Good design needn't be an end unto itself. Peter Williams, a Jamaican-born architect, understands that architecture and design, when deployed in the right way, can promote longer, healthier lives among residents of third-world countries. His group, ARCHIVE Global, built five prototype houses in Saint-Marc, Haiti-a country with a troubling tuberculosis problem-that were designed with the input of 20 architects. The houses promote good health by using stacked ventilation with perforated walls to maintain steady airflow while drawing in ample sunlight. Onstage, Williams will present his unique approach to architecture, and how design should be about more than just aesthetics.
Peter Williams is an architect and social entrepreneur who prioritizes the link between housing and health as an important means for improving the lives of the world’s poor. For over 10 years, he has worked on building projects on 5 continents and has taught at universities around the world. Peter holds two Masters degrees in African Studies and Architecture respectively from the University of Oxford and Columbia University, a first class honors degree from the City University of New York, and a diploma from the University of Technology in Jamaica. Peter has received numerous awards for research including the Kinne Fellowship from Columbia University, which led him to form ARCHIVE Global. He has also been a visiting researcher at the UNAIDS Secretariat in South Africa and has worked for the World Bank. In 2009, Peter was named among the 22 best emerging social entrepreneurs in the world by Echoing Green and in 2011 he was recognized as one of London’s "40 under 40 International Development Leaders" by Devex. In the same year, Utne Reader also named him among the "25 Visionaries Who are Changing the World." Peter is a Fellow of the Royal Society for Public Health, a member of the American Public Health Association, and lectures widely on architecture, public health, and international development.