Panel 4 pre-event: Rethinking Vulnerability

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On November 10 Christian Benimana and Arif Hasan, Panel Chairs of Panel 4: Design for Health will host the online symposium Design for Health: Rethinking Vulnerability.

The symposium examines how architecture can reconceive health as a design issue. The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted cities across the world. But beyond the emerging narrative of the pandemic accelerating existing global inequalities, its impact on exposing these inequalities must not be forgotten.

Online symposium
November 10, 2022
12:30 – 5pm CAT/CET

As quoted by one of the speakers “a disaster is never natural”. There are natural hazards (e.g. a virus, drought, tsunami) that interact with structural vulnerabilities that have been created by human society which are seen in various forms of inequality. Unfortunately, very often the focus is only on the hazards. The implications of this focus are powerfully captured by the speakers at the symposium presenting new research on the depths of the differing impacts of COVID-19 across different communities globally.

We question the fundamental aspects of vulnerability. Where do we locate the hazards? What´s the “real” disaster? Are they from the outside or are they driven by structural human forces from the inside? What questions should be guiding architects and planners when designing for health in informal settlements?

Presentations by:
Sheela Patel, Activist and Academic, Co-founder of The Slum Dwellers International Network
Arif Hasan, Architect, Lecturer, and Urban Planner
Christian Benimana, Architect, Senior Principal and Managing Director at MASS Design Group
Emmanuel Raju, Director of the Copenhagen Centre for Disaster Research (COPE)
Kirtee Shah, Architect, President and Founder of India Habitat Forum (INHAF) 

Moderated by: Diana Mitlin, Professor of Global Urbanism at The University of Manchester

Meeting ID: 870 0431 4702
Passcode: 036033



The symposium is a pre-event leading up to the UIA World Congress 2023 Copenhagen Sustainable Futures – Leave No One Behind, that will take place in Copenhagen July 2-6, 2023. The congress will focus on the multiple ways in which architecture and the built environment can support the fulfilment of the UN 17 Sustainable Development Goals.

For any queries please contact Research Curator and Coordinator of the UIA World Congress 2023 Copenhagen Science Track, Pernille Maria Bärnheim on

The symposium is organised in collaboration with DigitalFUTURES

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