Kuukuwa Manful is a trained architect and researcher who creates, studies and documents architecture in Africa.
She is an Assistant Professor of Architecture at the Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning, University of Michigan. Her current projects include a book about ‘The Architecture of Education in Ghana’ and a study of the ‘Formalisation and Unformalisation of Architecture in West Africa’ using a collection of endangered archives that she has recently digitised.
She was previously a visiting post-doctoral scholar at the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University and a post-doctoral researcher on the African State Architecture Project at SOAS, University of London. She holds a PhD from SOAS, University of London, an MSc in African Studies from the University of Oxford, and Masters and BSc Architecture degrees from the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology.
Her academic publications, creative writing, and public scholarship have appeared in African Affairs, Al Jazeera, Aperture, Curator: The Museum Journal, and Tampered Press. She has exhibited at and curated several art and architecture exhibitions around the world including recently in Ethiopia, South Africa, Ghana and the United Kingdom. Her most recent publication include the co-edited book ‘Building African Futures: 10 Manifestos for Transformative Architecture and Urbanism’, published by Iwalewa books; and ‘Building Classes: Secondary Schools and Sociopolitical Stratification in Ghana’ which was awarded the 2023 ASA Graduate Student Paper Prize.
Through her Accra Archive project, funded by an award from British Library’s Endangered Archives Programme, she has digitised a collection of endangered historical architectural material pertaining to architecture, construction, and urban regulation in Ghana. She curates adansisɛm – an architecture collective that documents Ghanaian architecture theory, research and practice; co-founded and runs sociarchi – a social architectural enterprise that advocates for and provides architectural services to people who ordinarily cannot afford architects; and serves as president of the Docomomo Accra Chapter.