Dean of the School of Architecture
Royal College of Arts, London
Curator, Sharjah Architectural Triennial
5 – 6pm D3 Main Stage, Building 4
Sharjah Architectural Triennial: Rights of Future Generations
We are connected to future generations through present decisions, but can we imagine future generations as bearers of rights in the present? How do we negotiate with a generation that is yet to exist? What does it mean to articulate this intergenerational relationship in terms of rights discourse - in terms of rights to cities, to memories, to traditions, and histories?
Already expressed in various traditions of indigenous thought and now emerging as one of the most radical proposals within international law, the rights of future generations is a concept that has the potential to fundamentally reshape the way we think about the design of our societies and our environment - with profound implications for architecture, heritage, planning, and preservation practices.
Using Sharjah as its primary field of research, this event brings together an emerging generation of architects, urban designers, planners, scholars and artists from across North Africa, the Middle East, South Asia and their diaspora. It responds to the unique challenges and opportunities faced by our generation in terms of emancipatory struggles, institution building, and historical archives, in such a way as to foreground their future possibilities. It aims to use the occasion of the exhibition to establish a series of conceptual, practical, and legal legacies that will resonate through architectural discourse both within and beyond the Arabic speaking world.