Conference Schedule

White Sands










4:50 pm


Introduction by Moderator


Anna Heringer

Architecture is a Tool to Improve Lives 

Xu Tiantian

Rethinking Rural

Welcome Remarks by Festival Director

Singapore time

Vo Trong Nghia

Redefining the Landscape: Creating Innovative Architectural Concepts Through Buddist Meditation and the 5 Precepts

Prasoon Kumar

Why we Design Poorly for the Poor

Moderated Q&A with speakers 

Day One | 28 September

 Radical Indigenism 

Opening Address by SIA President

End of programme

*Limited Seats* / 28 Sep / 7:00 - 8:15pm Singapore time

How to Save OUR World while Running a Sustainable Architecture Practice

By Anna Heringer, Studio Anna Heringer | Germany

“I strongly believe that what we have in architecture…is a very important and powerful tool to improve lives.  Because in the end…it’s a lot of money that is in our hands and we are responsible for it…and we need to take care of our beautiful planet. We need to find an architecture that helps reduce the injustice that is happening all over the world and we can…and should contribute to cultural diversity. And I think for these, architecture is a wonderful tool.” Anna Heringer

Special Dialogue with Anna Heringer 

anna 1.jpg

< DESI Training Center, Bangladesh by Studio Anna Heringer.

Photography: Naquib Hossain




Radical Indigenism


Singapore Time


28 September 2020

3:00 - 6:00pm | Conference ( + full schedule here)

7:00 - 8:15pm | Special  Dialogue with Anna Heringer

Anna Heringer, Xu Tiantian, Vo Trong Nghia, Prasoon Kumar

Architecture is a Tool to Improve Lives

Anna Heringer

Studio Anna Heringer | Germany

For Anna Heringer architecture is a tool to improve lives. As an architect and honorary professor of the UNESCO Chair of Earthen Architecture, Building Cultures, and Sustainable Development she is focusing on the use of natural building materials. She has been actively involved in development cooperation in Bangladesh since 1997. Her diploma work, the METI School in Rudrapur got realized in 2005 and won the Aga Khan Award for Architecture in 2007. Over the years, Studio Anna Heringer has realized further projects in Asia, Africa, and Europe. Anna is lecturing worldwide at conferences, including TED and has been visiting professor at various universities such as Harvard, ETH Zurich and TU Munich.

She received numerous honors: the Global Award for Sustainable Architecture, the AR Emerging Architecture Award, the Loeb Fellowship at Harvard’s GSD and a RIBA International Fellowship. Her work was widely published and exhibited in the MoMA New York, the V&A Museum in London and at the Venice Biennale among other places.

+ Find out more about Studio Anna Heringer here


Building with natural locally available materials is my big passion. I believe that there is so much attraction and beautiful materials being given by nature for free. All we need is our sensitivity to see those materials and our creativity to use them…and that’s what I am trying to do with my architecture. My favourite material is mud, just the material below our feet… and bamboo that is growing in abundance.





Design Empowerment


Singapore Time


29 September 2020

3:00 - 5:30pm | Conference ( + full schedule here)

Hsieh Ying-Chun, Joshua Peasley & Harrison Marshall, Daliana Suryawinata & Florian Heinzelmann, Ar. Chu Yang Keng

"Tribe" as the New Civilisation 未來「新文明」- 部落

Hsieh Ying- Chun

Atelier - 3 | Taiwan

Hsieh devotes himself to post-disaster reconstruction for more than 20 years. He considers architecture and town-planning a collective endeavor and participatory effort. His projects often originate from the need to provide a prompt response to sudden and unexpected environmental or climatic emergencies, focusing on principles such as biocompatibility, sustainability and self-sufficiency.


Following the massive earthquake in Taiwan on September 21, 1999, Hsieh took his office to the disaster area in Nantou County, to begin reconstruction efforts there. Since then he had traveled to rural areas of Hebei, Henan, and Anhui to promote cooperative, sustainable building in the countryside; reconstructed homes for Sichuan earthquake disaster victims in isolated mountain areas with members of his Rural Architecture Studio; rebuilt longstanding tribal buildings for indigenous minorities after the 2009 Taiwan typhoon; and also completed work on settlements for Tibetan herders.


Hsieh was awarded the Curry Stone Design Prize in 2011, the Golden Prize of the Shenzhen Affordable Housing Design Competition (China) and the 16th National Awards for Arts (Taiwan) in 2012. He was shortlisted for UN-HABITAT's Best Practice award in 2004, and represented Taiwan at the Venice Biennale International Architecture and International Art Exhibitions in 2006 and 2009 respectively. He also took part in Liverpool Biennale 2012.

+ Find out more about Atelier-3 here


We helped the Thau minority tribe build their own village, located beside Taiwan’s Sun Moon Lake. This is a very special Thau tribe… so even after the village for the tribe was completed, I decided to continue staying here. As you can see from my photo, this is the tent, the mosquito net… and we have been working below here for almost 20 years. The greatest take-away for the entire experience is being able to live and work with these indigenous people all these years. Their notions and thoughts deeply influenced our work and our values. 


* This talk will be in Mandarin with English subtitle or translation where applicable*




Empathic Interventions


Singapore Time


30 September 2020

7:00 - 9:30 pm  | Conference ( + full schedule here)

Stefan Sjöberg, Kelly Alvarez Doran, James Shen, William Ti Jr., Ar. Michael Leong,

Extending Fabrics

Stefan Sjoberg

Kjellander Sjöberg | Sweden

Stefan founded the practice with Ola Kjellander in 1998 and over two decades he has established an active and sustainable approach to the design and programming of the built environment. His work is firmly developed from an understanding and analysis of the urban fabric, culture, place, climate, use and local conditions, where his architecture always tells a story. With an engaged and creative mind-set, he believes in shaping integrated and successful projects for quality lifestyles; vibrant surroundings and new placemaking. He is driven by his passion for innovation and craftsmanship, with a pragmatic and technically coherent methodology. His design vision is to contribute to neighbourhoods and meeting places, for healthy and thriving communities. Stefan has received a range of awards and prizes for KS competition-winning designs and completed buildings. Alongside his architectural practice, Stefan is a frequent public speaker and initiates research through think tanks, workshops and exhibitions. 

+ Find out more about Kjellander Sjöberg here


We focus on the urban level in our projects, looking at transformative place-making as the foundation of our work. We lean on the sustainable principle that creates good living environment for everyone.




Meet our moderators

 Day One  Low Shi Ping 

Low Shi Ping is the Contributing Editor of design and architecture magazine d+a and Director of content development consultancy LSP Communications. Based in Singapore, Shi Ping is a proficient freelance writer and editor who has accumulated more than 15 years of experience in the media industry and communications roles. She previously laid the corporate branding framework for then-start-up Italian lifestyle design firm Mercurio Design Lab, and later, was Deputy Editor of high society magazine Prestige Singapore. Among the subjects she is well-versed in include design, architecture, hospitality, luxury lifestyle and soft business news. Since stepping out on her own in January 2015, Shi Ping has successfully amassed a diverse portfolio of clients in the media and companies across a broad range of industries. More recently, she was the Editor of d+a and worked on book projects for RSP Architects Planners & Engineers and Spanish surface cladding firm Cosentino.

 Day Two  Dr. Ar. Lai Chee Kien 

Lai Chee Kien researches on histories of art, architecture, settlements, urbanism and landscapes in Southeast Asia. He is an architectural and urban historian, and a registered architect in Singapore. He graduated from the National University of Singapore with an M Arch. by research [1996], and a PhD in History of Architecture & Urban Design from the University of California, Berkeley [2005]. His publications include Building Merdeka: Independence Architecture in Kuala Lumpur(2007), Building Memories: People, Architecture, Independence(2016) [Book of the Year, Singapore], The Merdeka Interviews: Architects, Engineers and Artists of Malaysia’s Independence (2018, co-authored), and Singapore Chronicles: Architecture (2019). He is a Vice-President of the Society of Architectural and Urban Historians of Asia (SAUH-Asia), a Board Member of the Spatial Language Foundation of Arts and Culture (Taiwan), and an Advisory Council Member of the International Association for the Study of Traditional Environments (IASTE).

 Day Three  Dr. Jeffrey Chan Kok Hui 

Jeffrey Chan is an assistant professor at SUTD. He is jointly appointed in the Humanities, Arts, and the Social Sciences, and the Design and Artificial Intelligence program. His research focuses on design ethics and the city. Presently, he is working on three research projects: the design of sharing systems with collaborators from NUS and Tsinghua University (China), the ethics of flood control with collaborators from National Taiwan University and Academia Sinica (Taiwan), and the design ethics of trustworthy AI with collaborators from Chung-Ang University (South Korea). He has written for The Singapore Architect, and the AsiaGlobal Online Journal of the Asia Global Institute, a think tank at the University of Hong Kong. He has co-edited a special issue of Built Environment journal, and is an editorial board member of journal, Socio-Ecological Practice Research. Jeffrey is also the author of two books, Urban Ethics in the Anthropocene (2019) and Sharing by Design (2020).