On 03 December 2019, the Roundtable Workshop on “Sustainable Urban Transformation” took place at the Cambodia-Korea Cooperation Centre. The Roundtable Workshop aimed at the consolidation of the scientific research strategy for the definition phase of Build4People’s work package #6, “Sustainable Urban Transformation”.
Local organisers were Dr. Serey Sok from the Research Office of the Royal University of Phnom Penh (RUPP), Dr. Seak Sophat, Program Coordinator of the Master of Science in Climate Change and Dr. Thy Naroeun, Dean of the Faculty of Sociology.
The opening remarks were given by Dr. Vanny Sok, Vice-Rector of RUPP, who highlighted the potential support of the Build4People project to the implementation of RUPP’s “Strategic Plan 2019-2023”.
Thereafter, Dr. Michael Waibel, Build4People consortium leader and leader of the Work Package “Sustainable Urban Transformation” from Hamburg University, gave a general introduction to the project and set out the rationale for doing research in this emerging scientific field.
Ravi Jayaweera, research associate from the University of Hamburg, then introduced the theoretical framework of Work Package #6 and presented current discussions and the state of arts in urban sustainability transitions research.
This was followed by a lively Q&A session. Participants raised questions regarding the role of the urban youth and the geographical scale of the planned interventions.
Subsequently, Dr. Seak Sophat presented past and ongoing activities of RUPP in the field of environmental governance research and a track record of cooperation with international institutions.
The Roundtable Workshop was concluded by a vibrant panel discussion, amongst others with Dr. Eng Netra, Senior Researcher at the Cambodian Development Resource Institute (CDRI) and Mr. Hash Chanly, Researcher at the Institute of Technology of Cambodia.
A key question covered the participants’ definitions of urban quality of life and how these can be connected to a sustainable urban transformation. It was also highlighted that different social groups can have different – and possibly conflicting – quality of life priorities.
The Roundtable Workshop was thus a successful event that fully served its purpose to introduce the research approach of the Work Package “Sustainable Urban Transformation” while simultaneously consolidating bi-lateral partner structures.
Further Impressions of the Work Package #6 Round Table Workshop on “Sustainable Urban Transformation”: