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About this talk

Located at the centre of Brunei’s capital of Bandar Seri Begawan, Kampong Ayer is known as one of the world’s largest water villages; rich in cultural heritage that has been developed and sustained through many centuries. Kampong Ayer is estimated to be over 1000 years old and was characterized as the ‘Venice of the East’ by Antonio Pigafetta. However, with rapid development and increased desire for better living conditions as modernisation sweeps through the nation, the physical and social structures of traditional Kampong Ayer have been significantly affected. For instance, over the past two decades, changes can be seen and have occurred in the traditional architectural styles of Kampong Ayer, with the building forms and spatial patterns being replaced by modern styles that incorporate considerably modern building materials and western designs. The houses are no longer roofed and walled by leaves and shoots, nor floored by bamboo and other local materials. Despite the changes in both the physical and cultural landscapes of Kampong Ayer, the local community finds their sense of place in the water. This presentation will discuss the history, traditions and resilience of Kampong Ayer and its community.


Speaker & Moderator

Speaker: Ms. Dalilah Nabilah

Pursuing a Ph.D. in Geography at the University of Hawai’i at Mānoa. Her research focuses on understanding how disaster-affected communities memorialized an uncommon death caused by the unpredictable forces of Nature, that is commonly known as, natural hazards. While earning her Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Geography from Universiti Brunei Darussalam, she studied inter-relationships among national heritage, tourism practices and local communities. She has always been fascinated by the many different places and regions of the world and has come to appreciate how culture, politics, and the natural environment interact to change them over time. She wants to continue analyzing and understanding the landscapes of the Asia-Pacific region. She hopes that her research will one day further our knowledge of human-environment interaction

Moderator: Mr. Mark Evidente

Lawyer and environmental planner in the Philippines. He is President/CEO of TwoEco, Inc. a sustainability consulting firm which has successfully completed various tourism development plans, conservation plans, and policy studies in the Philippines. He holds a master’s degree in environmental policy from Yale University, law and political science degrees from the University of the Philippines, and recently completed his term as President of the Heritage Conservation Society (Philippines).

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