campus architecture by francis kéré

startup lions ICT campus in kenya

The Startup Lions Campus is an information and communication technologies (ICT) campus built by Learning Lions, located on the banks of Lake Turkana, Kenya. The project responds to the pressing challenge of youth unemployment faced in the region by offering high-level training and access to international job opportunities, allowing young entrepreneurs to thrive professionally without having to leave their place of origin. The campus will provide 100 new workstations and is the first step in an ambitious vision of spreading ICT networks in remote areas.

In 2020, with financial support from Google, SAP, the Löwenmarsch e.V. team and the Bavarian state, Learning Lions built the first section of our Startup Lions ICT Campus. This section includes the main ICT Center building, as well as parts of the general campus infrastructure such as an eco-market, a canteen/cafeteria, a chill-out area, and some basic limited housing.


The sustainable project celebrates the unique morphology and natural beauty of its site. It is built over two levels that follow the natural slope and features extensive roof terraces that oer sweeping views over Lake Turkana. The roof terraces are shaded by creeping vegetation, providing pleasant outdoor meeting spaces and opportunities for the informal exchange of ideas.


The building takes inspiration from the towering mounds built by termite colonies in the region. Tall ventilation towers create a stack effect to naturally, cool the main working spaces by extracting warm air upwards, while fresh air is introduced through specially designed low-level openings. This system allows the campus to withstand high temperatures and is especially well suited as it prevents dust from damaging the IT equipment. In addition to their functional role, the towers create a landmark in the surroundings.

educational campus

  From the very beginning the project has had collaborative building and learning at its heart, Francis Kéré said. We had imagined an educational facility that blended with the striking natural landscape that surrounds it, mirroring the ingenious structures built by the terminates close by, he continued. It is a special honour for me and my team to have been able to provide the shape for this incredible educational facility and I am looking forward to how it may expand and most importantly see its students succeed.
Structure of the Startup lions educational campus

sustainable architecture with local materials

The campus is built out of locally sourced quarry stone with a plaster finish. In choosing which materials and construction techniques to use, ecological sustainability, cost, and availability factors were weighed to arrive at the best compromise. Collaboration with the local community was key in this decision-making process, drawing from their experience and expertise.

Francis Kere
Francis Kéré
  Francis Kéré is an internationally renowned Burkinabè architect and the 2022 Laureate of the Pritzker Architecture Prize. He is recognised for his pioneering approach to design and sustainable modes of construction. His vocation to become an architect comes from a personal commitment to serve the community he grew up in, and a belief in the transformative potential of beauty.

be part of this project

We are looking for construction volunteers to locally supervise and support the construction process of our award-winning ICT Campus in collaboration with the local team in Turkana/Kenya

help us grow

In these first years of existence, we have achieved proof-of-concept for our education and empowerment program. And we have seen the power of digital literacy to change lives first hand. Now is the time to scale up in Turkana and beyond. You can help us to make it happen!

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