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From Research to Practice: Labour, Work and Architecture

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B117 Theatre, Basement

Melbourne School of Design

Masson Road

University of Melbourne, VIC 3010

Australia

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Reflecting on his PhD research read at the University of Melbourne and his subsequent architectural practice based in Sri Lanka, this talk by Milinda Pathiraja explores the possible role of architects (active in developing-world regions) as industrial policy-makers. It stems from the idea that, when developed with an understanding of regional characteristics, idiosyncrasies and limitations, the strategic design of architectural and technological configurations can not only produce sound building artifacts but also increase technical capacity in the workforce.
By using a sample of building projects realized in Sri Lanka, the presentation evaluates how architectural intent and resolution can incorporate technical decisions carrying policy implications in terms of incremental labour development and organisation.

Milinda Pathiraja is a co-founder of the Colombo firm RAW (Robust Architecture Workshop). A PhD graduate in architectural design at The University of Melbourne, he received the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) President’s Award for Outstanding PhD Thesis and the CIOB Australasia Excellent Building Postgraduate (Research) Award in 2011, The University of Melbourne Chancellor’s Prize for PhD in 2012, and the Australian Alumni Excellence Award for Education in 2014. Milinda believes in the power of architecture to integrate and contribute to the resolution of social, political and economic challenges. He was one of the 88 architects profiled at the international section of the 2016 Venice Biennale for architecture. His practice RAW won the 2015 Global Silver Award for Sustainable Construction from the Lafarge Holcim Foundation (Switzerland) and the 2016 Terra Award for earthen architectures under the category ‘cultural facilities’ (France).


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B117 Theatre, Basement

Melbourne School of Design

Masson Road

University of Melbourne, VIC 3010

Australia

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