Dubai students join global sustainability conversations

May 25, 2018

Innovative thinkers: Two of the four Murdoch Dubai students who have joined global sustainability talks

Murdoch Dubai students have featured in the first of 50 global think-tanks delving into sustainability, the environment and the power of art and culture to discover new conservation opportunities.

The four students were selected for the World Maljis series, designed to promote innovative thinking and practical solutions in the lead-up to Dubai’s World Expo 2020.

Deeply rooted in the Emirati and Arab tradition of the majlis – an Arabic term meaning “place of sitting” – some of Dubai’s brightest minds have been selected for the in-depth conversations, which link into the World Expo theme of ‘Connecting minds, Creating the Future’.

A majlis is a highly valued meeting space where people gather to gain different perspectives and share informed opinions to help shape decisions on subjects that matter to their communities.

Thought leaders from various government, professional, academic and cultural backgrounds will take part the in-depth discussions about global issues.

Murdoch students Graeme Philip Smit, Bianca Greyvenstein, Vrushabh Chotalia and Owaish Mustafa participated the first majlis, titled ‘Sustainability Through New Eyes’, held in Abu Dhabi’s cultural hub of Saadiyat Island.

They were among 14 students and two academics from five universities who joined 17 industry and cultural leaders in discussing how industry can mitigate its environmental impact while pursuing economic growth.

The first World Majlis also explored how consumers can be transformed into responsible citizens by changing the way we think about consumption and how the power of art and culture can help shift the focus of conversations about sustainability from loss to opportunity.

Murdoch University's Dubai Dean, Dr James Trotter, said the Murdoch students were chosen after impressing Expo 2020 judges with their creative thinking, problem-solving ability, and collaboration skills.

“This is a great opportunity for the Murdoch University Dubai students to have a presence at these important discussions and to combine hands-on learning with their academic studies,” he said. “Expo 2020 is committed to the idea that youth must be at the heart developing solutions to global problems.

“The tradition of the majlis allows open conversation to happen. Our students are excited that they get to participate, comment and be part of the process in the build-up to Expo 2020.”

The World Majlis sessions are bringing together current and future thought leaders from a range of backgrounds including government, technology, science, art, culture, media and literature.

More than 50 sessions will take place in the lead-up to 2020 and during the six months of Expo 2020, both in the UAE and abroad.

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Media contact: Connie Clarke
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Comments (2 responses)

Keary Shandler May 27, 2018

A wonderful opportunity to participate in dialogue at this level. Well done.

Carol Pinto May 28, 2018

This is fantastic!

Well done, Graeme, Bianca, Vrushabh and Owaish. You make us proud!

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