sports and Youth, Sultanate of Oman

Professor Ola Uduku, Roscoe Chair of Architecture and Head of University of Liverpool School of Architecture, said “We are delighted as a School to be associated with the hosting of the 2022 Aga Khan Award for Architecture exhibition, now a significant event in the Architecture calendar. Over the years the exhibition has successfully showcased the architecture of the majority world and the key role architecture can plan in improving the lives of communities worldwide. The award has always considered the socio-environmental contexts to the buildings, increasingly foregrounding the importance of addressing issues such as equality and support for the disadvantaged and today’s environmental and climate concerns, themes central to our teaching and research at the Liverpool School of Architecture.”

The 2022 Aga Khan Award for Architecture & ArCHIAM Exhibition on Tuesday 30 May is free to attend but please register your attendance here.