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Sustainable camps: self-organising design in community centres
Jönköping University, School of Education and Communication, HLK, Learning Practices inside and outside School (LPS), Sustainability Education Research (SER). Centre for Middle Eastern Studies, Lund University.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-8423-1938
2017 (English)Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Palestinian refugee camps were formed in Lebanon after 1948, and are today home to approximately half a million inhabitants. Estimates are highly uncertain, since many refugees live in Lebanon informally, due to stringent Lebanese residency regulations and the massive crisis in neighbouring Syria. Besides the Palestinians newly arriving from Syria, camp populations have been swollen by the general crisis, pushing migrant workers and poor Lebanese to seek the cheapest possible accommodation. 

Camp conditions were difficult already before the recent war, but have dramatically worsened. The pressure on infrastructure and housing has multiplied, due to the sudden increase in population. Conditions are further affected by the pressures on power and water supplies outside the camps. At the same time, restricted livelihoods and skyrocketing prices of materials leave little resources to proceed with necessary upgrades and maintenance of facilities and the built environment. Desperate homeless families are prepared to live in buildings that are compromised and unsafe, since they have no other options. At the same time, poor infrastructure leads to a vicious circle, since local workshops that could provide livelihoods also depend on access to transport, power supplies, water, and effective management of wastewater, waste and fumes to minimise environmental impacts.Sustainable camps is a project initiated by the Centre for Middle Eastern Studies at Lund University in collaboration with community centres at Beddawi and Bourj-el-Barajneh, aiming to address the dual need for education and improved living conditions in the camps in Lebanon. Existing community centres will be used as hubs for learning, training and innovation. Young people living in the camps will collaborate with students in Lebanon and abroad to develop low-cost and environmentally friendly solutions to the local infrastructure challenges, in the context of carrying out necessary repairs and upgrades. Interconnecting centres in different camps allows sharing knowledge and know-how.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017.
Keyword [en]
refugee camps, Lebanon, sustainable infrastructure, participatory research, refugee higher education, livelihoods, Design for sustainability, community capacity building
National Category
Social and Economic Geography
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hj:diva-38538OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hj-38538DiVA: diva2:1174397
Conference
Cities, Communities and Homes Is the Urban Future Liveable? Amps, University of Derby, June 22 – 23
Available from: 2018-01-15 Created: 2018-01-15 Last updated: 2018-01-15Bibliographically approved

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Avery, Helen

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  • apa
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