Many responsible persons and groups inside and outside government in many countries of the Arab and Islamic world are questioning the phenomenon of indiscriminately borrowing alien styles, techniques, and processes for their building and urban development activities. As a result of this situation which has persisted for more than fifty years, a break in continuity with a very rich tradition in this sector of human activity and accomplishment has occurred.
To be able to formulate intelligent policies and approaches to replace this trend, adequate scientific information is necessary to explain the underlying factors and processes which shaped traditional buildings and towns, so as to be able to benefit from the knowledge and experience of the past for a better future in architecture and urbanism.
This paper summarizes the author's extensive research in this area by communicating the findings in two separate categories: the first deals with issues and topics related to the nature of decision-making in building activity, and the second with the characteristics of the most predominant physical organizational system historically utilized in the Arab and Islamic world.
The paper concludes with a summary list of lessons and issues emerging out of a sound understanding of the traditional system.
Hakim, Besim. "Arab-Islamic Urban Structure." The Arabian Journal for Science and Engineering 7, no. 2 (1982): 69-79.
The University of Petroleum and Minerals, 1982