Alejandro believes in the ethical responsibility of designers to contribute towards a better society. He is co-founder and Director of URBAM, the Center for Urban and Environmental Studies at EAFIT University in Medellin Colombia. His experience combines architectural, urban, environmental projects and planning. He is a Loeb Fellow from Harvard GSD and was given the Obayashi Prize 2016.
Between 2004 and 2008 as Director of EDU, the “Empresa de Desarrollo Urbano” of the Municipality of Medellin, and then as the city’s director of urban projects, he led the Social Urbanism strategy to improve the most impoverished neighborhoods, making Medellin a blueprint for the future for other distressed cities worldwide.
Since 2010, from URBAM, he delves into the urban, environmental and social issues of emerging developing countries, particularly those with weak political and institutional structures. In addition to his work in Colombia, he also has a broad experience as a international consultant and advisor of multidisciplinary teams for urban, environmental and social projects in the global south countries like, Mexico, Costa Rica, Brazil, India, among others. This includes work for UN Habitat. (180 words)
He is a member of the International Advisory Board of The RELIEF from UCL, a center for research and learning focused in prosperity in the age of mass displacement in Lebanon. And member of the International Advisory Board of CIGIDEN, the National Research Center for Integrated Disaster Risk Management in Chile. Is a Visiting professor of EAAD from Tecnológico de Monterrey in México, to boost the C+Labs, an initiative for the City Labs for the Country.
He is also active in design through his studio, AlejandroEcheverri + Valencia Architects, focusing on projects with low environmental impact for tropic regions. His work has earned the Colombian National Architectural Award in 1996, the Pan-American Biennale in Urban Design Award 2008, the Curry Stone Design Prize in 2009, the 10th Veronica Rudge Green Prize in Urban Design from Harvard GSD in 2013, among others.
Alejandro has collaborated as a professor, lecturer and juror in various international and national institutions. His intellectual production includes publications and articles focused in architecture, urbanism and environment.