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AKDC accepts Tamayouz Mohamed Makiya Prize at ceremony in Amman

Michael Toler and Akram Ogaily with the award. Photo by Tamayouz Excellence Awards

On December 8 at a ceremony in Amman, Jordan, Michael A, Toler, Interim Program Head and Archnet Content Manager, accepted the Mohamed Makiya Prize of the Tamayouz Excellence Awards on behalf of the Aga Khan Documentation Center at MIT.”

Several hundred people attended the ceremony hosted by the Iraqi Business Council in Jordan (IBC Jordan) under the patronage of H.E. Dr Omar Al-Razzaz, the Prime Minister of Jordan, at the Grand Millennium Hotel in Amman.

The Mohamed Makiya Prize is an annual prize open to both individuals and organizations who promoted, encouraged, campaigned or influenced directly or indirectly the advancement of architecture and the built environment in the Middle East between 2015 and 2017.

The award was presented by renowned arhitect and planner Akram Ogaily, after which Dr. Toler gave a one minute speech in which he thanked the Tamayouz Awards judges and organizers, as well the staff, supporters, donors, and friends of the Aga Khan Documentation Center, MIT Libraries. The speech was an abbreviated version of the text below.

Other awards presented included the Lifetime Achievement Award presented to Iraqi Architect Maath Munir; Women of Outstanding Achievement Award presented to Palestinian architects Suad Amiry, the winner, and Nadia Habash, who was highly commended; and the Rifat Chadirji Prize presented to Brooks Murray Architects for their design entry for the Baghdad Design Centre Competition.

Founded by Ahmed Al-Mallak in 2012, Tamayouz Excellence Award is an independent initiative with no political affiliation with the of advancing architecture academically and professionally. The Award is dedicated to supporting aspirational and transformative projects tackling local and global challenges, informed by a holistic understanding of context.

Mohamed Makiya Prize, 2018 Tamayouz Excellence Awards Michael A. Toler, PhD, December 8, 201

Acceptance Speech
Thank you to the Tamayouz Awards, its sponsors, and the judges for this award. It is a great honor to be selected, especially given the standards of excellence set by the others on the shortlist. The Tamayouz Awards as an ensemble show a real sense vision by giving awards that not only honor practitioners and established names, but by also putting such great focus on training future architects, and by honoring people who document and celebrate architectural achievements.

The Aga Khan Documentation Center at MIT (AKDC@MIT) is a research center supporting teaching of, scholarship on, and the practice of architecture, urban planning, environmental and landscape design and related fields. With a focus on predominantly Muslim societies, it was established along with the Aga Khan Program for Islamic Architecture (AKPIA) at MIT and Harvard through a gift from His Highness the Aga Khan.

Though established to support the research and teaching activities of AKPIA, AKDC has an equally important outward facing mission, with an emphasis on open access and open source dissemination tools to make materials available as broadly as possible. Credit goes to the Aga Khan Trust for Culture, AKPIA, and the MIT Libraries for supporting that mission.

It is a particularly meaningful honor to receive an award named for Dr. Mohamed Makiya, not only because he was a great architect and intellectual, but also because his archive was the first received by AKDC. It was the generosity of Dr. Makiya and his son Kanan Makiya, as well as the vision of Dr. Sharon Smith, then AKDC Program Head, and Dr. Nasser Rabbat, AKPIA Director, that established AKDC as a trustworthy custodian of valuable archives; a steward that would not be content to simply to catalog, preserve and lock away artifacts, but one with an explicit foundational vision to share those materials with the world. In this way, AKDC enables new scholarship and acts of creation.

AKDC has offices in Rotch Library at MIT, but it is fundamentally a collaborative endeavor. So on behalf of all of my wonderful current colleagues Dr. Matt Saba and Betsy Baldwin, former Program Head Dr. Sharon Smith, my former colleague Andrea Schuler and of all our donors, contributors, supporters, users, friends, please accept our profound gratitude for this award. AKDC is truly honored.

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