Adnan Zillur Morshed

THE GRUDGING URBANIST

Adnan Zillur Morshed, PhD, is an architect, architectural historian, urbanist, and public intellectual. He is a professor of architecture and architectural history at the Catholic University of America in Washington, DC, and executive director of the Centre for Inclusive Architecture and Urbanism at BRAC University. Morshed received his Ph.D. and Master’s in architecture from MIT, and BArch from Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology, where he also taught. He was a 2018 TEDxFoggyBottom speaker at George Washington University. He is the author of multiple books; among them, Impossible Heights: Skyscrapers, Flight, and the Master Builder (University Minnesota Press, 2015), Oculus: A Decade of Insights into Bangladeshi Affairs (University Press Limited, 2012), DAC, Dhaka in 25 Buildings (Altrim Publishers, Barcelona, 2017), and River Rhapsody: A Museum of Rivers and Canals (BRAC University, 2018).

November 1, 2020
November 1, 2020

SDGs, the tyranny of sameness, and a lesson for World Cities Day

Yesterday was World Cities Day (WCD). In 2013, the United Nations General Assembly designated October 31 as WCD to build global awareness of the challenges that cities around the world face.

October 31, 2020
October 31, 2020

SDGs, the tyranny of sameness, and a lesson for World Cities Day

The world’s urban future is full of challenges. But one of the greatest among them is a simple but profound one: the universalisation of urban problems and their generic solutions.

October 27, 2020
October 27, 2020

A looming tragedy in the University of Dhaka’s centennial celebration

Is this the right way to celebrate the centennial of the University of Dhaka in 2021? Like many of my colleagues in Bangladesh and around the world, I was horrified to learn that the university...

September 16, 2020
September 16, 2020

Discrimination by design

I was reading a harrowing report in the New York Times that revealed startling data about how federal officials in the United States during the 1930s demarcated or “redlined” certain areas of...

July 21, 2020
July 21, 2020

To remove or not to remove?

Lincoln Park is our community hub on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. Just a block away from where we have lived for nearly two decades, it is a magnificent swath of urban green, within walking...

June 16, 2020
June 16, 2020

How can Dhaka become more resilient to future pandemics?

Cities have generally been the epicentres of the devastation caused by Covid-19, fuelling debates around the world on how to make cities more resilient against future pandemics.

May 23, 2020
May 23, 2020

Not rewarding honesty is promoting dishonesty

It is hard not to notice the frozen posture of BUET engineer MD Delwoar Hossain’s murdered body on the bank of the Turag river.

May 8, 2020
May 8, 2020

Density is not the problem – lack of public health and social justice is

In America, one of the politically charged reactions to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic has been the denigration of urban population density.

April 6, 2020
April 6, 2020

Adieu, Architect Bashirul Haq

A Bangladeshi pioneer departed this world on Saturday, April 4, 2020. Architect Bashirul Haq was a poet who crafted his poems with the language of brick, green, light, air, and tactility.

March 20, 2020
March 20, 2020

Bangabandhu and the Bengal Delta

It is fascinating that Bangabandhu began his Unfinished Memoirs (published in 2012) with an existential characterisation of his birthplace in geographic relationship to a river: the Madhumati river...