Ghanaian-Scottish architect, educator and curator Lesley Lokko has been awarded one of the world’s highest honours in architecture – presented on behalf of His Majesty the King. The RIBA medal recognises Lokko’s commitment to championing diverse approaches to architectural practice and education.
The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) president Muyiwa Oki has said Lokko has been selected for “relentlessly pursuing inclusivity and equity in the field,”and is “a fierce champion of equity and inclusion in all aspects of life, Lesley Lokko’s progressive approach to architecture education offers hope for the future – a profession that welcomes those from all walks of life, considers the needs of our environment, and acknowledges a broad range of cultures and perspectives.”
In 2023, Lokko was appointed Curator of the 18th International Architecture Biennale in Venice Her edition was named The Laboratory of the Future and explored the themes of decarbonisation and decolonisation through the lens of Africa.
In 2021, she founded the African Futures Institute (AFI) in Accra, Ghana, aiming to be a new model of education, research and public dialogue that unites the arts, humanities and sciences and “reimagines Africa as the crucible of the future”. Operating as a pan-African think tank, the institute champions cutting-edge teaching and world-class research to confront contemporary challenges around race, environmental justice and new forms of urbanism.