Ebtissam Moustapha, co-founder of Encode Studio and associate professor of architecture and design at Alexandria University
Ebtissam Moustapha, co-founder of Encode Studio and associate professor of architecture and design at Alexandria University

Tamayouz Excellence Award launches 2019 cycle of Women in Architecture and Construction Award

Tamayouz Excellence Award, a leading international awards programme with a focus on the Middle East, has launched its 2019 cycle of the Women in Architecture and Construction Award

The seven-category initiative has also announced a number of other award cycles, including its International Graduation Projects Award, Iraqi Graduation Projects Award and the Mohamed Makiya Prize, while its Dewan Award for Architecture and its Rifat Chadirji Prize for Architecture will be announced shortly. 

Split between a Rising Star Award and a Woman of Outstanding Achievement, the award is open to women from the Near East and North Africa (NENA) who are either employed in the NENA region and specialise in architecture and construction, or who are employed or living abroad but their contribution has had a direct impact on the built environment in the NENA region.

In 2018, the winners were Palestinian architect and author Suad Amiry, who won Woman of Outstanding Achievement, while Egyptian architect and academic Ebtissam Moustapha took home the Rising Star recognition. Fellow Palestinian architect Nadia Habash and Jordanian academic Deyala Tarawneh were highly commended.

“I never thought of being rewarded for what I do, as the work itself has been rewarding all along,” said Amiry upon receiving her award. “But awards like Tamayouz are extremely important — they’re like a candle shedding light on important issues such as the need to protect the cultural heritage and identity in Palestine.

“When you work on a small village in Palestine, you never think that someone sitting in another part of the globe would notice what you’re doing. This recognition not only reassures me that what I did during my life was worthwhile, but it also encourages others and younger architects to follow suit.”

The 2018 Tamayouz jury for the Women in Architecture and Construction Award included Professor Jala Makhzoumi, academic and researcher at the American University of Beirut; Anna Schabel, director of Wilton Studio Ltd in the UK; Mandy Franz, chartered architect and senior associate at MICA Architects in the UK; Kathy Basheva, a RIBA chartered architect and head of development and education at the National Association of Women in Construction (NAWIC) in the UK; and Sarah Akigbogun, founder of Studio Aki London, architect, filmmaker, director of the film ‘She Draws: She Builds’ and vice chair of Women in Architecture UK.

“Architecture is not exactly an easy field for women to excel in, but they do," added Amiry. "In fact, 70 percent of Riwaq’s architects happen to be women. The shortlist for the Tamayouz Award also made me aware of other women architects in the Arab world, and that by itself was rewarding.”

Nominations for the Women in Architecture and Construction Award are open until 1 August, 2019. Submissions can be made through the award's online portal here

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