School of Design

Postgraduate research student profiles


Majdi Faleh

Phone: (+61 4) 3253 1154

Start date

Feb 2014

Submission date

Feb 2017


Curriculum vitae

Majdi Faleh CV
[doc, 73.11 kb]
Updated 27 Feb 2014

Majdi Faleh

Majdi Faleh profile photo


Urban and architectural metamorphosis in the Islamic world in the time of globalisation: utopian realities and challenges


This research aims to examine and explore the effects of emerging globalisation trends on the Arab/Islamic world architecture, built environment, as well as on the identity. This study will also focus on the factors and major forces that are driving the built environment including societal disconnect, political agendas, cultural identity, and economic priorities.

Why my research is important

The Islamic world architecture and built environment have seen great shifts, from sustainable and highly complex structures to superficial boxes, with a strange and ill character. “Breathtaking” structures, high-rise buildings and shimmering skyscrapers are rising in the Middle East. An artificial pearl is created in the middle of a wide gulf and a desert, where fish is forgotten and trapped inside the urban jungle. Large bay windows, great views on the Arab Gulf, and wide transparent structures are repetitively monotonous aspects of the whole urban scene. It is definitely a “fly-by” world, and a world of brands and capitalism. People are guests in their homes, but strangers in their own environments. Scholars and academics in the Arab world agree that the only way out of the state of underdevelopment is to assess critically our own values and beliefs- a fact made urgent in the post 9/11 era (El Sheshtawy, 2004).

As this research focuses on the potential of heritage and contemporary identity, it will deploy original methods and raise important questions in relation to globalisation trends and urban heritage. The originality of this work comes from the analytic studies of Islamic architecture and planning, including a philosophical reflection on the urban paradigms within the confines of Islamic design and urban planning. This research will engage with stakeholders and designers from the field, as well as with universities and research centres across the Middle East.


  • International Postgraduate Research Scholarship (IPRS)
  • Australian Postgraduate Award (APA)
  • UWA ‘Safety Net’ Top-Up scholarship
  • Fulbright Alumni Funding (Upon Application)

2010 Islamic Design Exhibition, Majdi Faleh, Indiana, USA