The Omrania | CSBE Student Award for Excellence in Architectural Design 2013 Sixth Cycle Announcement


Omrania and Associates (O&A) and the Center for the Study of the Built Environment (CSBE) are happy to announce the sixth cycle of The Omrania l CSBE Student Award for Excellence in Architectural

The Award is intended to honor distinguished architectural graduation projects by students from universities throughout the Arab World.


Students who have completed their Bachelor's degree in architecture or architectural engineering during the 2012 – 2013 academic year from universities in countries belonging to the Arab League are eligible to submit their architectural graduation projects for the Award.

This year, the Award’s total prize money will be increased from USD 10,000 to USD 15,000. It will be at the discretion of the Award jury to decide on the number of winners and on the distribution of the prize money among them. For the 2012 Award cycle, the Award jury awarded equal winning prizes to five projects and distributed the prize money among them. The jury also selected four honorable mentions.


All participants may register online through the Award website ( by creating an account with a user name and password and filling and completing the online Submission Form. The Submission Form will be made available online for participants on June 30, 2013.


Submissions must consist of the student’s submission for the final year graduation project. No additional work may be done to the project except for re-formatting it to match the following required specifications. 

Submissions must consist of:

- Abstract of no more than 300 words

All participants must provide a clear and concise statement of no more than 300 words describing their project. The statement must be typed and filled in the assigned box online at the Award website. The statement may be adapted from a text already developed for the graduation project. Abstracts that exceed 300 words in length will not be accepted.

- One digital portrait sheet (file format: JPG; sheet Size: A0 (841x 1189 mm); file resolution: 150 dpi; file size: under 10MB)

No additional sheets will be accepted.

The digital sheet must be anonymous and shall not display the name of the participant, the participant’s university, or any other identifying marks.

Since the participants will not be able to present their work in person to the jury members, it is permitted – though not required – to add some narrative onto the boards to explain significant aspects of the design.














- Formal Certificate of Graduation

All participants shall provide a copy of a formal document that certifies their completion of a Bachelor’s degree in architecture or architectural engineering during the 2012 – 2013 academic year. The certificate must be submitted along with the abstract paragraph, the drawing sheet, and the Submission Form. The certificate may be any university-issued formal document that verifies the participant’s graduation. It must be submitted / uploaded in JPG or PDF format.

All submissions must be uploaded to the Award website between June 30, 2013 and August 29, 2013.

Applicants will be receiving a confirmation email upon the successful receipt of  the submission material.

The names of the participants, as well as any other identifying details, will remain hidden from the jury members until after the jury has made its final decision.

All the submission items mentioned above may be provided in either Arabic or English.


CSBE fully reserves the right to disqualify participants for any reason it sees fit. For example, if: i) participants do not meet the eligibility criteria for participation in the competition; ii) participants communicate with the competition organizers or jurors in an attempt to influence the judgment of competition entries; iii) entries do not satisfy any of the above-mentioned requirements for submission.


An independent three-member jury will review the entries and select the winners. The jury consists of the following:

Shahira Fahmy is the founder of Shahira Fahmy Architects, which she established in Cairo in 2005. She studied architecture at Cairo University and taught there from 1997 to 2007.

Her work includes architectural and master planning projects, as well as product design projects. She worked on the new campus for the American University in Cairo in 2005 with Legorreta + Legorreta, Abdel Halim Ibrahim, and Sasaki Associates; and she participated, in collaboration with the Dutch photographer Bas Princen, in the 2012 exhibition HOME: Contemporary Architectural Interpretations of the Home in the Arab world, which was presented by the Museum of Architecture in London. She currently is involved in the architectural expansion of the Delfina Foundation headquarters in London in collaboration with the London-based Studio Octopi.

Shaira Fahmy’s work has been cited in international journals and magazines including The New York Times Magazine, The Architects' Journal, The Architectural Review, and The Financial Times. She also was awarded the Bibliotheca Alexandrina Young Architect Award in 2005, and was a recipient of The Green Good Design Award by the Chicago Athenaeum in 2010.

Bernard Khoury is the founder of the architectural office DW5 / Bernard Khoury, which he established in Beirut in 1993. He studied architecture at the Rhode Island school of Design and at Harvard University's Graduate School of Design.

His work features a wide range of residential, commercial, institutional, entertainment, and multi-use development projects. They include Centrale Restaurant in Beirut (2001), the IB3 residential building, also in Beirut (2006), '7' Club in Doha (2010), and the Tumo Center for Creative Technologies in Yerevan, Armenia (2011).

Bernard Khoury's work has been exhibited internationally. A solo show of his work was held at the International Forum for Contemporary Architecture at the Aedes Gallery in Berlin in 2003, and his work has been featured in group exhibitions including YOUprison at the Fondazione Sandretto in Torino in 2008, and SPACE at the opening of the MAXXI museum in Rome in 2010.

He is the recipient of a number of awards including an honorable mention in 2001 from the Borromini Prize, which is given to architects under 40 years of age by the Municipality of Rome, and the Architecture + Award in 2004. He also taught as a visiting professor at the École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne, the École Spéciale d'Architecture in Paris, and the American University of Beirut.

Murat Tabanlıoğlu is the co-founder of Tabanlıoğlu Architects, which he established with Hayati Tabanlıoğlu in Istanbul in 1990. He studied architecture at Vienna Technical University.

His work has included a wide range of building types and projects such as the Istanbul Modern Art Museum in Istanbul (2004), the Loft Gardens residential building in Istanbul (2007), the Astana Arena in Astana, Kazakhstan (2007), the SAS Company Headquarters in Istanbul (2010), the renovation of Cankaya Mosque in Ankara (2011), and Bodrum International Airport (2012).

Murat Tabanlıoğlu’s work has been featured in international exhibitions including A Snapshot of Contemporary Turkish Architecture at the Royal Academy of Arts, which was held in London in 2005, and Seven Architects from Seven Hills, which was held in a number of cities including Berlin in 2009.

He is the recipient of a number of awards including Architect of the Year of the Middle East Architect Awards in 2010, and a RIBA International Award in 2011 for designing the Loft Gardens residential building. In addition to his atelier program at Istanbul Bilgi University, he has lectured at numerous universities around the world. He also has been a member of the Master Jury of the 2013 cycle of the Aga Khan Award for Architecture.

The participation of Murat Tabanlioglu in the jury of the Omrania | CSBE Student Award is made possible through the kind support of the Aga Khan Award for Architecture.

The jury will evaluate the submissions on their stand-alone merit. In doing so, clarity of presentation, purpose, creativity, design competence, etc. will be taken into account. While the different universities may have different criteria for their projects, the jury will evaluate each submission on its own merit, without reference to external criteria.

The jury’s decision will be final, and the jury has the right to decide on the number of winners and on the distribution of the prize money among them.

Award and Exhibition

The winning projects will be declared at an Award ceremony. The location and date of the ceremony will be announced at a later date. The winning projects and a selection of submissions will be exhibited during the Award ceremony and for a few days following it. The winning projects will also be published on the Award website. The Award will cover travel and accommodation expenses for winners from outside the country where the ceremony will be held. Should any of the winning projects be the product of a group effort, the Award will cover the expenses of one representative from the group. The Award ceremonies so far have been held in Amman, Manama, Beirut, and Sharjah.

Starting with the sixth Award cycle, The Award will also cover travel and accommodation expenses for the instructors who supervised the winning projects from outside the country where the ceremony will be held. Should any of the winning projects have more than one supervising instructor, the Award will cover the expenses of one instructor.

Inquiries and Updates

For additional inquiries, please call CSBE at (962) (6) 461-5297 or send an email to  All developments regarding the Award will be posted on the Award web site and on the Award’s Facebook page. If you wish to be informed of any updates on the Award, please provide us with your email address.

Note:  Detailed information on the Award’s previous five cycles (including winning projects, biographies of jury members, and jury reports) are available on the CSBE website ( and on the Award website ( All submitted projects for the 2010 and 2011 cycles of the Award may be viewed on the Award's Facebook page. All projects submitted for the 2012 cycle of the Award may be viewed on the Award website.