NigerHeritage: Novel Designs for Ancient and Historical Heritage

Monday, July 30 - Thursday, August 2

Neubauer Collegium for Culture and Society
5701 S. Woodlawn Avenue
Chicago, Illinois 60637

The NigerHeritage project is an international effort to preserve and display the unique archaeological, paleontological, and cultural history of Niger in two new ground-breaking institutions. Architects, city planners, scientists, historians, diplomats, and Nigerien leaders are working together to design a novel national museum pavilion in the capital city of Niamey for display of world-renowned archaeological and paleontological treasures and a multi-faceted cultural center in the oasis Agadez at the crossroads of the Sahara Desert. For the national museum, we outline an energy-efficient, novel pavilion that beautifully displays Africa's greatest collection of dinosaur fossils as well as an unparalleled collection of fossil humans and artifacts from the unique pre-dynastic cultures of the Green Sahara. The cultural center, also an energy-efficient hybrid of modern and traditional architecture, will house the unique natural and cultural heritage of the world’s greatest desert and its nomadic peoples, from fossils to music and crafts, as well as creative studios for learning and composing. The 2018 conference at the University of Chicago is a watershed meeting to crystallize program and design concepts.

This conference was made possible in part by The Sereno Fossil Lab. The Fossil Lab gratefully acknowledges Robert and Ellen Vladem, who generously support its vision for NigerHeritage.


Monday, July 30

10:00 am – 12:00 pm
Session 1: Welcome and Opening Remarks
Bisa Williams (Former US Ambassador to Niger), moderator

10:00   Jonathan Lear (Roman Family Director, Neubauer Collegium for Culture and Society, University of Chicago)
10:05   Daniel Diermeier (Provost, University of Chicago)
10:10   Assoumana Mallam Issa (Minister of Cultural Rennaissance, Niger)
10:15   Mohamed Anacko (President, Regional Counsel of Agadez)
10:20   Introduction of the Remaining Nigerien Delegation
10:30   Introduction of Other Conference Participants
10:40   Paul Sereno (Paleontologist/Archaeologist, University of Chicago)
11:10   Mohamed Alhassane (Archaeologist)

Tuesday, July 31

11:00 am – 12:00 pm
Session 2: Pavilion Site
Mariam Kamara (Architect & Urban Planner), moderator

12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

1:00 – 2:30 pm
Session 3: Pavilion Programming
Lisa Roberts (Designer), moderator

2:30 – 3:00 pm

3:00 – 4:30 pm
Session 4: Pavilion Design Concepts
Rebel Roberts (Architect), moderator

Wednesday, August 1

9:30 – 10:15 am
Session 5: Cultural Center Site
Mariam Kamara (Architect & Urban Planner), moderator

10:15 – 10:30 am

10:30 am – 12:00 pm
Session 6: Cultural Center Programming
Lisa Roberts (Designer), moderator

12:00 – 1:00 pm

1:00 – 3:00 pm
Session 7: Cultural Center Design Concepts

3:00 – 3:30 pm

3:30 – 4:00 pm
Session 8: Local Exhibit Spaces
Mohamed Alhassane (Archaeologist), moderator

Thursday, August 2

9:30 – 11:00 am
Session 9: Next Steps
Bisa Williams (Former US Ambassador to Niger), moderator

11:00 – 11:30 am
Session 10: NigerHeritage Website
Paul Sereno (Sereno Fossil Lab, University of Chicago), moderator

11:30 am – 12:00 pm
Closing Remarks
Paul Adderley (University of Stirling)