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Mon, Nov 08


Online Event

DDRL Roundtable | 1

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DDRL Roundtable | 1
DDRL Roundtable | 1

Time & Location

Nov 08, 2021, 6:00 PM GMT+3 – Nov 10, 2021, 7:00 PM GMT+3

Online Event

About the Event

Kuwait development policies have encouraged unsustainable and inequitable patterns of growth. These include disparities in living condition between residents and nationals, higher levels of motorization, deteriorated air quality, dependence on non-renewable sources of energy and urban sprawl. Limited alternative modes of public transport persist as reliance on private vehicles continues, discouraging any real change to the existing inefficient and inaccessible public transportation network. What started as a symbol of modernity in all its spectacular guises, the car has turned very quickly into a source of discord in our everyday lives. Traffic has increased, resulting in much longer daily commutes, road congestion, higher levels of Co2 emissions, record breaking temperatures and a general apathy towards public space. Exponential population growth has magnified these challenges along with a local construction industry that requires significant overhaul to integrate latest technologies and waste management plans. As one of the main contributors of waste, this industry has encouraged a throwaway mentality as the existing building stock, including 20th century heritage buildings, is routinely demolished. 

As experts in the various design fields, we aim to contribute solutions to these challenges. With a paucity in open-source research and data, the Design Development & Research Lab (DDRL) is set to provide much needed accessible data and evidence-based solutions. The DDRL comes at the request of the departments at the College of Architecture at Kuwait University with three dedicated units: Housing and Urban Development, Digital Fabrication and Visualization. The 3-day event will discuss research in these three domains and explore potential overlaps and collaborations with local and international centers and experts. Bridging between the DDRL and existing best practices and experiences is the goal of the research lab. We will explore some of the priority research areas for the different units and examine catalysts and challenges that connect academia and practice. This first installment of roundtable discussions is as much an introduction to the DDRL as a brainstorming session, guided by “curated questions.” The questions are general musings that will help us navigate possible strategies and tools for research, ultimately steering an alternative method of teaching and learning in the design disciplines. One of the overarching questions across the three days examines how the DDRL can be a catalyst for curriculum change and development. It is important to note that the DDRL is situated in an academic institution and the goal of its founders is a pedagogical shift where theory is complemented by real life experiences and practices that can effect change. Another overarching theme is the way in which the DDRL can become part of an existing network of researchers and labs both locally and abroad. Inter and intra academic and design practice silos limit knowledge productivity as well as capacity building and locating ourselves within this field is one of the DDRL goals. We hope the discussions will work towards greater collaboration and inclusion and we look forward to the conversations that will take place over the three-day period.


  • 10 minutes

    Day 1 | Introduction

  • 5 minutes

    Day 1 | Web presence

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