Out of Water Conference: Sustaining Development in Arid Climates

Taking place from April 1-2, 2011 at the John H. Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape and Design at the University of Toronto, this conference will offer a forum for water experts in the fields of design, engineering, natural and social sciences to identify specific disciplinary methodologies and areas of applied and theoretical intersections with respect to the technical and sociopolitical implications of water scarcity in arid regions.

Twenty-two established and emergent designers, scholars and scientists will be brought together not only to discuss the multivalent facets of ‘water technologies’ within specific hydro-political contexts in arid regions and varying definitions of water scarcity, but also to evaluate the efficacy of currently implemented solutions.

The disciplines represented in this conference include environmental law and water policy, public health, agronomy, hydrology, building science, geography, business strategies, civil engineering, landscape architecture, architecture and urban design.

There are numerous factors causing water scarcity worldwide, including climatological, environmental and anthropogenic factors such as over-consumption, failing infrastructure, unsustainable agricultural practices and contamination. The challenges posed by water scarcity are currently most acute in arid and underdeveloped regions. Research in these regions should prove to be relevant to those interested in the future role that water will come to play in shaping both our built environments and our political and economic arenas. Water issues will likely come to play an increasingly important role in instigating academic and professional collaborations and fostering meaningful political dialogues.

This event is open to the public. As seating is limited, advance registration is encouraged. Advance registration and tickets can be purchased online at www.uofttix.ca/. The fee for U of T faculty and students is $5, and $20 for others.

Speakers include: Antoine Picon, Harvard Graduate School of Design; Alon Tal, Ben Gurion University of the Negev, Mitrani Department of Desert Ecology; James L. Wescoat, Jr., School of Architecture+Planning, Massachusetts Institute of Technology; Hadley Arnold, Arid Lands Institute, Woodbury University; Gini Lee, Queensland University of Technology; Kai Babetzki and Matthias Schuler, Transsolar KlimaEngineering; Kristin Malone, Center for Architecture Science & Ecology (CASE); Aziza Chaouni and Liat Margolis, Daniels Faculty; Eilon Adar, Ben Gurion University of the Negev, Zuckerberg Institute for Water; Camille Dow Baker, Centre for Affordable Water and Sanitation Technology (CAWST); Virginie Picon-Lefebvre, Ecole Nationale Superieure d’Architecture Paris-Malaquais; Drew Wensley, Moriyama & Teshima and Alan Travers, Buro Happold; Walter H. Kehm, LANDinc.; Farid Esmaeil, X-Architects; Lennart Woltering, GFA Consulting Group GmbH and Dov Pasternak, International Crops Research Institute for the Semi Arid Tropics (ICRISAT); Anthony M. Watanabe, Innovolve Group, Canada; Felipe Correa, Somatic Collaborative; Fadi Masoud, Harvard Graduate School of Design; and Byron Stigge, Buro Happold, New York.

For profiles of all the speakers and additional information, please visit www.daniels.utoronto.ca/outofwater.