Dezeen Magazine

David Chipperfield, Diébédo Francis Kéré, Ma Yansong and Elizabeth Diller to speak at RIBA International Week

Dezeen promotion: architects David Chipperfield, Diébédo Francis Kéré,  Ma Yansong and Elizabeth Diller will join Dr Joan Clos of UN-Habitat for the centrepiece conference of the Royal Institute of British Architects' International Week in July.

RIBA International Week, which takes place from 3 to 7 July 2017, is a programme of events and keynote speeches exploring the New Urban Agenda – the United Nations' global strategy for sustainable development and housing over the coming two decades.

Joan Clos portrait
UN-Habitat executive director Joan Clos will open the RIBA International conference

The centrepiece of the week will be a day-long conference on 4 July, opened by a keynote speech about the United Nations' agenda by RIBA Royal Gold Medalist, former mayor of Barcelona and current executive director of UN-Habitat Dr Joan Clos.

David Chipperfield portrait
Key speakers in the morning session include British architect David Chipperfield. Portrait by Ingrid von Kruse

The conference's morning talks will look at the topic from the perspective of architects and also a mayoral, planning and urbanist standpoint.

Key speakers include British architect David Chipperfield, Ma Yansong from Chinese firm MAD, Elizabeth Diller of Diller Scofidio + Renfro, V&A museum director Tristram Hunt, leading sociologist Saskia Sassen and Arup associate director Dan Hill.

Diébédo Francis Kéré
Key speakers in the afternoon session include Diébédo Francis Kéré. Portrait by Jan Ouwerkerk

The afternoon session will focus on international case studies around three core areas from the New Urban Agenda where architects can contribute: social cohesion, housing and cultural heritage.

Key speakers in the afternoon include designer of the Serpentine Gallery Pavilion 2017 Diébédo Francis Kéré, award-winning international practice Urban-Think Tank, former mayor of Rio de Janeiro Eduardo Paes and director of the Aga Khan Award for Architecture Farrokh Derakhshani.

The RIBA International conference is a ticketed event. Tickets can be purchased at

Ma Yansong portrait
Ma Yansong of MAD is another speaker at the RIBA International conference

Other events in the RIBA International Week programme include an exhibition called Beyond Borders featuring a series of site-specific architectural installations.

The week will kick off with a RIBA Late event on Monday 3 July at RIBA in London, where visitors will be able to explore the installations as well as take in films, lives performance and DJs.

Elizabeth Diller portrait
Elizabeth Diller

The call for entries for the second RIBA International Prize, which recognises the best new international civic building, will be launched on Tuesday 4 July, and there will also be a series of masterclasses for architecture students, culminating in a student charrette and a series of manifestos on city-making on Wednesday 5 July.

Burkino Faso National Assembly by Kéré Architecture
Burkina Faso National Assembly by Diébédo Francis Kéré, one of the keynote speakers at RIBA International Week

RIBA International Week will conclude with the Ambassadors' Debate on Thursday 6 July, which will involve each of the RIBA president's ambassadors sharing proposals on their area of expertise – from ethics and diversity to technology and sustainability.

Visit for the full programme of events and to purchase tickets for the RIBA International conference.

Huangshan Mountain Village by MAD
Huangshan Mountain Village by MAD, whose founder Ma Yansong will speak at the RIBA International conference

RIBA International Week 2017

Dates: Monday 3 – Friday 7 July 2017
Venue: RIBA, 66 Portland Place, London W1B 1AD

RIBA International Conference: Change in the City: opportunities for architects in the New Urban Agenda

Date: Tuesday 4 July 2017
Venue: RIBA, 66 Portland Place, London W1B 1AD