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In 2020, UrbanWorks was featured in Domus as one of "the world’s 50 most creative, interesting and promising emerging architecture practices.”​

UrbanWorks Architecture and Urbanism is an interdisciplinary design-research studio operating in the city of Johannesburg, South Africa.

Founded in 2008 by architect, urban designer, and researcher Thireshen Govender, UrbanWorks was borne out of a simultaneous frustration and curiosity around contemporary urban space and how it was being navigated in post-apartheid South African cities.

Through immersive, experimental, and interdisciplinary explorations and provocations around space as a political instrument, UrbanWorks engages critically with the cultural and economic infrastructures of South African cities. This is achieved using the four key pillars of urbanism, architecture, research and teaching, and interventions.

Associated Sites:

Research and teaching through the University of Johannesburg Graduate School of Architecture. 

A collaborative research and advocacy initiative studying the emerging spaces of micro-economies. 

A collaborative outlet space for all things urban located in Maboneng.


Township Economy People, Spaces and Practices

Andrew Charman, Leif Petersen and Thireshen Govender

ISBN 13 : 978-0-7969-2577-0