Must-sees at Expo 2020 Dubai UAE!

From fascinating pavilions to installations by #DI Alumni, there’s no shortage of enthralling innovations

The first World Expo ever held in the Middle East, Expo 2020 Dubai UAEruns until 31 March 2022. The event aims to promote international relationships and showcase exceptional innovation. The expo is spread across three main themed districts - Mobility, Opportunity, and Sustainability - with numerous pavilions, installations and Country Pavilions divided between them.

With so much to experience, we’ve selected just a few of the highlights:

Asif Khan

Former #DI Speaker and founder of his famed eponymous architecture firm, Asif Khan was bestowed the significant task of creating the Expo Entry Portals, which greet the visitors of this prestigious event. The futuristic structures span more than six kilometers and explore the Arabic design tradition of Mashrabiya, that combines form and function and controls light and airflow. The project, made from ultra-lightweight carbon fibre composite, took roughly three years to complete.

Al Wasl Dome

As the largest 360-degree projection surface in the world, the Al Wasl Dome is one of Expo 2020’s standout architectural innovations. This structure is considered the jewel of the event, consisting of 550 tonnes of moulded steel, with over 800 technicians involved in its construction.

Es Devlin


Former #DI Speaker and iconic stage designer, Es Devlin is the brains behind the impressive UK Poem Pavilion, and is the first female designer in history to create a pavilion for the UK. Her immersive, radical structure uses artificial intelligence to write poems in an illuminated “message to space” and invites expo visitors to contribute. Poem Pavilion was inspired by Stephen Hawking’s Breakthrough Message, which was a global competition that invited people to write messages which represented humanity, in the event that we ever encounter another civilisation.

 Colours of the World Parade

In celebration of the rich cultural diversity each country has to offer, the Colours of the World Parade is held daily and features musicians and performers representing their participating regions. The parade aims to radiate positive energy.

Olafur Eliasson

Icelandic-Danish artist and former #DI Speaker, Olafur Elisasson once again presents his work, The Presence of Absence. He previously exhibited this work in 2019. The structure is formed from bronze cast around melting glacial ice in Greenland and captures its shape.

International Day of Persons with Disabilities

On Friday, 3 December 2021, the expo will be hosting performances and live events in honour of International Day of Persons with Disabilities. Facilities and services for these special events will be made as accessible as possible for all in attendance.

Singapore Pavilion


The stunning Singapore Pavilion forms part of Expo’s Sustainability District and focuses on nature, nurture, and future. The pavilion offers insights into a City of Nature and how this vision can be realised through sustainable solutions. Not just a pretty face, the Singapore Pavilion represents the country’s knack of turning limitations into opportunities through the integration of design, technology, and nature.

Australia Pavilion

Another breathtaking Country Pavilion, the Australia Pavilion forms part of the Mobility District with themes that encapsulate the country’s optimism, ambition and creativity while highlighting diversity and ingenuity. Designed by Brisbane-based architects bureau^proberts, the pavilion draws inspiration from a cumulus cloud, which is a prominent feature of Australia’s landscape. Committed to sustainability, the Australia Pavilion is made from low-impact materials and has a smart water-saving system.

Printing Michelangelo’s David

A 3D-printout of Michelangelo’s David forms part of the Italian Pavilion, which is themed Beauty Connects People. The five-meter-tall replica of one of the world’s most iconic statues took 40 hours of digital scanning and months of work to produce. It now stands proudly in the Opportunity District. 

Read more:

A new public pavilion by Es Devlin creates a glimpse into the future of electric travel.

Olafur Eliasson’s newly released AR App for kids.

Asif Khan: Always work with different scales.