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The City as an Open Classroom: Diversity & Dynamism in Urban Conservation

Asian Heritage Cities Triangle project

8-10 January, 2006
Penang, Malaysia

Delegates and Presenters


NARA, Japan

Masahiro MURO, Chairman of Nara Machizukuri Center (NMC)

Ryotaro KATSURA, Vice-Chairman of NMC. Professor at Ritsumeikan University.

Tachio NIJUKKEN, Vice-Chairman of NMC. Urban Development Planner & Urban Transportation Engineer (Railroad & Bus Systems). Bachelor of Civil Engineering.

Masafumi FUJINO, Vice-Chairman of NMC. Nara Prefectural Office, Habitation section, Unit of Residential environment improvement & Townscape preservation; Bachelor of Architecture, Kobe University (1977); Masters degree, Kobe University (1979); Nara Prefecture Office (1979-present); citizen movement in urban development of Nara (1980-present). Interested in the role of NGO in conservation of historical town.

Ichiro IWAI, Director of NMC (Asian Exchange in Urban Conservation). Urban Planner at Municipality (Urban Design, Local Planning, Architectural Control and Reconstruction Project after Hanshin Great Earthquake); M.En., Environmental Planning, Kobe University (1986); Nishinomiya City Office (1986-present); Member of NMC (1991-present; director 1992-1993 and 2005). Since 1986 , visited many developing countries, particularly in Asia and wrote many papers and essays on Asian cities. Interested in common elements and common objectives in Asian Urban Conservation.

Toru HASEGAWA, Director of NMC; Member of NMC (1993-present). Architect at a railway company as a project manager to build shops and a facility manager of buildings. Visited Penang and joined symposium in 1993. Interested in what we NGO should tell people living in the historic area mainly and how we should do that for urban conservation.

Yosuke TEZUKA, Director of NMC

Shinji SHIGEMATSU, Professor and Head of Department of Asian Culture at Otemon Gakuin University in Osaka specializing in international labor migration and multi-ethnic issues.

Takeyoshi JINNO, Member of NMC. Staff-writer of Asahi-Shimbun Newspaper at Yoshino in Nara.

Daisuke TAKATA, Staff of Nara Prefecture overseeing architectural controls. Interested in city planning, agriculture and center town activation.

Mari SAKAMOTO has lived in Chiang Mai for 16 years and have been working as an interpreter and a translator between Thai and Japanese. Since 2003 she has been involved in NMC exchange program between Nara and Chiang Mai as an interpreter.

CHIANG MAI, Thailand

DUONGCHAN Apavatjrut Charoenmuang is co-founder and secretary general of Urban Development Institute Foundation (UDIF), an independent group that aims to make Chiang Mai a more sustainable and livable place. Dr. Duongchan received her doctorate at University of Tokyo. Her education background was in Architecture, City Planning and Urban Engineering. A native Chiang Mai citizen, she currently works as a researcher at the Social Research Institute, Chiang Mai University.

Worawimon Chairut, Treasurer of UDIF. She received a Bachelor's degree in Geography from Chiang Mai University and a Master's degree in Demography from Mahidol University. She devotes her leisure time to conservation and protection of Thailand's cultural heritage.

Den Batra is member of Jao Kad. For two years, he served as president of Indian Association, and twelve years as president of Guru Singh SABHA (Sikh Temple in Chiang Mai). He is now a consultant and treasurer to the temple.

PENANG, Malaysia

CHOONG Sim Poey, a Penangite from a Baba family, went to the Penang Free School and graduated in Medicine from Birmingham University, UK. Presently, he is the medical director of a private family planning clinic. Dr. Choong has always been a strong advocate of NGO's as an agent of social change. He was deeply involved in population and gender issues as chairman of the Federation of FPA's Malaysia for 2 terms. Lately, he has taken more interest in heritage conservation and sustainable development through his involvement in the Penang Heritage Trust and Sustainable Transport Environment for Penang group, of which he is president and coordinator respectively.

Gwynn JENKINS is an Associate with Architect LLA Sdn Bhd., a prominent practice in Penang pioneering in conservation. While serving on Penang State's Repeal of Rent Control sub-committee (1998 - 2000) she prepared reports for the state government on the inner-city communities of George Town affected by rent control repeal. Her doctoral dissertation, titled, "Contested Space: Heritage and Identity Reconstructions: An Enquiry into Conservation Strategies within a Developing Asian City, George Town, Penang, Malaysia," was completed in 2003 at the Centre for South East Asian Studies at the University of Hull, England. Prior to arriving in SE Asia in 1995, Gwynn was a consultant designer in London, as well as a lecturer in Interior Design for Kingston and Middlesex Universities. Her London design experience ranged from museum environments, transportation, retail, leisure, banking, prisons, and residential work.

Joann KHAW has a licensed freelance tour guide since 1992. She is an active member of Penang Heritage Trust specializing in heritage walks. She is interested in architecture and Chinese metaphysics.

Irene LEUNG is regional coordinator and research fellow at the Institute for Cultural Enterprise, an organization committed to promoting cultural sustainability through socio-economic development around the world. Prior to joining ICE, she worked for Firsthand New York Walks on community-based tourism and the arts; New York Community Trust's Education, Arts, and Humanities grant program; and Asia Society's international education policy initiative. Irene received a doctoral degree in the History of Art from the University of Michigan (2001).

She is currently pursuing a Masters in International Affairs at New School University in New York. Her current research focuses on 'placemaking' through notions of mobility, in particular, unanticipated uses of spaces by a multiplicity of social actors.

Clement LIANG serves as a council member in the Penang Heritage Trust since 2003. Being multi-lingual, he has special interest in the history of the ethnic minorities in Penang and he presented a paper on the pre-War Japanese residents during the Penang Story Forum held in 2002. Clement is active in several foreign-language organisations and the botanic society in Penang. He frequently hosts talks on world heritage sites and engages in the activities to save the local endangered heritage sites.

KHOO Salma Nasution alias KHOO Su Nin, is a writer and historian specializing in local history and cultural heritage. She served as Honorary Secretary of the Penang Heritage Trust (1989-2003). She was project manager of the Syed Alatas Mansion restoration in 1993, co-coordinator of the 'Sustainable Penang' Initiative, a pilot project in participatory planning (1997-9), a co-site manager of the UNESCO LEAP programme (1999-2000), and project director and convener of 'The Penang Story,' a social history project (2001-2002). She has written a number of books including Streets of George Town, Penang (1993), Penang Postcards Collection (2003), Kinta Valley: Pioneering Malaysia's Modern Development (2005). She recently completed research on cultural identity issues in Phuket, Thailand on an Asian Public Intellectual Fellowship from Nippon Foundation. In 1991, she co-founded the Asia & West Pacific Network for Urban Conservation, reconstituted in 2005 as Lestari Heritage Network. www.lestariheritage.net

LIM Gaik Siang is Advisor to the Conservation Committee of the Penang Teochew Association and also Chairman of The North Malaya Teo-Aun Association. Gaik Siang was the council member of the Penang Heritage Trust from 2001 to 2003 where she served as technical consultant and Mandarin-speaking resource person for the organization. She also sat as a board member of the Penang Teochew Association from 2003 to 2005 and was actively involved in the restoration of the ancestral temple of the association (Han Kang Kah Meow). Gaik Siang works as the Vice President (Asia Pacific) of a multinational corporation dealing in engineering products.

Janet PILLAI is a pioneer young people's theatre practitioner in Malaysia. She graduated with a BA in Social Science from the Universiti Sains Malaysia and an MA in Children's Theatre from the University of Hawaii. She has been involved in arts education since 1979 and has developed a unique integrated arts training program for children. Besides directing theatre she also coordinates heritage education projects for young people, trains facilitators and designs curriculum for community arts projects. Janet teaches theatre at University Sains Malaysia, Penang and coordinates projects at community level.

PHNOM PENH, Cambodia

BENG Hong Socheat Khemro is Deputy Director General at the Ministry of Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction, where he is responsible for drafting and reviewing urban planning and land management policies and laws, including urban conservation and development. He has lectured at the Royal Academy of Cambodia on Geographical Development and recently on Cultural Tourism Planning and Community Development. He teaches and supervises Master Degree and Ph.D. students at both private and public universities in Phnom Penh. He also works as a national consultant to various organisations including the UNDP, UNHABITAT, WB, ADB, GTZ, Kaunrad Adeneur Foundation, and a number of NGOs, and private consultant firms. His currently leads an urban conservation project to draft the Sub-decree and Joint Declaration on Conservation of Historical Buildings and Sites in cities of Cambodia and in Battambang town. During his stay 1993-2000 in England, he obtained three degrees, Ph.D. degree in Development Planning Studies, Master degree in the Economic of Urbanisation and Managing the City Economy and Post Graduate Diploma in Urban Development Planning from University College London. He also has a Bachelor degree in Civil and Light Industrial Engineering in 1991 from Phnom Penh, Cambodia.

HOK Sokol currently has an architecture firm designing and building projects base on preservation and restoration of old wooden Khmer building as well as building in new updated design. In 2000, he received a degree in architecture and town planning based on vernacular and traditional architecture. Between 1999-2001, he worked as a researcher with Helen Grant Ross and Darryl Collins on "Building Cambodia: New Khmer architecture 1953-70," funded by the Toyota foundation. In 2002-4, he worked as a program co-leader on the research project 'Vernacular Khmer Architecture,' funded by the Rockefeller foundation. He is interested in Cambodian vernacular and 60's New Khmer architecture, conservation and preservation of sacred and living spaces, and historic city planning.

Geoff PYLE is an architect from England where he set up his own practice. Some of his projects involved the conversion and renovation of historic buildings. During the last three years, he has been living in Phnom Penh where he works on new architectural projects with a Cambodian architect. He established Khmer Architecture Tours (www.ka-tours.org) in collaboration with architecture students in Phnom Penh. He co-founded Sang Salapak - Building Arts (www.sangsalapak.org.kh) with a group of arts consultants. Some of the organization's work has been conducted with UNESCO. Geoff has a wife and a 9-year old daughter.

Sitho SIM is a fifth year student at Norton University, College of science, Department of Architecture and Urbanism. She has taken courses in conservation, survey on temples and old houses, such as ones built during and after French colonial period. She is interested in protecting buildings threatened by environmental and human causes.

Ratana SOUN is a fourth year student at the Faculty of Architecture and Urbanism, Royal University of Fine Art, Cambodia, and a diploma student at Australian Center for Education. Aside from school, she seeks practical field experience to complement her studies. She is a part time architecture tour guide in Phnom Penh. Previously, she interned at UN-Habitat's PUPR (Partnership for Urban Poverty Reduction) Phase II, as well as at JSA (Japanese Safe-guarding of Angkor). Ms. Soun has just returned from a two-month training course on "3D reconstruction of Angkor Wat Temple and Angkor area" in Germany. Her current interest is in urbanization and urban planning in developing countries.

PHUKET, Thailand

Pranee SAK is a vocal promoter of history and culture of Phuket through writing, teaching and hosting cultural events for local residents, students, as well as visitors. She contributes regularly to local magazines and hosts a daytime radio program about the preservation of Phuket's culture. Ms. Sak has spoken on topics ranging from the paranormal in Thai society, Vegetarian festival, Phuket's town culture, sea gypsies, and Sino-Portuguese houses, Buddhist water ceremony, to 'forgotten' arts such as silver thread flower arrangements and southern Thai lullabies. She has worked tirelessly to unit Phuket's various Hokkien 'clans,' representing Phuket Hokkien 'Babas' with counterparts in Singapore, Penang and Malacca. Her most recent project is at the Phuket Rajabhat Museum which tells the story of Phuket's people and cultures.

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The City as an Open Classroom: Diversity & Dynamism in Urban Conservation

Asian Heritage Cities Triangle project

8-10 January, 2006
Penang, Malaysia

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Programme Schedule

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Workshop Summary

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Delegates and Presenters

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Coordinating and
Participating Organizations

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What participants say
about the workshop

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A project by Lestari Heritage Network
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