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Hanif Kara awarded an OBE.

New Year’s Honours list.

AKT II’s co-founder Hanif Kara has been recognised in the Queen’s New Year’s Honours list.

Hanif has received the title ‘Officer of the Order of the British Empire’ (OBE) for services to architecture, engineering, and education – a relatively unusual recognition of three distinct disciplines. Several further designers have also been recognised this year, including the artist and stage designer Es Devlin, architect Selasi Awo Setufe, and Grimshaw Architects chairman Andrew Whalley.

Hanif remarked “I am overwhelmed by this but it’s a great start in an era of uncertainties. I’m grateful to the many people who’ve supported myself, and AKT II’s adventure, with such kindness and encouragement over the years. I will treasure this award with pride and joy!”


He recently told the Architects’ Journal: “I could never have imagined receiving such an accolade when I first arrived in the UK as a refugee in the 1970s. I hope it will inspire many more people from every background to recognise and pursue the value of our built environment!”

Alongside his work with AKT II, Hanif is also a professor in the practice of architectural technology with Harvard University’s Graduate School of Design and has recently served as a 2021 global Dezeen Awards judge. The Queen’s Honours recognise citizens’ contributions to the arts, sciences, charities, welfare organisations, and to Britain’s success as a whole.