Panel IV

Turkey and Syria after the Earthquakes
Panel 4: Long-Term Recovery (2): Building Back Better

October 21, 2023 — New York & Istanbul
10:00 AM EST | 17:00 GMT+3

"Turkey and Syria After the Earthquakes” is a series of four panel discussions curated by Collective Action for Readiness, Recovery, and Resilience (CARRRE), a collective of US-based Turkish-American architects and academics. CARRRE aims to amplify awareness among a global audience regarding the catastrophic repercussions of these earthquakes, and to provide agency to architects, planners, engineers, municipalities, and builders on the ground by assisting with local relief efforts, sharing professional expertise, and aiding in the development of long-term rebuilding strategies. These panels aim to provide an international platform for learning, debate, and actionable projects.

“Long-Term Recovery (2): Building Back Better” is the fourth panel in CARRRE’s four-part series. This panel will examine the challenges and opportunities that arise in connection with the long-term, large-scale planning initiatives and resilient rebuilding of cities and communities in post-earthquake areas. The speakers will address conventional post-disaster planning strategies and building techniques, rapid damage assessment tools developed through AI, and focus on alternative approaches developed for Turkey and other countries.

Key topics include:

Infrastructure - the movement of people and things (utilities, water and waste systems, food production and distribution, transportation, communication, and geology).

2. Planning - Long-term, large-scale planning initiatives and resilient rebuilding of cities and communities in post-earthquake areas.

3. Housing - temporary and permanent (deploy/redeploy systems, temporary leading to permanent housing (transitional), and government, private, and NGO policies and efforts).

4. Community Facilities (education, religious, play, medical, mental health, and spaces for social services).

5. Cultural and Historical Preservation (documentation of buildings and urban fabric, restoration technologies, regional minorities, and identities).

6. Sustainability and Resiliency (technologies, strategies, and case studies).


Prof. Ayşegül Askan, Engineer; Executive Board Member, Earthquake Engineering Association of Turkey (EEAT); Prof. at Middle East Technical University (METU), Dept. of Civil Engineering
2. Karim Elgendy, Urban Sustainability and Climate Expert; Associate Director, Buro Happold, Associate Fellow, Chatham House (Royal Institute of International Affairs); Non-Resident Scholar at the Middle East Institute in D.C.
3. Dr. Yasuaki Onoda, Architect and Planner; Lecturer at UCLA Architecture and Urban Design; Vice President, Architectural Institute of Japan; 2022 Architectural Institute of Japan Research Award
4. Ülge Ugurlu, Senior Project Adviser and Local Government Expert, VNG International, International Cooperation Agency of the Association of Netherlands Municipalities

The panel will simultaneously take place in NYC at the AIA NY - Center for Architecture (registration needed), in Istanbul at Salt Beyoglu (walk-in, no registration needed), and online (registration needed).

For online registration, please follow the instructions on the AIA website.


Prof. Ayşegül Askan Gündoğan

Architect and Planner; Lecturer at UCLA Architecture and Urban Design; Vice President, Architectural Institute of Japan; 2022 Architectural Institute of Japan Research Award

Aysegul Askan is a professor of civil engineering, earthquake studies and applied mathematics at Middle East Technical University (METU) in Ankara, Turkey. She received her PhD from Carnegie Mellon University in 2006 with her thesis focusing on full waveform inversion for seismic velocity structures. Dr. Askan’s field of expertise includes engineering seismology, earthquake engineering, scientific computing and numerical methods, effects of simulated ground motions on structures, multi-scale seismic risk and loss estimations in urban regions, structural reliability and parameter estimation problems for site characterization. She holds several administrative positions in education and research. She is the department head of Earthquake Studies program and vice-director of Graduate School of Natural and Applied Sciences at METU. She is the current general secretary of Earthquake Engineering Association of Turkey and a member of the National Disaster and Emergency Consultancy Board of Turkey. She is a board member COSMOS and European Seismological Commission. Dr. Askan has led and participated in several EU projects, Turkish-Japanese bilateral projects and national projects focusing on seismic hazard and risk problems. She has supervised more than 35 graduate students at METU since 2007. The list of publications by Dr. Askan includes 58 peer-reviewed international journal articles and 3 book chapters with an h-index of 22.

Karim Elgendy

Karim is an urban sustainability and climate expert based in London. He is an Associate Director at Buro Happold, an Associate Fellow at Chatham House (The Royal Institute of International Affairs), and a Non-Resident Scholar at the Middle East Institute in Washington. Karim is also the Founder and Coordinator of Carboun, an advocacy initiative promoting sustainability in cities of the Middle East and North Africa, through research and communication.

Karim's interests include urban sustainability and resilience, climate policy, energy transition, urban metabolism, and the circular economy. His current work focuses on the Middle East and North Africa region, especially around the Eastern Mediterranean and the Gulf, but his two decades of experience also span Europe, North America, and sub-Saharan Africa.

Karim has written tens of articles and publications. He has been invited to over one hundred public speaking engagements and has delivered guest lectures at some of the world's leading universities. He is regularly interviewed and quoted by TV, print and digital media, and has appeared in most mainstream media outlets including The New York Times, The Washington Post, Financial Times, BBC, Reuters, Associated Press, Bloomberg, CNN, NBC, ABC News, PBS, NPR, Le Monde, USA Today, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, Christian Science Monitor, Independent, France 24, Aljazeera, Al Arabiya, Sky News Arabia, TRT, Asharq, and RT.

Karim is the recipient of the 2013 Green Building Entrepreneurship Award by the World Green Building Council, is a chartered member of the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA), and has a masters degree from the University of California, Berkeley.

Dr. Yasuaki Onoda

After becoming a well-known architect after his contribution to the Sendai Mediatheque, a masterpiece of contemporary architecture designed by Toyo Ito in 2001, he has created many valuable architectural projects, together with other talented architects, through challenging processes. Since the March 2011 disaster in Japan, Onoda has been playing an important role as an organizer for reconstruction projects in disaster affected areas, as well as conducting critical research on the implications of recovery planning, which has been shared through key publications.

Yasuaki Onoda has been received numerous awards in Japan, including: the 2022 Architectural Institute of Japan Research Award; 2016 Architectural Institute of Japan Publishing Award for his book, Pre-Design Thinking; 2009 Architectural Institute of Japan Education Award for international workshops; 2019 Good Design Special Award for Kamaishi Public Housing with Manabu Chiba; 2019 Good Design Special Award for Toni Elementary School with Kumiko Inui; 2013 Building Contractors Society Award for Center Square, Tohoku University; 2003 Architectural Institute of Japan Design Award for Reihoku Community Hall with Hitoshi Abe.

He is also active in the academic field internationally, as the associate editor of JAABE and a visiting professor of Hongkong University or Chongqing University in China. In 2021, he was elected vice president of the Architectural Institute of Japan, where he is tackling difficult issues such as structural reform for sustainable archiving and application of architectural knowledge in Japan.

Ülge Uğurlu

Ülge Uğurlu is a senior consultant with extensive experience in technical assistance projects on local government and public administration reform. Since 2005, she has been providing support to central and local level insituions and civil society in Türkiye in co-opera:on with national and international counterparts. She has been working for VNG International (International Co operation Agency of the Association of Netherlands Municipalities) since 2011, and has been an Associated Expert of VNG International since 2017.

In addition to local administration reform; improving participatory strategic governance at local level, capacity building in governorates, integration of disadvantaged persons in employment and social support services, strengthening local investment planning capacity with the participation of local actors, improving local government resilience, promoting social inclusion, increasing adaptability of public employees and employers through social dialogue, decentralisation, public sector-civil society co operation, town twinning between the EU and Türkiye, and municipal alliances with citizens’ assemblies were also among the specific topics of her contributions to institution
building. The ‘Participation Task Forces’ approach designed and implemented in co-opera:on with the Union of Municipalities of Türkiye between 2020 and 2022 was internationally recognised as a leading innovation by the OECD. Currently, she serves as the Team Leader of the disaster response, recovery, and reconstruction project of VNG International focusing on the municipalities affected by the earthquakes of February 2023.

Her expertise centres on improving public decision-making and service delivery processes in line with good governance principles. She contributes to strengthening technical capacity and enhancing public governance by way of synthesizing and interpreting latest research and technologies for deliberation and experimentation with diverse stakeholders. She received her bachelor’s degree in City and Regional Planning, and also her master’s degree in European Studies from the Middle East Technical University. She holds an MSc in Regional and Urban Planning Studies from the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE), and a CAS in Public Governance and Administration from ETH Zürich.
Mustafa Abadan
Moderator / Overview
CARRRE Members; Inanc Eray, Ferda Kolatan, Kutan Ayata
Prof. Ayşegül Askan
Speaker 2
Karim Elgendy
Speaker 3
Dr. Yasuaki Onoda
Speaker 4
Ülge Ugurlu

Moderators: CARRRE Members: Inanc Eray (Istanbul), Ferda Kolatan (New York City), and Kutan Ayata (Los Angeles)

Registration: The panel will simultaneously take place in NYC at the AIA NY - Center for Architecture (registration needed), in Istanbul at Salt Beyoglu (walk-in, no registration needed), and online (registration needed). For online registration, please follow the instructions on the AIA website.

The organizers are strongly encouraging that attendees make donations to Turkish Philanthropy Funds in support of the planning and rebuilding efforts.

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