Roll of honour
The culture and city forum during the Business of Design Week features eminent designers and architects. They include:
Scheeren has designed some of the world's most daring and exciting buildings, including Singapore's The Interlace, the MahaNakhon in Bangkok, the Prada Epicenter stores in New York and Los Angeles, and the CCTV and TVCC headquarters in Beijing. He was with the Office for Metropolitan Architecture (OMA) for 15 years before leaving last year to launch B?ro Ole Scheeren in London, Hong Kong and Beijing. He is involved in a design for Shenzhen's new city centre, a 250-metre-high tower in Kuala Lumpur and a gigantic mixed-use building for the centre of Chongqing. He is a visiting professor at the University of Hong Kong.
The co-founder of architecture firm Sauerbruch Hutton is a leader in issues of sustainability in architecture and urbanism, and is recognised for creating buildings with sensual spaces and signature facades. The firm is known for the GSW Headquarters in Berlin, the Federal Environmental Agency in Dessau and the Museum for the Brandhorst Collection in Munich. Sauerbruch Hutton projects have received six RIBA and two AIA awards. Hutton's inspiration is based on her philosophy of giving each and every design character and individuality, and her style is noted for its synthesis of colour and fluid, curved forms.
The Danish architect is the head of BIG (Bjarke Ingels Group), a Copenhagen-based group of architects, designers and thinkers with a reputation for mixing the practical and the playful. On the mainland, Ingels has achieved something of a cult status for his stunning creations, such as the Danish pavilion at the 2010 World Expo and the prized 'Ren' People's Building proposal for Shanghai. The award-winning architect believes that buildings need not only be naively avant-garde or predictable and boring. They can be fun and functional. He aims to create socially, economically and environmentally perfect places as a practical objective.
Spencer de Grey
The senior partner of Foster + Partners shares design responsibility for all projects in the office as joint head of design. The range of projects he has overseen include: the Commerzbank Headquarters in Frankfurt, the Law Faculty at Cambridge University, the Great Court at the British Museum, the Boston Museum of Fine Arts and the competition-winning scheme for the National Portrait Gallery courtyard at the Smithsonian Institution, Washington. He is chairman of the Building Centre Trust and chairman of the Cambridge University School of Architecture Advisory Board. He was elected a Royal Academician in December 2008.
Known for his innovative work with paper, Ban's ideas are effective in providing emergency housing for disaster victims. He initiated Voluntary Architects Network, a non-profit group which produces temporary structures for emergency victims, including those in the Kobe earthquake in 1995. His paper-frame school houses were also used after the Sichuan earthquake. This earned Ban the Thomas Jefferson Medal in architecture. His emergency DIY refugee shelters have been used by the UN High Commission for Refugees. After this year's earthquake and tsunami in Japan, Ban built partitions for victims living in shelter to avoid distress from a lack of privacy.