Issue 3Sustainable Urbanism - New Directions

A call to action to foster a more holistic, integrated approach to urban design! In collaboration with Qatar University, Urbanista.org presents the illustrated proceedings of the Sustainable Urbanism - New Directions Workshop curated and organised by Dr. Anna Grichting, Qatar University, and funded by the Qatar National Research Fund. Publication editor: Dr. Lucy Bullivant, Urbanista.org. Image: Qatar University Edible Campus Green Roofs. Students ARCT421, Qatar University. © Qatar University.


Extradisciplinary Investigations – Antidisciplinary Spaces: Sustaining Future Urban and Social Systems

The aim of the Sustainable Urbanism – New Directions Workshop, Dr. Anna Grichting, Qatar University, curator of the international event, explains, was to discuss new directions in sustainable urbanism with a particular focus on the social sciences. Architecture and urbanism are between disciplines, across disciplines: in a marginal space – the border – which contemporary philosophers such as Gilles Deleuze and Rosi Braidotti describe as the space where the most creative and innovative things happen.

Research Gaps in Sustainable Urbanism: Socio-Cultural Implications of Sustainable Infrastructure in Arab Eco-Cities

What is known and of value in sustainable urbanism is derived both from academic texts and real-world projects, encompassing the newest areas of research. What is yet to be investigated to full advantage in application, argues Dr. Rafael Pizarro, is state-of-the-art knowledge of sustainable urbanism including advances in sustainable urban forms, green transportation, land use, urban design, open space design, density and pedestrianism.

Sustainable City Building: an Inter-Disciplinary Research Agenda informed by high calibre City Data

Sustainable city building must be supported by interdisciplinary research informed by high-calibre city data, maintains Dr. Patricia McCarney, President and CEO of the World Council on City Data (WCCD). Working within the social sciences, she and her colleagues have come to recognize that the key challenge facing urban research that can inform sustainable urbanism is the lack of high-quality, comparable data on city sustainability performance, operational planning, design and management, and quality of life.

Supporting Decisions Towards the Post Carbon City

The need for a paradigm shift in order to progress towards sustainable development in cities is highlighted by Dr. Patrizia Lombardi. She focuses her analysis on the relations between cities and climate change, and the concept of the post-carbon city which has recently emerged as a concept emphasising the process of transformation, a shift in paradigm that is necessary to respond to the multiple challenges of climate change, ecosystem degradation, social inequity and economic pressures.

Soul to Soil Permaculture Workshop – From waste to fertility, building soil fertility with compost

The Soul to Soil Permaculture Workshop: From Waste to Fertility: Building Soil Fertility with Compost, led by ecologist Nance Klehm and staged at the Qatar University Plant Nursery on 19 March 2016 was supported by SAIC (Al Sulaiteen Industrial Complex). Landscape engineers and gardeners from Qatar University took part alongside students, professional architects and landscape designers, local school children and their teachers.

Permaculture and Edible Landscape for Food Security and Biodiversity at Qatar University

The edible permaculture garden at Qatar University is a significant emerging landscape project initiated by Department of Architecture faculty member Dr. Anna Grichting. Designed by her Undergraduate students, and supported by a grant from the Qatar Foundation, the garden project has benefitted greatly from the participation of Luzita Ball and Paige Tantillo, two certified permaculturists collaborating with the Department.

7 Pillars to achieving sustainable development in Fragile Zones: A Regional Reconstruction Strategy for the Middle East

It is time to establish a regional reconstruction strategy for the Middle East, one that involves collective vision, broad participation, smart security, equality, and other key elements, argues Dr. Sultan Barakat, director of research at the Brookings Doha Center and a senior fellow in the Center for Middle East Policy at Brookings, one of the panellists speaking at the ARC16 (Annual Research Conference) session on Sustainable Urbanism, Qatar National Conference Center, 22 March 2016.

Homegrown Urban Forestry

Landscape architect Johanna Gibbons’ participation in Sustainable Urbanism New Directions gave her the opportunity to reflect on the symbolic value of a single sierra tree surviving alone in Doha Bay for Doha’s future urban forest, to visit Suhaim Al Thani’s farm on the outskirts of Doha and share common interests in landscape and permaculture, and admire the self-sustaining approach to edible planting represented by Qatar University’s Edible Campus project initiated by faculty member Dr. Anna Grichting.

Reflections on Permeable, Anti-Fragile and Participative Urbanism

The Sustainable Urbanism Workshop at Qatar University highlighted the new era in urban development, writes speaker Dr. Rob Roggema, landscape architect, design expert on sustainable urbanism, climate adaptation, renewable energy landscapes and the design of urban agriculture, and founder of Cittaideale. Instead of thinking in icons and large building programmes, the emphasis was on how to redevelop the local and make use of the laws of nature in order to create a city that is able to change whenever this is required, for instance as result of climate change, economic downturn or population growth or decline.


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