The Beirut Urban Lab is a research hub based in the Masters' in urban planning, policy and design programs. The aim of this lab is three-fold. First, the lab seeks to develop interdisciplinary knowledge of Lebanon’s ongoing urbanization by documenting and analyzing ongoing transformation processes in the natural and built environments. Second, the lab seeks to engage local decision-makers, researchers, professionals, and activists as an advocate of better urban livability, resilience, and sustainability. Third, the lab seeks to intervene as an interlocutor and contributor to academic debates about southern urbanization.
An initiative by faculty members in the MUPP/MUD programs, the urban lab has explored topics as diverse as youth and urban activism, urban policies, governance and informality, forced population displacements, forms and models of urban social movements, the financialization of land, and the securitization of public space. Research is supported by local and international donors with close to $1M worth of grants over the past five years.
Mona Fawaz, Mona Harb, Ahmad Gharbieh, Howayda Al-Harithy