Middle East Cooperation (MEC) Network

The Cooperation Network between the Universities of Aleppo, Alexandria, Bagdad, Beirut, Cairo, Damascus and Cottbus aims an intensive professional exchange and teamwork for Master-students and lecturers in the subjects of architecture and urban planning. During the Cooperation, professional exchange and teamwork should be intensified step by step. It is the objective to develop an effective, clearly arranged and institutionally fixed multilateral cooperation between with partners in the network.

The professional focus was put on Urban Design, the most important intersection between architecture and urban planning. Thereby concentrates the cooperation on renewal and strengthening of the development of historic city centers. Germany, and hereby especially the eastern federal states, held outstanding expertise and competences concerning the renewal and strengthening of historic city quarters. The faculty of architecture, civil engineering and urban planning at the BTU in Cottbus focuses on these topics since its establishment in 1992. Renewal and strengthening of historic quarters within the inner cities in the partner-universities’ countries in the Middle East generates, depending from their historic and contemporary situation, a special challenge for urban development-policies. This thesis, that forms a foundation for the since 2003 developed Cooperation, was verified by the various cooperation-activities in the recent years. Accordingly organized Summer Schools and Urban Design Workshops in Damascus 2006, Cairo 2007, Beirut 2009, Aleppo 2010 and Cottbus 2011 proved the value of these exchanges.