8th International Urban Design Conference: Cities in Distress, University of Moratuwa, Sri Lanka.

  • Ashraf M. Salama (Keynote/plenary speaker)
  • Janaka Wijesundara (Chair)
  • Ranjith Dayarathne (Organiser)

Activity: Participating in or organising an event typesKey-note speaker and plenary lectures at conferences


Keynote Title:
Salama, A. M., Revisiting People-Place Narrative: Architectural and Urban Implications in a Post Pandemic Virtual World. 8th Int'l. Urban Design Conference: Cities in Distress.

This talk is situated in the context of the global pandemic condition which has promoted questions about the need to rethink the relationship between people and places. While I have instigated initial ideas and responses since April 2020, which were published and presented in various academic and professional gathering, it is increasingly palpable that the global pandemic is shifting the way we think about and use the spatial environment at various scales. This warrants a continuous discussion on what the implications of disease spread are for architectural and urban research, education and practice. The talk provides an analysis of the potential contribution of architecture and urban design and planning in generating knowledge that responds to pressing questions about the current and post pandemic condition. The implications of the pandemic for architects and urban planners appear to be wide and far reaching and are already reshaping architectural research and education and the overall narrative. Looking ahead to the post-pandemic architecture and urbanism, architecture and urbanism as academic disciplines and professions that influence, in many different ways, individuals, communities, and societies, can support efforts through: developing new insights into the impact of a pandemic on cities and urban environments now and in the future; developing new understandings relevant to the characteristics of urban spaces which ensue from these insights; conducting research to comprehend the socio-spatial implications of COVID-19 measures and guidelines introduced by governments and authorities to fight the spread of the disease; identifying new conceptions related to emerging lifestyles which stem from the new spatial environments that integrate working and living patterns; and ultimately developing design responses towards creating healthy environments that successfully accommodate the infected populations while addressing the associated social and psychological repercussions. While the talk embeds several lines of inquiry framed to address the pandemic condition, it the central theme is future people-place narratives in a post pandemic virtual world.
Period15 Dec 2020
Event typeConference
LocationMoratuwa, Sri LankaShow on map
Degree of RecognitionInternational


  • Covid-19
  • pandemic
  • People-place
  • socio-spatial practices
  • urban space