Beirut Arab University participated in the 16th International Conference on Urban Health (ICUH 2019) which was held between the 4th and 8th of November 2019 in Xiamen city - China. The theme for ICUH 2019 is People Oriented Urbanization: Transforming Cities for Health and Well-Being.
Beirut Arab University (BAU) organized several academic activities within the Urban Health and Well-Being theme in the previous two years, prominently the UHWB2018 international conference that was held at BAU campus as well as inviting experts in this field.
Beirut Arab University was represented at ICUH 2019 by Prof. Ibtihal El-Bastawissi, Dean of the Faculty of Architecture – Design & Built Environment, Prof. Rajaa Fakhoury, Dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences, and Dr Hiba Mohsen, Assistant Professor at the Faculty of Architecture – Design & Built Environment. BAU delegates participated through plenary and parallel sessions, interactive workshops and pre-formed panels.
Moreover, ICUH 2019 was an opportunity to BAU to meet experts from various sectors and disciplines and to expand research and projects networks.
Dean Prof. El-Bastawissi was invited as a speaker and panelist within the Plenary Session on theme 6: Liveable Urban Environments, Urban Planning, and Design. In her presentation “Cultivation of community based Interventions in Architectural Education at BAU”, Prof. El-Bastawissi provided real case studies demonstrating how Community-academia partnerships promote positive social and urban change by developing innovative initiatives and researches and transforming them into real applications to the profit of the community and supporting decision-makers, highlighting its impact on urban health. Prof. El-Bastawissi was also participated in “Healthy Cities for Adolescents” interactive workshop organized by Botnar Foundation.
Dean Prof. Rajaa Fakhoury was a speaker within the Plenary Session on theme 4: Emerging Diseases, Healthcare, and Public Services. In her presentation “The clinical implications of screening Sarcopenic Obesity”, Prof. Fakhoury discussed the assessment of the prevalence of Sarcopenic Obesity in a clinical sample composed of patients with overweight and obesity; and investigated any potential association between the former and cardiovascular diseases, Type 2 diabetes, and dyslipidemia.
BAU also organized a pre-formed panel entitled BAU UrbanLab: A New Collaborative, Knowledge-Generation Approach for Urban Health which was chaired by Prof. Ibtihal El-Bastawissi and presented by Prof. Ibtihal El-Bastawissi, Prof. Rajaa Fakhoury, Dr Hiba Mohsen. PHD candidate Jieling Liu from the Institute of Social Sciences - University of Lisbon also joined this pre-formed panel with a presentation entitled: The European Stories: Citizens in Urban Labs – reasons, good practices, and Inspirations for Asian Cities. The preformed panel emphasized the potential of BAU Urban lab as a community anchor for data generating and co-designing using technological collaborative tools in order to overcome complex urban challenges.
In addition, BAU participated in the parallel session at ICUH2019 by presenting a research entitled: Partial System Analysis of Traffic Noise Reduction in Tarik Al Jadidah, Beirut, Lebanon. This work was part of a previous workshop held at BAU on January 2019 and led by Prof. Franz Gatzweiler, Executive director of the ISC-IAP-UNU which aims to identify the key variables affecting traffic noise reduction system and their mutual impacts using Vester Sensitivity Model; a computerized planning and management tool for complex systems.
For future collaborations, Prof. Dr. Yongguan Zhu, Director General, Institute of Urban Environment, Chinese Academy of Sciences and Prof. Franz Gatzweiler, will be invited to BAU for further development of BAU Urban Lab.