Athabasca University

Athabasca University

Athabasca, AB, CA


Africa Defines Architecture: Nmadili Okwumabua

By RAICCentreforArchitecture
Oct 6, '20 1:02 AM EST

Nmadili Okwumabua, Founder, CPDI Africa The Global Studio for African Centered Architecture

Date/Time: Thursday, September 17, 2020 at 9:00am – 10:30am MT
Venue: Online Video Conference


Believing that the development of our built environment should be as it has always been, a collaborative effort between the community members and designated master builders, Nmadili Okwumabua will deliver a ground breaking online lecture on the evolution and transformation of African culture, aesthetics, spirituality, materials, design philosophies, and the contemporary translation of these elements in today’s built environment. Creating a new pedagogy for teaching African centred architecture in the process, the lecture will chronicle emerging CPDI Africa narratives for development, supplicating collaboration from the design community at large for the accomplishment of its vision - to source tried and true African design philosophies and practices in sustainable design, science and technology, for the development of a holistic and eco friendly global built environment.

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Nmadili Okwumabua is a Professor of African Architecture and Urban Design and the founder of the Community Planning and Design Initiative Africa (CPDI Africa). Her passion for design is rooted in a vision where communities in Africa and the Diaspora are developed with new architectural languages that are Culturally and are Environmentally Sustainable. Nmadili attended the University of Tennessee and Georgia State University, where she pursued her undergraduate studies in architecture and urban studies. She holds a Masters degree in African Studies from Clark Atlanta University, where her research centred on the evolution of Nigerian modern vernacular architecture in the works of Master builder Demas Nwoko. She is a licensed Realtor in the state of Georgia and Certified Property Manager with Broll CBRE South Africa.

In 1999, she founded Southern Sahara USA, a design consultancy service specializing in the research and development of this new architecture. In 2013, she launched CPDI Africa, the culture-inspired initiative that promotes these new architectural languages though design competitions, lecture series, workshops, architecture exhibitions and international global studios for teaching African centred architecture. Cultivating a built environment career that has spanned over 25 years, Nmadili Okwumabua lives in Atlanta Georgia and Abuja Nigeria, where she continues to offer international consultancy services in urban design and real estate asset management.


Participants who attend the full 90-minute session will be granted a Certificate of Completion to apply for professional development credits recognized by the following institutes.

  • Alberta Association of Architects (AAA) | 1.5 Structured Learning Hour
  • Ontario Association of Architects (OAA) | 1.5 Structured Learning Hour
  • Cape Institute for Architecture (CIfA) | 0.25 Category 1 CPD Credits
  • Gauteng Institute for Architecture (GIFA) | 0.25 Category 1 CPD Credits
  • KwaZulu Natal Institute for Architecture (SAIA-KZN) | 0.25 Category 1 CPD Credits

For Inquiries:

Dr. Henry Tsang
Assistant Professor, RAIC Centre for Architecture, Athabasca University