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FAST is honored to contribute a Keynote on the Architecture, Footprint, and Legacy of UN Peace Operations at the Basel Peace Forum

“Since the end of the Cold War, the United Nations, the European Union, individual states like Switzerland, as well as companies and NGOs have done a great deal to promote peace. Over the years, though, there have been repeated setbacks and previous successes keep being challenged by the latest developments. In the wake of political instabilities and violence in states such as Syria, Iraq, and Nigeria, we believe it is urgent to tackle the theme of peace in new ways.

BLUE exhibition at the Boijmans Museum, Rotterdam

The BLUE exhibition is part of a group show ‘Change the system,’ curated by Annemartine van Kesteren.

The exhibition ‘BLUE: Architecture of UN Peacekeeping Missions‘ was first exhibited as the Dutch entry to the 2016 Venice Architecture Biennale. The installation at the Boijman Museum includes elements such as the Design for Legacy models and the recommendation to the UN.

‘Spaces of Solidarity’ is our upcoming course at Harvard GSD

Spaces of Solidarity’ aims at examining community-driven spaces and spatial processes that pool and share resources to build social cohesion in times of crisis or absence of government, at a variety of scales, places, and contexts. ‘Spaces of Solidarity’ attempts to explore environments of community formation and open up a dialogue on the agency of design in enacting and facilitating actions of solidarity.

Border Ecologies Exhibition at Harvard GSD

November 6, 2017  – December 15, 2017

 Gund Hall, Frances Loeb Library Lobby, Harvard GSD from 

BLUE exhibition at The Boijmans Museum from 14 October 2017 to 14 January 2018

The exhibition of BLUE: Architecture of UN Peacekeeping Missions is part of a group show Change the System curated by Annemartine van Kesteren.

Coming soon: Border Ecologies at Harvard GSD

Borders shape and consolidate relations between states, people, jurisdictions, political entities, and territories, and they often lie at the center of conflict between them. They are tools entangled in complex socio-political and economic ecologies. While some borders are relatively stable, others are in a constant flow. They regulate economic relations and people’s access to places, resources, and rights.

BLUE: Design for Legacy LIBERIA

FAST’s on going investigation of the footprint and legacy of UN peacekeeping missions is continuing with the study of the decommissioning of UNMIL.

More information will be available soon.

FAST has been awarded grants by the Creative Industries Fund and the EFL Foundation to publish our ongoing investigation into the spatiality and legacy of UN Peace Operations

The book will be published in 2018. It will include our entry to the 2016 Venice Architecture Biennale ‘BLUE: Architecture of UN Peacekeeping Missions’ and our ongoing investigation ‘Design for Legacy’ .

The Creative Industries Fund

EFL Foundation

BLUE: Architecture of UN Peacekeeping Missions at the Venice Architecture Biennale

Design for Legacy at the 2017 Future Force Conference

FAST was invited to develop and produce a breakout session for the 2017 Future Force Conference in The Hague.

The breakout session is part of our long term research, advocacy and design project ‘Design for Legacy.’ It aims at introducing architecture and urban design thinking into the planning processes of UN Peace Operations.

To read more

Footprint #19 SPACES OF CONFLICT is now available online

Footprint 19 focuses on the more recent roles of architecture in the contemporary spaces of conflict. Departing from a spatial understanding of geopolitical, climatological and economical conflicts, the various contributions highlight the large scale and phenomenal transitions in the physical world and in society by extrapolating, through examples, the abundance of relations that can be traced between conflict, territory and architecture. Conflict areas often prove to be fertile grounds for innovation and for the emergence of new spatial forms. The issue reports on the state of perpetual global unrest in architecture through a series of articles and case studies that highlight the consequences of conflicts in the places and spaces that we inhabit. In the introduction, these are discussed as an interlinked global reality rather than as isolated incidents. In doing so, the contemporary spaces of conflict are positioned in the context of emerging global trends, conditions, and discourses in the attempt to address their indicative symptoms while reflecting on their underlying causes.”

“Peacekeeping Missions in Cities” and “Design for Legacy” at the Future Force Conference

Our long term research and design project “Design for Legacy,” and the exhibition “BLUE: Architecture of UN Peacekeeping Missions” at the Venice Architecture Biennale inspired a series of conversations and breakout sessions at the 2017 Future Force Conference.

Link to the Future Force Conference website

Link to the project

“Architecture of Peace” at Harvard GSD

We live in an increasingly unstable world, where internal conflicts have become increasingly internationalized, sectarian violence ravages cities and communities, and terrorist threats impact daily routines. This has lead to millions of destroyed homes, conditions of rampant distrust and fear, an unprecedented number of refugees, and the expansion of missions and initiatives for peace. Propelled by this context to critical engagement, this course aims to identify opportunities and challenges to design for peace.

“Architecture of Peace” at Harvard GSD ends with a discussion with Diane Davis, Sandi Hilal, Rosseta Elkin, Pham Phuong, Deen Sharp, Malkit Shoshan, Gizem Sucuoglu and Delia Wendel.

Link to the course page

Sustaining Peace in an Urbanizing World

Sustaining Peace in an Urbanizing World is a long-term multidisciplinary effort to investigate opportunities for sustaining peace in urban environments that are outside the traditional toolbox of peace-making, peace-keeping and peace-building .

Sustaining Peace in an Urbanizing World is a collaborative project between FAST, Terreform, the NYU Center for International Cooperation (CIC) and with the support of UN agencies.


The growing pace of urbanization in conflict-affected countries, the notable increase in the displacement of people to urban areas, coupled with increasing inequality and insecurity within cities creates new challenges for humanitarian action, development, peacebuilding and peacekeeping. These trends require the United Nations, national governments, and the international system to integrate urban perspectives in their work, to devise appropriate and durable responses to multi-layered violence, conflict, and displacement, and to “leave no one behind”.

Sustaining Peace in an Urban World seeks to link The New Urban Agenda, with the outcomes of the recent reviews and processes, most notably on sustaining peace, peace operations, and sustainable development. The core objective is to uncover how urban perspectives can facilitate efforts to sustain peace, tapping into the constructive potential of cities to overcome current global challenges.

“LAND: A Declaration” [embedded tweet, support, and response]

“One might want to propose to burn down the Empire as an act of resistance and dissident, which most likely I’d support.

“D Is for Design: ‘Blue: Architecture of Peacekeeping Missions’, The Dutch Pavilion at The 15th International Architecture Exhibition, Venice.’ A review by Anna Battista

In a previous post last year we mentioned the main theme for the Dutch Pavilion at the 15th International Architecture Exhibition in Venice (until 27th November 2016), but we haven’t reviewed this space yet. Since the architecture Biennale closes this week, let’s have a look at it today.

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