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The jury highlights the humanitarian value of Ban’s sustainable architecture

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The jury of the Princess of Asturias Award for Concord 2022, awarded to the Japanese architect Shigeru Ban, has highlighted his charitable contribution by providing shelter in decent conditions to people in precarious situations derived from social and natural emergencies or conflict situations.

In the opinion of the court, chaired by the Asturian chief executive, Adrián Barbón, and made up of members of the Princess Foundation Board of Trustees, their work, “always guided by humanitarian values ​​and with the contribution of volunteers, offers an example of sustainable architecture with the use of recycled materials that has earned wide international recognition”.

Shigeru Ban (Tokyo, 1957), known for using unusual materials such as paper or cardboard in his buildings and for his “solidarity architecture” for the homeless, is the founder of the NGO “Voluntary Architects Network” (VAN), with the who has built homes in disaster-affected areas in Haiti, Japan, China, India, Turkey, Italy and the Philippines.

Last year, the Asturian chef José Andrés and the NGO World Central Kitchen (WCK) that he founded to supply food in areas affected by natural disasters were recognized with this award, and in previous editions, Spanish health workers were distinguished for his work in the face of the covid-19 pandemic, the Polish city of Gdansk, the European Union, Manos Unidas, Unicef, the heroes of Fukushima, Adolfo Suárez, Hussein of Jordan and Stephen Hawking.

During the last few weeks, the Arts awards have been awarded to the cantaora Carmen Linares and the dancer and choreographer María Pagés; Communication and Humanities, to the Polish journalist Adam Michnik; the one for Social Sciences, to the Mexican archaeologist Eduardo Matos Moctezuma, and the one for Sports, to the Foundation and the Refugee Olympic Team.

The playwright Juan Mayorga, with that of Letters; former sailor and British social entrepreneur Ellen MacArthur, with International Cooperation, and artificial intelligence experts Geoffrey Hinton, Yann LeCun, Yoshua Bengio and Demis Hassabis, with Scientific and Technical Research.

Each award is endowed with a reproduction of a sculpture designed by Joan Miró -the award’s representative symbol-, a diploma, a badge and 50,000 euros.

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