The INDE.Summit is Coming: Topics Announced!

  •   6 April 2021

2021 is a year for learning and evolving, of looking forward and moving ahead of the curve. This year, for the first time, this learning will be delivered to you through the INDE programme, which has expanded to include the INDE.Summit. Coming to you for its inaugural season this August, the INDE.Summit adds to the Indo-Pacific’s most progressive award initiative, where excellence is not just celebrated but explored and analysed.

The INDE.Summit will be a full day symposium, an event comprising four, CPD-Accredited discussions which will bring together a spectrum of regional and local speakers to explore how the Indo-Pacific region’s architects and designers are responding to and innovating in the face of critical global and local challenges.

So mark your calendar for Thursday August 5th, where the INDE.Summit will be held in Sydney and broadcast live around the globe. Whether you’ll be attending in person or joining virtually, get ready for a knowledge-charged day that will deliver your education differently, using interaction and inspiration to bring you a broader understanding of diversity and a stronger position from which to propel forward under the gaze of the world.


“[It is imperative] to see architecture provide innovative solutions to complex scenarios. It’s imperative for the architecture from the region to be sensitive to the environment and to be designed carefully with the available resources, with empathy.”

– Palinda Kannangara, Founder, Palinda Kannangara Architects (Sri Lanka) and INDE.Awards 2020 Ambassador


INDE.Summit 2021 Topics

The INDE.Summit will present a series of panel discussions which have been specially curated and developed for our industry and our region. Progressive, insightful and contextually placed, each session will form as part of the wider 2021 theme: ‘Develop/Underdevelop’.

‘Development’ often goes unquestioned as a force that will deliver advancement, value and growth. But as the realities of climate, equity and health challenges play out locally, regionally and globally, it’s critical that we deeply consider what sort of advancement, value and growth we really need in our part of the world.

Within an overarching regional context of rapid change, the INDE.Summit will explore leading examples of deeply rooted, deeply relevant and deeply equitable approaches to architecture and design for the benefit of enhanced regional awareness, understanding and strategy.

The Housing Balance: Design, Community & Economy in the Indo-Pacific

Housing presents universal challenges as well as contextual ones related to migration and urbanisation patterns, affordability and financing, culture and social norms, climate, construction modes and adaptability. The ingredients of resilient communities and environments around the Indo-Pacific region can be studied from multiple angles to find pathways to housing that achieves much more than real-estate-driven concerns. Housing that sensitively and successfully fuses top-down and bottom-up concerns is possible in many contexts. This session will dissect some of the region’s leading examples.

Manifesting Culture, Place & Identity in the Indo-Pacific

The vernacular is often complementary to sustainable architecture and design. Yet in many cases these days, its manifestation tends toward the gestural. Opportunities for deeper relevance and benefit are overlooked. Similarly, sanitised and packaged versions of heritage, as well as dogmatic preservations of the past, each present their own limitations. Authentic understandings of what the vernacular has to offer the contemporary built environment can positively impact ideas of culture and how people live. This session will explore the lived experience – as opposed to the thin iconography – of culture, place and identity as manifested through a variety of project types in a spectrum of regional locations.

Finding & Financing Sustainability: Indo-Pacific Built Environment Case Studies

What drives a strong vision for holistic sustainability in a project? How is it financed? What supports and threatens its implementation? The answers and the very framing of the questions will vary with place, budget and regulation, but will certainly allude to how the various players in the built environment industry value sustainability in all its forms. This session will seek out positive examples of sustainable development as a means of finding lessons that could benefit the regional industry as a whole.

Ecosystems of Commercial Space in the Indo-Pacific

Globally, strategies from one sector of commercial space design are crossing over to influence others. This is creating new opportunities and avenues for the owners, designers and users of spaces. Though many of the drivers of this strategic fluidity are borderless, the  cultural inflections of particular places, and the real estate and planning contexts at play, can vary considerably and influence the outcomes. This session will investigate, through regional examples, how global currents are manifesting in the Indo-Pacific and survey the lessons that can be shared between us.


“No longer is our region about mimicking what is done in Europe and North America. Being part of international design and architecture festivals over the past few years, it’s clear that the world is now looking to our region for inspiration.”

– Ryan Russell & Byron George, Directors, Russell & George (Australia) and INDE.Awards 2020 Ambassadors


The world is watching the Indo-Pacific region. A united architecture and design industry is a confident and powerful one – one that is ready to respond with wisdom, agility and innovation to the immense challenges of today.

Don’t miss this unique opportunity for dialogue that spans geographies, climates and cultures.


5 August 2021, Sydney

The Summit day program will precede the INDE.Awards 2021 Gala (evening, 5 August 2021, Sydney). More information to be announced soon.

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