29 January 2009

VCUQatar Announces Keynote Speaker and Qatar National Bank as a Sponsor for Mousharaka

Virginia Commonwealth University in Qatar in partnership with Icograda is proud to announce Ibrahim Jaidah as a keynote speaker for the Mousharaka conference. Mousharaka will take place at VCUQatar from 28 February to 5 March, 2009.

Ibrahim Jaidah acquired Arab Engineering bureau (AEB) in 1991 and has since been instrumental in the architectural development of Qatar and in presenting its image globally through major projects across all sectors. Each project retains the identity of Mr. Jaidah’s culture while embracing the modernity, and presenting its true potential. His vision is perhaps best seen in his design for The Barzan Towers, a high-rise office building of brilliant blue glass. The first nine floors reflect a traditional architectural style, while the twenty-one stories above evoke modernity. His passion for Arabic architecture is demonstrated throughout all of his projects and his first commission, the Al Dana Club, earned him his first nomination for the Aga Khan Award and the Arab Cities Award, first rank.

During the Mousharaka conference, Mr. Jaidah will discuss the importance of collaborative approaches in the design process while employing a number of working teams from different disciplines, using different technologies, and engaging different cultures from various countries in order to surface better results.

Ibrahim Jaidah graduated from the University of Oklahoma in 1988, and worked for Qatar’s Ministry of Municipal Affairs & Agriculture as head of the Architectural Section before acquiring AEB. He is committed to sharing his knowledge and experience with new generations of architects through the funding of scholarships at VCUQatar. He also serves as a guest speaker at universities and conferences throughout the region. In 2005 he received the Award for State Encouragement, which is given for career achievement, and serves as a testament to his central role in shaping Qatar’s future and that of architecture in the region. Mr. Jaidah is a pioneer of a new movement in architecture that combines the far-reaching influences of Islamic art with a modern style. AEB’s work has led to several awards, including two other Arab Cities Awards and one Islamic Cities Award. Mr. Jaidah will soon be publishing a book charting the history of Qatari Architecture, followed by a second book chronicling the evolution of the AEB architectural style.
VCUQatar is also proud to announce Qatar National Bank (QNB) as a sponsor for Mousharaka. This is the sixth consecutive year QNB is supporting VCUQatar’s annual design conference.
QNB was established in 1964 as the country’s first Qatari-owned commercial bank. QNB has since grown to become the largest bank in Qatar, controlling assets representing approximately 50% of the total banking system.

The bank provides a full range of commercial banking activities for individuals, corporate institutions and government entities and the bank’s scope of products, services and delivery channels across all disciplines are unrivalled. Additionally, QNB has been the recipient of the ‘Best Bank in Qatar’ award from leading internal financial publications including The Banker, Euromoney and Global Finance.  
QNB has the highest credit rating among Qatari banks from leading rating agencies including Moody’s, Fitch and Capital Intelligence. It is among the top 10 regional banks by shareholder’s equity.  Internationally it is ranked as 77th among the top 250 emerging market banks as per a Euromoney survey in August 2004.

Over the years, Virginia Commonwealth University in Qatar has demonstrated its commitment to design by successfully hosting the annual international design conference in the Middle East. This year VCUQatar presents Mousharaka / The Icograda Design Week in Qatar. It is composed of the Education Symposium and the Professional Conference, when prominent speakers share perspectives on design and design collaborations. VCUQatar is also spearheading the creation of MEDEA – the Middle East Design Educators Association and launching Design Debate Doha - an opportunity for the design community to address an important global design issue in debate form.

VCUQatar, with its state-of-the-art facilities will serve as the main venue for the conference. There will also be events hosted in Souk Waqif (a traditional bazaar), museums and select outdoor locations. For more information about Mousharaka, featured speakers and events, and to register please visit http://www.mousharaka.com/

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