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Celebrated Architect Prof. Christopher Benninger Awarded Honorary Doctorate by CEPT University

On a momentous occasion, CEPT University in Ahmedabad conferred the prestigious Honorary Doctorate in Architecture upon the renowned architect and planner, Prof. Christopher Charles Benninger, during its convocation on the 20th of January, 2024. The distinguished architect, known for his transformative contributions to the field, was honoured with a Doctor of Philosophy (Honoris Causa) for his profound, far-reaching, and inspiring impact on architecture, education, and research.

Prof. Christopher Benninger, born in Ohio, USA, embarked on a remarkable journey that led him to India in the late 1960s with a vision to establish the School of Planning at the Center for Environmental Planning and Technology (CEPT) University in Ahmedabad. Since then, he has been an integral part of the university, serving as a board member and contributing to its growth as an institution of architectural excellence.

Having received a Master’s in Architecture from Harvard University and a Master’s in City Planning from MIT, Prof. Benninger’s architectural practice, ‘Christopher Charles Benninger Architects (CCBA),’ has left an incredible mark with exemplary projects worldwide. His designs include institutional campuses, corporate offices, and government buildings, reflecting a commitment to sustainability and human scale.

Among his notable works are campuses for IIT Hyderabad, IIM Calcutta, Azim Premji University, and the Suzlon One Earth Corporate office, globally recognised for its zero-energy consumption. Prof. Benninger’s influence extends beyond architecture, impacting affordable housing initiatives, including India’s first EWS housing scheme and Site and Services housing units funded by the World Bank.

The acclaimed architect is also credited with designing significant structures in Bhutan, including the Supreme Court and ministry buildings, contributing to the country’s transition from monarchy to democracy. Currently involved in projects such as the National Parliament complex in Burundi and a Brain Research Centre in Shanghai, Prof. Benninger’s career spans over fifty years, making him a unique and revered figure in both architecture and planning.

His literary contributions include the widely acclaimed book, ‘Letters to A Young Architect,’ which has seen multiple reprints and translations into various languages. Additionally, the monograph ‘Christopher Benninger: Architecture for a Modern India’ further underscores his impact on contemporary architectural discourse.

Expressing his gratitude for the honour, Prof. Benninger thanked CEPT University, the Board of Governors, and the Lalbhai family, acknowledging their inspiration and support throughout his illustrious career. The Honorary Doctorate recognises Prof. Christopher Charles Benninger’s exceptional contributions, cementing his legacy as a master architect and educator, and exemplifying the highest standards in the architectural fraternity.

Feature Image Courtesy: ccba

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