Architecture, City and Power: Toward Liveable and Humanized Urban Future


From the Great Pyramid of Giza (Egypt, 2560 B.C.) was built to the Candi Prambanan (Indonesia, 850 A.D.) until the process of completion of the Temple of the Sagrada Familia (Spain, 1882 A.D.- present), architecture always seen as the outstanding achievement of civilization. Architecture shapes our settlement, our settlement shapes our city, and the city makes civilization. Behind those achievements, there significant role of an architect as a representative of power. The connection between power, architecture, and the city can be seen in many cases; Juscelino Kubitschek with Oscar Niemeyer for Brasilia, Adolf Hitler with Abert Speer for the Cathedral of Light; Sultans Suleiman the Magnificent and Mimar Sinan for Süleymaniye Mosque, etc. all of those works are representing the symbolism of power. Quoting the Matrix trilogy film scene, "I'm the architect, I created the matrix"; an architect has the power to create vice-versa.

In the urban context, the spatial articulation of urban space with corresponding building design can facilitate the city's shared by people with different values, goals, life experiences, and positions in the social structure. The spatial structure could do this by allowing for the material concretization of these differences and involving them in a sustained political and cultural dialogue from which innovative forms of life-praxis could result. If architecture and urban design could articulate types of urban space that foster and sustain political discourse, and if the powers of space as a medium to sustain and deepen such discourse could be developed, then an urban spatial structure could be generated, which would enable people to understand and to feel what kinds of powers and corresponding needs are actually at work. To be more precise, architecture can create urban structure and building-types that facilitate the realization of a better local economic and political community. (J A Knesl, 10-11, 1984).

The 21st century poses multiple challenges towards our cities; climate-related disasters, shrinking public space, increasingly unaffordable housing, politically polarized citizens, etc. This webinar outlines how intervention through architecture and urban design could enhance the quality of our environment, democracy, settlement, and our cities in general.


Discussing the how development of the housing for all related with architecture and city especially policy.

Partner organisation(s)

1. Architecture Department, the University of 17 Agustus 1945 Surabaya;
2. Architecture Department, the University of 17 Agustus 1945 Samarinda;
3. UNTAG Surabaya Resilience Institute;
4. UNTAG Samarinda Center for Public Space Studies

1. Dr. Ir. R.A. Retno Hastijanti, M.T. (Architecture Department, the University 17 Agustus 1945 Surabaya;
2. David A. Sagita (UNTAG Resilience Institute);
3. Ir. Prasetyo, MT (Architecture Department, the University of 17 Agustus 1945 Samarinda)

Target Audience

International and national audience:
- Local, Regional, and National Government
- City Leaders
- Civil Society Organizations
- Non-Government Organizations
- Academia
- Public

Activity format

The format of this event is half day online seminar.

Technical requirements

Standard requirements for webinar will provided by Architecture Department, the University of 17 Agustus 1945 Surabaya

Draft programme

Prolog: Ir. Wardhana, MT (Architecture UNTAG Samarinda)

Nicolas Saputra
Filmmaker Tanakhir Film and Architecture Graduate

Nezar Patria
Jakarta Post Editor-in-Chief and Architectural Observer

Muamar Vebry
EU Programme Manager and Architecture Graduate

Epilog: Dr. Ir. RA Retno Hastijanti, MT (Architecture UNTAG Surabaya /Ir. Kemal Taruc, MT (UNTAG Surabaya Resilience Institute)

Promotion and Monitoring

The event will be promoted on social media channels by the University of 17 Agustus 1945 Surabaya and the University 17 Agustus 1945 Samarinda network.
Following the event, a feature story will be uploaded to the university website promoted on social media.
A survey will be shared with all participants, following the seminar to measure its impact and build future opportunities for collaboration.


Event City and Country
Surabaya, Indonesia
Event Date