This is the fourth such bi-annual visit starting in 2006 all of which have been fully supported by the generous contributions from the Dubai office of WS Atkins, a world leading design firm and the largest multidisciplinary consultancy in Europe involved in the Burj AL Arab, Dubai Metro and the London Olympic park to name few projects.
BUiD’s associated UK university, Cardiff University, is a leader in Sustainable Design research where the students toured different laboratories and spent time researching the extensive collection of scientific publications and dissertations at the Cardiff library. They also attended several presentations by academic staff and PhD students highlighting the latest research in the different areas of sustainability. BUiD’s students were proud to find that a BUiD’s Graduate, Hassan Alfarra, was among the PhD students presenting to them at Cardiff.
Atkins Prof. Bassam Abu Hijleh, Dean of the Engineering and IT Faculty at BUiD said :“This trip shows BUiD’s commitment to keep students appraised of the latest research, innovations and practices in the field of sustainability in order to allow them to excel in their studies and research here at BUiD. This will ensure that the students are educated in the latest aspects of research, technology and practice in order to better help advance the green agenda in the UAE, the region and home countries of students who came to study at BUiD from farther away.”
The students also visited the headquarters of WS Atkins in London where they heard from top Atkins designers showcasing Atkins’ commitment to innovative sustainable designs in a wide range of projects all over the world. This included the multi-year work on the London 2012 Olympic Park for which Atkins was the official engineering design services provider.
Richard Barrett, chief executive officer of Atkins in the Middle East region said: “Our long-term association with BUiD is an essential part of our commitment to help lead the urgent transition to a low carbon future. It is essential that we constantly push the boundaries of sustainable design, so the opportunity to share and challenge ideas and knowledge with BUiD’s MSc students has been tremendously beneficial for all involved.”
The students’ schedule included visits to the Building Research Establishment’s (BRE) Innovation Park where they inspected firsthand a range of Green design demonstration buildings showcasing a wide range of innovative green designs and technologies, and to the world famous AA School of Architectural in London where the students gained further insight from by academic staff and graduate students highlighting the ongoing research in different areas of sustainability.
The students had the chance to spend time at a design exhibition hosted at the AA as well as spending time at the AA’s comprehensive library.
Noha Jaheen, one of BUiD’s Students in MSc in the Sustainable Design of the Built Environment, said:” The Morphology designs in the AA school exhibition demonstrated a high level of imagination and creation without limits, reflected through modern architectural methods. That underlies the importance of supporting architecture schools with modeling Labs which allows students to actually model their designs and ideas not only through software programmes.“
The trip presented the students with the opportunity to exchange ideas and be exposed to the research of their UK peers. BUiD’s efforts to ensure that higher education in the area of sustainability and architecture will be taken to new levels with its new bachelor in Architecture to be introduced in 2013. Providing local education of truly international calibre can only be sustained with the continuing support of government, business and industry.
“There is such synergy between Dubai and Cardiff, the UAE and Wales: just take a quick look at www.wales.gov.uk on the type of sustainability! It is hoped that the emirates’ key players in green building will both lead and listen to our students for furtherance of meaningful academic and professional collaboration and exchanges,” said Martin prince, Registrar at The British University in Dubai.
Tuesday, September 4- 2012 @ 12:36 UAE local time (GMT+4) Replication or redistribution in whole or in part is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Mediaquest FZ LLC.