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People, Places & Events

Paul Finch – WAF origins and this year’s theme “together”

When Paul Finch started the World Architecture Festival in 2008, his idea was to bring together the global A&D community to celebrate achievements, learn from one another and discover the latest products and ideas. He describes WAF as a layer cake; there’s a competition with live crits for delegates to follow, a conference with industry leaders as keynote speakers, a networking event, a project gallery, a product exhibition, and so much more. Over the three days there are always multiple things to get involved in at any one time. It’s impossible to be bored.

For us as founder partner, the benefits are that we get to take the pulse of the global A&D community in one place at the same time. We also get to show off our products to the people that matter, as well as offering our water bar as the networking destination par excellence. As Paul points out, architects and designers have very positive feelings towards WAF – it’s an opportunity for collaboration, as well as friendly competition, and to show their world their cherished creations. To have helped create this atmosphere and be associated with all that excitement and energy is a big win for us as a brand. 

You get the feeling listening to Paul that Lisbon picked itself as the perfect destination for the first live WAF post-pandemic. He loves the Portuguese people, the waterfront location, and the wealth of stunning architecture both old and new. The theme this year is “together” – as Paul says that could as well have been “together again” – and the sense of renewal one feels around the city is a perfect match to this year’s theme. Enjoy Paul’s reflections on the successful return of WAF 22.         

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