The 162nd RIHN seminar

Date: August 9th, 2018 (Thursday) 13:30 - 15:00
Place: Seminar Rooms 3 & 4, RIHN ( → Access)
Lecturer: Naima Benkari
Visiting Research Fellow, RIHN / Assistant Professor, Sultan Qaboos University, Oman
Title: Engaging the future: Initiatives of the local community in the revival of the Vernacular Architecture in Oman
Language: English

This seminar will present the preliminary results of an ongoing research that analyzes the very first experiences of local communities’ initiatives in the re-habilitation of the vernacular heritage in Oman. It discusses three initiatives made by Omani communities in traditional settlements in Oman dating back to the 17th century (Misfat Al Abryeen, Al Hamra, and Al ‘Aqor), all located in Al-Dakhiliya region, near the city of Nizwa, the previous capital of Oman.

A bibliographic based research helped to identify the historic and social profile of the settlements and their architectural characters. On-site visits and interviews with the representatives of the local community, the projects’ leaders as well as with other residents and visitors, were undertaken to comprehend the mechanisms of such initiatives and their effect on the perception of the vernacular architecture in Oman. The research describes the richness of the investigated settlements from the historic and social point of view, besides their picturesque attributes. The paper also highlights the blossoming of a local community's awareness of the value of Oman's heritage and the interest in reusing it. This investigation revealed the emergence of a renewed relationship of the Omanis with their vernacular heritage. The presentation will also discuss the most problematic aspects in such initiatives.

Contact: RIHN Center: KONDO Yasuhisa E-mail