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GSD students collaborate with Kabul University in Afghanistan to confront the most extreme conditions of urbanisation

1 February 2021

Situated architecture and design requires engagement with local stakeholders who can articulate the nuances of these and other foundational issues. The Harvard University Graduate School of Design's (GSD) move to digital teaching due to Covid-19 only exacerbated that need. GSD students collaborated with the Aga Khan Agency for Habitat (AKAH), which recently began work in Afghanistan. "With the help of AKAH, we accessed more stakeholders remotely than we ever would have if we had just visited the site," a student says. A crucial - and perhaps the most special - relationship AKAH helped facilitate was a partnership between the GSD students and both faculty and students from Kabul University. The Afghan institution selected eight students to partner with their Harvard peers, which allowed the latter to have collaborators directly embedded in the area.