Involvement of University Educational Sector in the Decision-Making Process regarding Integrated Waste Management Systems in the Emirate of Dubai
About 100 participants from 5 different universities were consulted and involved in the decision-making process of developing best waste management practices to preserve the surrounding environment and ensure high quality of populations life. The main consulted universities were based in Dubai. However, it is planned in the second forum to involve more universities all over the country which have interests in the subject of environmental resources management, including waste management problems and solutions.
In light of the great development of the Emirate of Dubai as the largest business centre in the Middle East, the rapid increase in the numbers of population, the rapid urbanization, and the fast-paced industrial growth are considered as the major factors which have led to increase the waste management – based problems. This in turn necessitated setting out a comprehensive strategy and a systematic plan to involve the community in the decision-making processes regarding integrated waste management in the Emirate. Hence, the university educational sector is one of the important sectors that should be consulted and involved in this matter. So, the suggestion was applied through the e-suggestion system and was accepted accordingly. Then, the internal administrative decree came out to form the supporting scientific innovation team in 2016 on the waste management department level.
In the line with the directives of his highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the president of the UAE, that 2016 is to be the reading year in the country, and based on the aspirations of the senior leadership of Dubai Municipality towards the adoption of these directives. The head of the treatment systems unit, Eng. Sadin Al Falasi has submitted a suggestion through the governmental e-suggestion system to adopt a scientific forum/gathering with the educational institutions in the Emirate for discussion of the most haunting problems regarding waste management and to take a feedback from them in terms of scientific research point of view. Preparatory meetings were hold, and then the visits organized for some selected universities which are interested in the subject of waste management. Finally, after completing all the necessary steps and discussions, the first scientific innovation forum was organized and hold in April, 2016.
This initiative is considered innovative since it is the first experience of its kind in the country. Different universities were involved in this initiative to present their proposals to overcome the most crucial and haunting problems in the waste management sector. It is the first time on the Emirate level/scale which theory and practice could be combined to explore the best solutions and practices in the field of integrated waste management. Finally, these types of initiatives enhance the role of the partnership between the educational institutions and the governmental departments.
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