Ben van Berkel of UNStudio and Jeanne Gang of Studio Gang.
Ben van Berkel of UNStudio and Jeanne Gang of Studio Gang.

World Architecture Festival goes virtual in December

The festival will return as a live event in June 2021

WAFVirtual will be held from November 30-December 4, 2020, where the worldwide architectural community will engage in a week of live content, special prizes, talks, panel discussions and networking opportunities with peers and WAF partners. Registration will be free for architects and design professionals.

Headline speakers will include Sir Peter Cook, Jeanne Gang of Studio Gang and Ben van Berkel of UNStudio. A series of talks will discuss pressing international topics including living with pandemics and winning new business in a post-COVID world, as well as looking at the latest developments in product design, technical innovation, and emerging architects.

There will also be coverage of special prizes including the WAF/PechaKucha ‘Isolation Transformed’ competition, The Architecture Drawing Prize, and the Grohe Water Research Prize. In addition, the first edition of WAF China will take place at the end of November, including online awards, talks, and a live ceremony in Chengdu.

Due to the global impact of the Coronavirus pandemic, the World Architecture Festival and INSIDE World Festival of Interiors will now take place from June 23-25, 2021, remaining at the FIL exhibition centre in Lisbon. The festival will continue to include live judging, keynote talks, fringe events, exhibitions, and award presentations. The WAF awards entry deadline will be extended to January 8, 2021; all completed buildings up to that date may be entered, as well as future projects, interiors, and landscape designs.

Commenting on the updated programme, WAF and INSIDE programme director Paul Finch commented: “We have been closely monitoring the ongoing pandemic situation, and, with safety being our number one priority, have concluded that postponement of the physical festival from the original December date is the best course of action for all concerned. We are turning the challenge of postponement into opportunities to provide additional online content and to expand the WAF brand in China. We look forward to being able to meet in happier and safer circumstances next June, and thank our partners, supporters, award entrants, speakers and judges for their ongoing support.”

For more details on World Architecture Festival 2021 or to register free for WAFVirtual in December 2020, please visit or @worldarchfest #WAF2021 #WAFVirtual

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