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Forum for Humanities: Culture, Governance and Public Space

Forum for Humanities is a proposal to rethink the United Nations Headquarters, exploring its potential to have even greater exposure and transparency. The project is a new hybrid between culture, governance, and public space, in order to make the UN more accessible to the external public. The proposal extends Dag Hammarskjold Plaza, a historical space of debate located on its perimeter, into the UN Headquarters. A new annex to the existing UNHQ will function as an exhibition center. The complex provokes cultural exchange through a series of exhibitions, and spaces for gathering and debate, advancing political engagement with a wider set of actors.

The expanded plaza transforms the landscape across First Avenue and the UNHQ’s North lawn into a series of outdoor activity exhibition spaces. The exhibition center is designed to be perceived as a floating volume to free up the ground level and reinforce its connection to the plaza. A gentle ramp to the upper floor will host the UN mission exhibitions, also providing access to lecture and workshop spaces. The second floor provides space for the national exhibitions. There, 195 rooms with varied layouts will host all the UN member nations to expose their culture and pressing concerns.