Adding to a name as illustrious as that of architecture, the emergency genitive, and accompanying the resulting phrase with the expression human rights, will surely surprise more than one. Let us clarify, therefore, some fundamental notions in this article, first of many.

Who are we?

Emergency Architecture & Human Rights (EAHR) is a not-for-profit organization, which has started its work a couple of decades ago simultaneously in Copenhagen, Santiago-Chile and Venice, gathering architects, social scientists and artists from different cultures and countries.

The team of EAHR has more than 20 years of experience working in accordance with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UN Paris 1948) and since 2015 with the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

The aim of this presentation, followed by other articles, is to describe and communicate the EAHR strategy and focus areas for the upcoming years. The EAHR management, which is responsible for the execution of the strategy, is aiming at strengthening and improving its team and organizational activities. As the organization is growing, so is the management demand, as a consequence, its priorities, focus energy and resources and operations. This ensures that employees and other stakeholders are working toward common goals.

EAHR works has received several recognitions:

  • The Biennale of Chile 2017 (Valparaíso)
  • Building of the year 2018 (
  • Aga Khan Nomination 2018
  • Global Award for Sustainable Architecture 2019 (Paris)


After the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake, and series of catastrophic tsunamis that followed, the team behind EAHR recognized that the profession of architect had forgotten the most vulnerable people of the world and the significant impact architecture could have on building resilience and stimulating development before, and especially, after emergencies.

Starting from 2004, we have conducted more than 25 workshops on architecture in humanitarian emergencies, at different universities in Asia, Europe, Africa and South America. Furthermore, our team has realized different humanitarian construction projects in Europe, Africa, the Middle East and South America an Asia.

What for?

EAHR believes that Architecture is a Human Right.

We build resilience in people and local communities by implementing projects and programs that are relevant for the fight against poverty and inequality. EAHR believes in democratizing leadership in society where inclusion, openness and transparency are the base for development: EAHR has tolerance zero policy for corruption and seeks to promote transparency at all levels.

EAHR’s goal is to merge architecture and Human Rights through projects, research in academic fields. EAHR is leader and a world reference organization in the field of Architecture & Human Rights. Our vision is, again, to use architecture to improve life quality, resilience, and defend human rights for the most vulnerable communities around the planet.

In 2015 together with the University of Venice IUAV, EAHR has created the postgraduate master “Emergency & Resilience.”

To Whom?

By using architecture as a tool for social and environmental change, EAHR works to empower the most vulnerable groups and increase community’s resilience to inequality, humanitarian crisis and violation of human rights and try to influence local authorities to follow these targets.

Our mission is:

  • to improve quality of life by generating social, economic and environmental improvement through architecture implementations
  • to increase resilience by using local material, cultural architecture and co- creative processes
  • to defend human rights by advocating vulnerable communities and local organizations and governments by teaching professionals on the topic of Architecture & Human Rights

Our physical works in different places and our homepage, are the link and windows where we talk with the world around us.

EAHR engages communities by using participatory methods to generate social, economic and environmental progress.

Today EAHR focuses its activities through humanitarian- and development programs and projects, postgraduate master programs and trainings in the field of Cultural Architecture and Social Matters.

And our methodologies are: Cultural Architecture and Social Matters. They are the ways to understand the context and express our intentions, before we start building.

Co-design and co-creation with people and institutions in their physical environment represent the key to democratize the fieldwork. We believe our surroundings and the built environment are embodied with potentials that matter for community resilience and personal development. We foster change through working with people’s abilities and their perception to create better, more agile, and positive relations with their surroundings and themselves. Hence, we activate local resources and interests because we care about local dreams, memories and possibilities.

In this holistic approach we enact social interaction and positive path in, and between, the communities with which we work together.