Abu Dhabi University (ADU) recently organised its first international urban planning conference.
The conference was organised by the university’s Department of Architecture and Design under the theme, 'Constructing an urban future: The sustainability and resilience of cities including infrastructure, communities, and architecture'.
Speakers at the two-day event included Eike Sindlinger, associate at Arup's Integrated City Planning Unit in London, and Professor Shams Eldien Naga, founder of Naga Architects, headquartered in Dubai.
The conference was attended by researchers, government officials, architects, and designers as well as ADU students and faculty.
The event addressed some of the common challenges surrounding urban planning in an era of migration and displacement of populations, rapid urbanization and dramatic surges in the global population, a press release said.
Dr Mohammad Elkaftangui, assistant professor, Architecture and Interior Design at Abu Dhabi University, said, "The two-day conference highlighted some of the key global challenges faced by people in urban environments such as population growth, urban sprawl, pollution, and congestion. The experts outlined that a multi-sectoral approach needs to be implemented in achieving the priority areas of urban planning, which include energy efficient buildings, urban mobility with reliable and affordable public transportation, clean energy generation from local sources, waste management and resource recovery, among others.
"This event has been a revelation to our students and served as a platform for the experts and stakeholders to network and share best practices and stay up-to-date with new developments in the field. Our students have benefitted considerably from this learning experience outside the classrooms. Events such as this one allow them to understand the real-life challenges in this dynamic sector."