Books


Professor Ashraf Salama has authored and co-edited 9 books on education and pedagogy in architecture and urbanism, theory, criticism, and assessment in architecture, and emerging cities in the Middle East. His books were published in Germany, United Kingdom, Italy, Switzerland, Egypt, and the United States. 

This page displays outlines of his books with links to relevant websites, reviews, and other related information.

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Spatial Design Education: New Directions for Pedagogy in Architecture and Beyond
Author: Ashraf M. Salama
Date of Publishing: February 2015
Publisher: Routledge, London, United Kingdom
ISBN  9781472422873

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Click here for an interview on "Arch .Ed . Podcast" by James B. Brown

Design education in architecture and allied disciplines is the cornerstone of design professions that contribute to shaping the built environment of the future. In this book, design education is dealt with as a paradigm whose evolutionary processes, underpinning theories, contents, methods, tools, are questioned and critically examined. It features a comprehensive discussion on design education with a focus on the design studio as the backbone of that education and the main forum for creative exploration and interaction, and for knowledge acquisition, assimilation, and reproduction. Through international and regional surveys, the striking qualities of design pedagogy, contemporary professional challenges and the associated sociocultural and environmental needs are identified. Building on twenty-five years of research and explorations into design pedagogy in architecture and urban design, this book authoritatively offers a critical analysis of a continuously evolving profession, its associated societal processes and the way in which design education reacts to their demands. Matters that pertain to traditional pedagogy, its characteristics and the reactions developed against it in the form of pioneering alternative studio teaching practices. Advances in design approaches and methods are debated including critical inquiry, empirical making, process-based learning, and Community Design, Design-Build, and Live Project Studios. Innovative teaching practices in lecture-based and introductory design courses are identified and characterized including inquiry-based, active and experiential learning. These investigations are all interwoven to elucidate a comprehensive understanding of contemporary design education in architecture and allied disciplines. A wide spectrum of teaching approaches and methods is utilized to reveal a theory of a ‘trans-critical’ pedagogy that is conceptualized to shape a futuristic thinking about design teaching. Lessons learned from techniques and mechanisms for accommodation, adaptation, and implementation of a ‘trans-critical’ pedagogy in education are conceived to invigorate a new student-centered, evidence-based design culture sheltered in a wide variety of learning settings in architecture and beyond.

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 ‘This is indeed an inspiring and thought provoking contribution to the field of design pedagogy in its fullest sense. Calling for new forms of pedagogy, the argument for civic engagement, critical inquiry, and reflective design practices is elucidated to reflect emerging understandings of design education. With substantial international experience, the author offers an authoritative account of spatial design pedagogy with a focus on architectural and urban design education, covering a diverse range of topics in a wide variety of contexts. Tracing evolutionary theories and approaches of education from the second half of the 20th century to the present is a commendable aspect of this work. This is a must-have book for both design students and built environment professionals, but most importantly, it is essential reading for every design educator worldwide.’ Halina Dunin-Woyseth, Oslo School of Architecture, Norway

 ‘Spatial Design Education: New Directions for Pedagogy in Architecture and Beyond is a proactive book that transparently presents promising approaches to tap into latent potentials and exciting opportunities in teaching architecture. Salama’s candid review and analysis importantly fills a gap in literature on architecture pedagogy. The book is comprehensive, critical and experimental and very much analogous to the way we all want to teach architecture.’ Tammy Gaber, Laurentian University School of Architecture, Canada

'No other profession has undergone as dramatic a transformation in the past decade as architecture. In this well-researched, intelligent, and provocative examination of the history, current state, and future prospects of architectural pedagogy on a global scale, Ashraf Salama challenges us to both broaden and deepen the debate about how professional education might, indeed must, change.' Michael J. Crosbie, University of Hartford, USA

'With the voice of an experienced educator on the frontline of architectural education, Ashraf Salama offers an audacious yet thoroughly researched examination of design pedagogies and ethics in a changing world. More than just a condemnation of outmoded studio culture, this book presents insightful accounts of both historic development as well as past and emerging innovations in design education. An extraordinary sourcebook for design educators and students.' Jeff Hou, University of Washington, USA

 ‘Building on a rigorous and critical examination of a wide spectrum of architectural design pedagogies over time, Ashraf Salama constructs a convincing argument for the need for a design pedagogy that is more responsive to today’s social and environmental demands. Salama’s well-articulated description of a multi-layered “trans-critical” pedagogy that promotes a democratic and inclusive theory of education couldn’t be more timely. This book is ground breaking in its attempt to identify pedagogical approaches to the challenges faced in the profession by the changing role of the architect and is invaluable for researchers, practitioners, graduate students and educators in architecture.’ Karen Keddy, Ball State University, USA

'Due to EU directives, UK architectural education is facing imminent change - specifically, to become shorter, more affordable, and more practice integrated - so that it matches the programs offered by its EU University counterparts/competitors. What Professor Salama's book offers is a methods statement - an invaluable resource book for educators needing to rethink their curricula to meet this demand for change. It provides passionate educators, participation-inclined practitioners and engaged students with practical inspiration from a range of excellent case studies that demonstrate experimental, spatially and socially innovative pedagogies.' Harriet Harriss, Oxford Brookes University, United Kingdom

'As a professor who constantly looks to unlock the doors of innovative thought and practice in the studio-based classroom, this book, Spatial Design Education by Ashraf Salama, is the master key. Salama creates the convincing argument for pedagogical change and then systematically evaluates examples of current evolving paradigms that are making that change happen. If you want to be part of that change then this book should be your guide.' Jeffrey Haase, The Ohio State University, USA

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Architecture Beyond Criticism: Expert Judgment and Performance Evaluation
Editors: Wolfgang F.E. Preiser, Aaron Davis, Ashraf M. Salama, and Andrea Hardy
Date of Publishing: December 2014
Publisher: Routledge, London, United Kingdom.
ISBN  978-0415725330

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For the first time, this book demonstrates that the two paradigms of architectural criticism and performance evaluation can only co-exist but complement each other in the assessment of built works.  As architecture takes more principled stances worldwide, from environmental sustainability to social, cultural, and economic activism, this book is an examination of the roles of perceived and measured quality in architecture. By exploring in tandem both subjective traditional architectural criticism and environmental design and performance evaluation and its objective evaluation criteria, the book argues that both methodology and outcomes can achieve a comprehensive assessment of quality in architecture.  Curated by a global editorial team, the book includes:
- Contributions from international architects and critics based in the UK, USA, Brazil, France, Qatar, Egypt, New Zealand, China, Japan and Germany
- Global case studies which illustrate both perspectives addressed by the book and comparative analyses of the findings.
- A six part organization which includes introductions and conclusions from the editors, to help guide the reader and further illuminate the contributions.

By presenting a systematic approach to assessing building performance, design professionals will learn how to improve building design and performance with major stakeholders in mind, especially end users/occupants.

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 ‘Imagine if architects were trained to respond dynamically to their critics? Imagine if architecture critics practiced with sufficient rigor to be taken seriously by architects? This book is a brave and original attempt to bring together two antagonistic cultures. It points the way to a better-performing future—for critics, for architects, and for those of us, all of us, who would benefit from a built world capable of learning from the lessons of the present.’ Philip Nobel, Editorial Director, SHoP Architects

'This is a provocative and fascinating examination of the dissolving boundaries between architectural criticism and building performance evaluation, from the historic roots of each to their evolving, sometimes contentious, relationship today. The international roster of contributing architects, planners, critics, and academics offer compelling arguments and case studies that should be fodder for debate in many spheres for many years to come.' Kristen Richards, Hon. AIA, Hon. ASLA, Founder and Editor, ArchNewsNow.com, and Editor, Oculus magazine

 ‘Powerful building design tools and methodologies, coupled with advanced construction technologies, have enabled architects to create buildings increasingly complex in form and function. Yet assessment of architecture, especially in public media, remains highly subjective and qualitative, focused mostly on visual, contextual and historical attributes. Evidence-based evaluation and objective measurement of building performance - functional, technical, environmental, sociological, economic, and political - are rare in critical discourse. The diverse contributors to Architecture Beyond Criticism rigorously address these contrasting assessment paradigms and, often using place and project case studies, show why architectural criticism must become more comprehensive. Any professional who judges architecture - media critics, historians, design professors, practicing architects, and building engineers - should read this insightful, well researched book.’ Roger K. Lewis, a fellow of the American Institute of Architects, is a practicing architect and urban planner; a Professor Emeritus of Architecture at the University of Maryland College Park; and an author and journalist

'Critique has long been considered a vital force in driving architectural excellence. Yet few educators understand the differences between good, actionable critical feedback and creatively limiting, negative feedback. This book invites both established educators and practitioner critics to consider some of the tacit agendas that influence design critique, and the role it has to play in shaping both the values and practices of tomorrows profession.' Dr Harriet Harris, Principal Lecturer, Oxford Brookes University

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Demystifying Doha: On Architecture and Urbanism in an Emerging City
Authors: Ashraf M. Salama and Florian Wiedmann
Date of Publishing: November 2013
Publisher: Routledge, London, United Kingdom
ISBN   978-1409466345

Click here for a review by Samer Bagaeen in Urban Studies

Over the past decade or so, the wealth produced by Qatar's oil and gas exports has generated a construction development boom in its capital city of Doha and the surrounding vicinity. Since the late 1990s, the number of inhabitants has grown from less than 400,000 to more than 1.7 million today. In many respects, Doha is portrayed as an important emerging global capital in the Gulf region, which has been positioning and re-inventing itself on the map of international architecture and urbanism, with a global image of building clusters of glass office towers, as well as cultural and educational facilities.

While focusing on the architectural and planning aspects of Doha's intensive urbanization, this first comprehensive examination of the city sets this within the socio-political and economic context of the wider Arabian Peninsula. 'Demystifying Doha - On Architecture and Urbanism in an Emerging City' features a comprehensive discussion on contemporary architecture and urbanism of Doha as an emerging regional metropolis. It provides a critical analysis of the evolution of architecture and urbanism as products of the contemporary global condition. Issues that pertain to emerging service hubs, decentralised urban governance, integrated urban development strategies, image-making practices, urban identity, the dialectic relations between the city and its society and sustainable urbanism are all examined to elucidate the urban evolution and the contemporary condition of Doha. 'Demystifying Doha - On Architecture and Urbanism in an Emerging City' concludes by suggesting a framework for future studies of the city as well as for investigating the future of similar cities, setting out an agenda for sustainable urban growth, while invigorating the multiple roles urban planners and architects can play in shaping this future. 

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 ‘The authors provide an authoritative account of the development of Doha in the context of the rapid growth of Arabian Gulf cities. The book identifies the social and cultural changes associated with this growth and its positive and negative impact on the city of Doha. Such unbridled growth as seen in Doha can have deleterious consequences as the authors clearly identify. They propose the need for an urban development vision that integrates social, cultural and economic factors. Consequently, this book is a necessary guide for Doha’s decision makers in the public and private sector as well as design and planning educators and professionals. Although Salama and Wiedmann focus on the Arabian Peninsula they develop a unique investigative approach relevant for the study of other regions as well.’ Henry Sanoff, North Carolina State University, USA

‘The book gives a comprehensive overview of the urban and architectural development of the Arabian Peninsula but in particular about the rapid growth of Doha. It offers a profound documentation of the urban structure and environment as well as the architectural forms of the city, while introducing significant knowledge on an area, which is often not well considered by international professionals planning in the metropolis. Salama and Wiedmann concentrate not only on Doha, Qatar and the Arabian Peninsula but also analyze the evolution of architecture and urbanism as products of contemporary global trends in governance, development strategies, image-making and the human encounters with the city. Demystifying Doha is a valuable source for every planner and architect working in Doha as well as those working in neighboring countries of the Arabian Peninsula.’ Albert Speer, Albert Speer & Partner GmbH, Germany

‘Salama and Wiedmann offer a far-reaching examination of the city of Doha within the larger context of the Arabian Peninsula. While their main focus is on the evolution of the city and its morphological transformations, they successfully map such evolution to socio-cultural, economic, and environmental aspects that characterized the growth of the city. Addressing the institutional environment in which decisions are made, the book highlights important aspects of urban governance. Discussing the multifaceted aspects of sustainable urbanism, the authors propose a framework for future investigations in similar contexts. The inclusive nature of the book makes it a necessary reading for policy makers, academics and professionals in architecture and urban planning. This is a great addition to the library of architecture and urbanism in the Middle East.’ Attilio Petruccioli, Qatar University, Qatar and Polytechnic University of Bari, Italy

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Transformative Pedagogy in Architecture and Urbanism
Author: Ashraf M. Salama
Date of Publishing: December 2009
Publisher: Umbau Verlag, Solingen, Germany
ISBN   978-3937954-042

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As a new round of pedagogical dialogue on architecture and urbanism it resets the stage for debating future visions of transformative pedagogy and its impact on design education. This is a forward looking effort that comes to amalgamate concerns, concepts, and practices that Ashraf M. Salama has explored and introduced over a period of two decades. It is about balancing the creative act required for creating responsive environments and the social and environmental responsibilities that should be embedded in this act. It is also about understanding how knowledge is produced, what the components of such knowledge are, and what are the learning processes and social practices that can be used to transmit it. Structured in five chapters the book presents a wide range of innovative and practical methodologies for teaching architectural and urban design. It traces the roots of architectural education and offers several contrasting ideas and strategies of design teaching practices. The book includes five chapters: 1)  A New Theory for Transformative Pedagogy in Architecture and Urbanism  2) The Architect, the Profession, and Society  3) The Conventional Approach to Studio Teaching Practice  4) Against the Conventional Studio Pedagogy 5) Empowering Transformative Pedagogy.
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"...Professor Salama brings here a career's worth of insights into architectural education. Most importantly, his experience spans across many continents and cultures, and is thus extremely valuable for world architecture..." And so we have at hand a vast new resource for adapting the design studio to the real needs of architectural education..." Nikos A. Salingaros, Urbanist and Architectural Theorist, University of Texas at San Antonio, TX, USA.

"... Ashraf Salama aggressively identifies the ritualistic aspects of architectural education that act as constraints to innovation. this is an important book because it probes into the motivations of design educators by placing a mirror before them and allows for a critical examination of the design studio. Dr. Salama paves the way for design educators to openly discuss and debate the delivery system of architectural education and its impact on the future role of the architect..." Henry Sanoff Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Architecture, North Carolina State University, NC, USA.     

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Design Studio Pedagogy: Horizons for the Future
Authors: Ashraf M. Salama and Nicholas Wilkinson (eds.)
Edition: 2007
Publisher: Urban International Press, Gateshead, United Kingdom
ISBN  1-872811-09-04    


This groundbreaking book is a new comprehensive round of debate developed in response to the lack of research on design pedagogy. It provides thoughts, ideas, and experiments of design educators of different generations, different academic backgrounds, who are teaching and conducting research in different cultural contexts. It probes future universal visions within which the needs of future shapers of the built environment can be conceptualized and the design pedagogy that satisfies those needs can be debated. Addressing academics, practitioners, graduate students, and those who make decisions about the educational system over twenty contributors remarkably introduce analytical reflections on their positions and experience. Two invited contributions of. N. John Habraken and Henry Sanoff offer visionary thoughts on their outstanding experience in design pedagogy and research. Structured in five chapters, this book introduces theoretical perspectives on design pedagogy and outlines a number of thematic issues that pertain to critical thinking and decision making; cognitive and teaching/learning styles; community, place, and service learning; and the application of digital technologies in studio teaching practices, all articulated in a conscious endeavor toward the betterment of the built environment.

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Shores of the Mediterranean: Architecture as Language of Peace
Authors: Donatella Mazzoleni, Giuseppe Anzani, Ashraf Salama, Marichela Sepe and Maria Maddalena Simone, (eds)
Date of Publishing: August 2005
Publisher: Edizioni - Intra Moenia, Napoli, Italy
ISBN  88-7421-054-X 


Architecture as Language of Peace was released in August 2005 and published by Edizioni - Intra Moenia, Rome and Naples, Italy. The book is jointly edited by Donatella Mazzoleni, Giuseppe Anzani, Ashraf Salama, Marichela Sepe, and Maria Maddalena Simone. The contents of this book were formulated in the early months of 2003, and brought together two components: the achievements of the Design Laboratory involving 4th and 5th year architecture students at the Universit? di Napoli Federico II in 2001-2003 featuring "Spaces for encounters with Arab culture"; and the proceedings of the 2nd International Seminar on "Identity and Differences in Architecture" held in Naples (Napoli) in December 2002. The book features scholarly articles of academics from Europe, Australia, North Africa, and Middle East. Full papers are published in their original language with abstracts in Arabic and English.

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Architectural Education Today: Cross Cultural Perspectives
Authors: Ashraf M. Salama, Wiliam O"Reilly, and Kaj Noschis  (eds.)
Date of Publishing: 2002
Publisher: Comportements, Lausanne, Switzerland
ISBN  2-940075-07-7  


Recent literature on architectural education notes that there are continuous attempts to massage architectural curricula, to reconfigure the structure of the educational process, to test accepted ideas, and to probe future visions. However, research findings reveal some fundamental disagreements over the goals and objectives, structure and contents, and tools and techniques required for architectural education today. Since education is the cornerstone of the profession and since the approach to and the  content of  that  education is the backbone of architectural practice, it is essential to encounter the subject in its broadest sense and to deal with it as a rich field of research whose knowledge base, content,  and methods can be examined, questioned, and debated. Very few attempts have been developed over the last decade or so by individual scholars to explore the rituals of education in a systematic, visionary, and research-based manner. This indicates the need for more published research and experiments on architectural education and practice. Architectural Education Today is a response to this lack, and is divided into four parts, each of which seeks to provide an exploration of answers to critical questions that pertain to knowledge, professional practice, educational experiments and experiences, and their supporting tools. The intent is not to provide a blue print on how improvement might occur or to offer ready-made or definitive answers, but to further open architectural education to discussion; a subject that continued for years to get sparse attention.

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Human Factors in Environmental Design: An Introductory Approach to Architecture
Author: Ashraf M. Salama
Date of Publishing: 1998
Publisher: The Anglo Egyptian Publications, Cairo, Egypt
ISBN  977-05-1824-7  

Click here to  Download the Book from Academia

In this book, Environmental Design is defined in socio-spatial and socio-behavioral terms. The book presents a whole that aims at the student with little or no experience in environmental design. It emphasizes the strong relationship between human factors and environmental design. The book is based on several ideas and approaches developed by several theorists in the field, with an attempt to simplify those ideas for beginning design students. It includes four chapters: 1) Design, Culture, Architecture, and the Human Science; 2) Design Components of the Built Environment; 3) Designing Built Environments; and 4) Concepts and Principles in Architecture and Urban Design.

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New Trends in Architectural Education: Designing the Design Studio
Author: Ashraf M. Salama
Date of Publishing: 1995
Publisher: Tailored Text, Raleigh, North Carolina, USA
ISBN  0-9647950-0-0


This book presents a wide range of innovative concepts and practical ideas for teaching architectural design. It explores different aspects of studio teaching and what impact they have on the attitudes, skills, methods, and tools of architects. It offers a comparative analysis of contemporary trends that are committed to shaping and identifying studio objectives and processes. The book includes five chapters: 1) Introduction: Problems in the Practice of Architecture; 2) The Architect and Society; 3) Design Education and Studio Work in the Conventional Approach; 4) Revolutionary Concepts for Teaching Architectural Design - Design Studio Teaching Models; and 5) Expanding the Knowledge Base in the Architectural Design Studio.

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...This is an invaluable guide to architectural educators because Dr. Salama has not only captured the body of knowledge about architectural designing and studio teaching and put it in a pithy form but he has also developed a typology of kinds of architectural studios, explaining what experiences each offers the student..." Jon T. Lang, Professor of Architecture and Urban Design, University of New South Wales, Australia