Wael Samhouri is one of the foremost
architects and educators in Syria. He has founded and headed architectural
departments at three universities in Syria. He holds a PhD. from the Royal
College of Art, London, an MSc in Urban Design, Pratt Institute, New York, and
a B.Arch. from Damascus University.
Samhouri has his own private practice in Damascus where he has built numerous
award-winning architectural buildings that have been published in several
prominent magazines.He is the recipient
of the Arab League Architect Award
2000, the Cityscape- Architectural
Review Award, 2004 and again in 2005, and a Cityscape Highly commended prize certificate in 2010 too, for his
design of the Faculty of letters in Damascus University. In 2008 he won First Prize for the Museum & Research Center for Prophetic
Studies in Kuwait. He is now building a computer society centre in Damascus,
and is in the final stages of preparing the plans for building the Prophet’s
Museum (Seerah Center) in Kuwait.
He has travelled and lectured widely and has
been on several international juries. He is on the advisory board of Lonaard: London Art and Architecture Research & Design group in London. He
is also member of several committees and NGOs, most noteworthy being the board
of trustees of the Aga Khan Development Network in Syria. Dr. Samhouri has been
a member of the Aga Khan Award review team for the last three cycles and is now
in the process of founding the Apollodorus of Damascus, an informal body
of Syrian architects promoting architectural discourse and talent in the
Wadi Hanifa Wetlands On-site Review Report, edited by Aga Khan Award for Architecture, 2010.
The On-site Review Report, formerly called the Technical Review, is a document prepared for the Aga Khan Award for Architecture by commissioned independent reviewers who report to the Master Jury about a specific shortlisted project. The reviewers are architectural professionals specialised in various disciplines, including housing, urban planning, landscape design, and restoration. Their task is to examine, on-site, the shortlisted projects to verify project data seek. The reviewers must consider a detailed set of criteria in their written reports, and must also respond to the specific concerns and questions prepared by the Master Jury for each project. This process is intensive and exhaustive making the Aga Khan Award process entirely unique.