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ISN’T IT SOMEWHAT SURPRISING THAT WE HAVE SUCH A LARGE COMMUNITY OF DESIGNERS IN LEBANON, AND YET VERY FEW ARE THINKING ABOUT SUSTAINABILITY IN THEIR DESIGN PROCESS? THE PROTESTS OF SUMMER 2015, CENTERED AROUND THE WASTE MANAGEMENT CRISIS IN LEBANON, WAS A WAKE-UP CALL FOR MANY OF US, ESPECIALLY THE TEAM MEMBERS OF MENA DESIGN RESEARCH CENTER, AND THE SURROUNDING COMMUNITY MEMBERS OF BEIRUT DESIGN WEEK. We, as designers and architects, are influencers. We have the ability to change behaviors and business ethics with the audiences who buy our products and engage in our communications, as well as the businesses who use our services. If packaging designers convinced food and beverage industries to use biodegradable packaging, and brand managers informed the public of its importance to the environment, we would see massive change in waste production. If more designers and architects introduced organic waste in their processes or created innovative ways to recycle materials, we would import less from abroad and convince the public to sort their waste and facilitate such processes. Although in the context of Lebanon, such ideas might sound idealistic or even radical, when we see thousands of people engaging with the theme of Beirut Design Week 2016, the idea does not seem impossible. We are proud of our design community for taking on the challenge of sustainability as part of Beirut Design Week 2016. We hope that this would be the beginning of an on-going endeavor for most. We also hope that the audience will think a bit more seriously about their role as consumers and contribute towards more sustainable lifestyles in their environments. In this feature, we are celebrating all the projects that MENA Design Research Center developed in order to integrate sustainability in Beirut Design Week. These projects include the visual communication of BDW2016, the development of the first central location KED, the Sustainable Design Program, and the research work on the design industry and economy in Lebanon. We hope that as a non-profit organization, our values and goals are represented in the following pages; which are for us recent achievements that we have been able to finally establish after five years in operation. Sincerely, DOREEN TOUTIKIAN, Co-founder & Director, Beirut Design Week President of the Board, MENA Design Research Center

Profile for MENA Design Research Center

Beirut Design Week 2016: FEATURE  

Beirut Design Week 2016: FEATURE  

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