The WISE Awards

Mr. Mohammed Rezwan

Position: Executive Director of Shidhulai Swanirvar Sangstha
Country: Bangladesh

Architect Mohammed Rezwan is the Founding Executive Director of Shidhulai Swanirvar Sangstha. He introduced a floating education system to ensure year-round access to quality education in flood-prone regions. He developed, expanded and sustained the floating schools over 10 years. Drawing on his architectural expertise, he designs spaces on boats that successfully accommodate the needs of schools, libraries, and training and healthcare centers. He is also the inventor of the “solar water farming” technique, as well as the “bamboo, bottle and siren” flood warning system and the SuryaHurricane solar lantern. His floating schools and SuryaHurricane solar lantern designs were exhibited at the Design with the Other 90%: CITIES exhibition, organized by Smithsonian’s Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum in New York. He is featured in the Erlesene Welten (Hungry Minds) documentary film, as well as in the documentary film Easy Like Water, supported by the Sundance Documentary Institute. He has received both national and international honors including the Sotokoto Green Fighter (2010), Cordes Fellowship (2010), Heroes of the Great Bengal (2006), Social Entrepreneur of Global Philanthropy Forum (2006), Global Social Benefit Incubator (2005/2006), and an Ashoka CBI Award (2003). Rezwan has been featured in international newspapers and magazines including Bergens Tidende, Politiken, The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Independent (UK), and the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. His work has also received coverage on Euronews, CNN International, Al Jazeera English, Smithsonian Channel HD, National Geographic Channel, and NewsHour with Jim Lehrer (PBS).