INTBAU World Congress 2018: Everything Old is New Again

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INTBAU World Congress 2018: Everything Old is New Again

November 27, 2018 @ 8:30 am - November 28, 2018 @ 8:00 pm EST


INTBAU (The International Network for Traditional Building, Architecture & Urbanism) is delighted to announce the 2018 World Congress: Everything Old is New Again on November 27th and 28th at the Royal Society of Arts, London.

Attracting key speakers and senior international figures from a range of backgrounds the INTBAU World Congress is a popular biennial forum which brings together global perspectives and knowledge for discussion and debate of pressing issues and difficult questions facing the built environment in communities around the world.

The high level debate and discussion at the World Congress has afforded INTBAU the opportunity to publish calls to action and positioning research on the benefits of traditional architecture and urban design in creating better places for people to live that have been shared around the world.

Over three sessions entitled Contexts, Materials and Identities, the 2018 Congress will explore in the context of globalization, rapid urbanization and climate change what appears to be a resurgence in the use of natural materials and traditional forms for buildings and places.

Using perspectives and case studies from developed and developing economies around the world, speakers, panels and audience discussions will consider what could lie behind this resurgence. To what extent and where is it taking place in the world? Is it the expression of a quest for identity and meaning, or of nostalgia for the past in the face of an uncertain future? Is it an inevitable, and perhaps temporary, shift into a new period of architectural style, or does it come from an environmental awareness that resources are finite?

The Congress will explore opposing views on the resurgence and whether it is Western-led, coming from a position where there is the luxury of choice. The use of traditional forms and materials are often stigmatized in many developing economies, meaning it risks being patronizing to suggest their use instead of more modern materials, such as concrete. Could there be other ways we can build ecologically without a return to vernacular traditions?

At the heart of the debate will be whether old solutions can really help solve the social and environmental challenges faced by communities around the world, today.

The Congress will also celebrate the contributions that traditional methods of building and place-making offer to communities around the world with the presentation of INTBAU’s Excellence Awards. On 28th November, immediately following the Congress, the INTBAU Excellence Awards will be presented in the Great Room at the Royal Society of Arts. There are four categories for the Awards: Community Engagement; New Building; Urban Design; and Emerging Talent. Full details of the submission criteria and the closing date for entries can be found here.

For a list of confirmed speakers and the full program for this year’s Congress, please see here.

Bookings: Concessions and discounts on early bookings are available. Tickets can be booked here.


INTBAU was established in 2001, and has since gained 31 chapters and nearly 6,000 members in over 100 countries worldwide. We work under the patronage of our founder, HRH The Prince of Wales.

INTBAU’s mission is to support traditional building, the maintenance of local character, and the creation of better places to live. We do this through workshops, summer schools, study tours, conferences, awards, and competitions. Our three objectives are to research, educate, and engage as widely as possible on the value and relevance of traditional architecture and urban design.

INTBAU is a unique, established resource for global knowledge of traditional architecture and urban design. Our active network consists of individuals and institutions who design, make, maintain, study, or enjoy traditional buildings and places.


November 27, 2018 @ 8:30 am EST
November 28, 2018 @ 8:00 pm EST
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Royal Society of Arts
8 John Adam St
London, England WC2N 6EZ United Kingdom
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+44 20 7930 5115
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