Enhancing Resilience: Integrating Local Wisdom and Vernacular Construction

16 May 2024

The webinar will explore how the synergy between indigenous knowledge and vernacular construction elevates community resilience, safeguarding against disasters, and promoting sustainable development.

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Event Information

7 June 2024, 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm (UK time)

This event is free and open to all.

Where: online (register using the link below)

Zoom Registration Link

The talk underscores the effectiveness of risk reduction approaches that require minimal change within impacted communities for successful safety and self-recovery. We advocate for respecting existing local designs and materials while integrating scientifically derived techniques to enhance disaster resilience. We highlight our experience in applying technical analyses to vernacular and green construction methods for long-term post-disaster housing solutions. Our methodology involves observing and documenting local skills, comparing them with scientifically acquired practices, and facilitating knowledge sharing. This approach respects local skills, culture, and the environment while promoting economic development and climate adaptation. Examples include seismic-resistant bamboo construction in Ecuador, earth construction techniques in Afghanistan, and prioritizing self-repair in Türkiye. We also discuss nature-based approaches in Kinshasa, CAR, and Lima, where indigenous knowledge has been leveraged for flood risk mitigation.


Adriana Navarro-Sertich 

Miyamoto International

Adriana Navarro-Sertich is a leading figure in Miyamoto's urban resilience and rehabilitation practice. An architect and urban planner, she specializes in participatory planning, urban informality, passive design strategies, and sustainable materials. Her expertise encompasses disaster response and long-term development, including participatory urban visioning and climate-resilient planning. With a career spanning the private sector, academia, and the UN, Adriana has worked in over 20 countries, employing interdisciplinary and community-focused approaches. As Associate Principal at Miyamoto, she spearheads climate change adaptation planning, working in Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the Caribbean, emphasizing a 'whole settlements approach' for disaster risk reduction and resilience. Adriana holds a Master’s degree in Architecture and a Master’s in City and Regional Planning from UC Berkeley, where she was the 2010 Branner Fellow. She also earned a Bachelor of Science in Architecture with honors from the University of Virginia and holds a certificate in Organizational Leadership from Harvard Business.