His staunch positions on the integration of architecture into the urban context and the unrelenting originality of his projects worldwide have helped forge his international reputation.
His original approach, defying stylistic considerations, is guided exclusively by context – the moment, the site, its history, its environment. In 2001, he received three of the highest international honours: the Royal Gold Medal of the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA), the Praemium Imperiale awarded by the Japan Art Association, and the Borromini Prize for the Lucerne Culture and Convention Center. He was named Doctor Honoris Causa of the Royal College of Art in London in 2002. Three years later, in Israel, he received the annual Wolf Foundation Prize “for providing a new model of contextualism and redefining the dialectic between the two salient characteristics of contemporary architecture: concreteness and ephemerality”. In Frankfurt the following year, he received the International Highrise Award for the Torre Agbar in Barcelona, “as it makes an outstanding contribution to the current debate on high-rises at several different levels”. In 2008, he received the prestigious Pritzker Prize. In France, he has been awarded numerous honours, including the French Academy of Architecture Gold Medal, two Équerres d’Argent and the French Grand Prix National for Architecture.