The interactive workshop, conducted by Dr. Esam Elsarrag (Director of Research & Development, GORD) aimed to inform and empower sustainability practitioners with the necessary tools and means to address and implement ‘best practice’ over the course of the construction phase towards sustainable construction methods to minimize the negative impacts associated with construction requirements, processes and on-site practices.
The workshop participants represented various stakeholders involved in the ongoing construction of mega projects in Qatar. Speaking about the workshop and about the GSAS certification process overall, many participants appreciated the dynamic methodologies used for explanation including actual examples and demonstration of procedures.
A team of senior sustainability professionals from the Supreme Committee of Delivery and Legacy also attended the GSAS Construction Management workshop and expressed full confidence in the role of GSAS in achieving the sustainability standards of QV2030. Here are some of the comments taken from the attendees:
"I find GSAS to be very forward thinking. With initiatives like this, the Gulf region has definitely got the ambition and desire to become sustainable and like all emerging markets, it's undergoing the process of implementation at all levels. The contractors have to be educated, the professionals to be trained and the clients also need to fully understand what all they will be able to achieve; and workshops like this is the best way to articulate this sustainability message and to spread the word. I find it very informative. There's been an enormous change in the construction industry over the last decade in terms of a shift towards sustainability. It's already had a major impact in the West and it is beginning to have a big impact in this region also, with large infrastructural projects in progress in the UAE and here in Qatar which is very positive because sustainability is the future and the right way to go." Rafik Bodhanya
"In my view, GSAS is very crucial for each one of our projects because we are talking about the legacy of a country here. We need to build buildings that are sustainable for the times to come. This is not just about any specific time period or event, it is a change that is already shaping up and will continue and everyone needs to work towards it collectively. We progressed a lot in the last decade with many projects already GSAS certified and I'm sure over the next few years, after studying data from these, GORD will be able to come up with newer, updated studies and standards as this is a continuous learning process. Our common objective is to choose what's best for the country and for the world and the environment overall. The government sector is already implementing these sustainable options and I think the private sector is also looking at GSAS because be it a hotel or amusement park or any commercial building; making it sustainable will only help them maintain their business for a longer period of time." Khalifa Al Mana
"I am an architect working with Dar Al Handsah Consultants based in Jordan and I did my CGP training in Oman. I Found GSAS to be very practical and personalized for the region. It is taught in a very interesting way like this workshop is very engaging. Also, a lot of material is accessible through the website where I go to check updates and related news and views. I see the system evolving with newer topics and courses and trainings like this one to address the growing needs as we can see more and more projects in the region are adapting GSAS." Majeda Sultan Hattar
"We are working on the Doha Metro Red Line and I did my CGP training about 18 months ago. Working in the local construction industry, I think these trainings are definitely a valuable qualification since every major project is signed up with GSAS and it seems to be the way forward. And since we're all working with the same system, it is a good platform for industry professionals to interact and share practices and experiences. Recently, I noticed the website of GORD. It's very nice with interesting stories featuring different perspectives from professionals. Also, I received information about their sustainability journal which is a great initiative." Sarhan Bin Haris
"I liked the way this workshop was conducted with examples from local context. It's informative and interesting as well to learn from Dr. Esam with his experience and authority on this subject. It is a complex process to go through the certification process and you need to understand each category in detail and having an interaction like this workshop helps for sure to have this understanding. The concept of sustainability is relatively new in this region and the industry is definitely benefitting at various levels when we study these aspects and implement in designing, construction or maintenance stages and I would say GSAS has been an important step in the progression of construction industry in Qatar and the region". Vicente A. Milan
"We are working on the Qatar Metro Green Line, doing the MEP design and we also have the CGP role for both Design & Build and Construction Management. I find GSAS Certification quite challenging and also very interesting. These updates and training sessions are very helpful because GSAS is a constantly evolving process so these workshops are very much looked forward to and I'm here to get this information and updates so we have guidance and can deliver efficiently. It is great to be involved with such a dynamic organization like GORD." Jan Salmond, Senior Mechanical Engineer, Hoare Lea Qatar LLC
Towards the end of the workshop, Dr Esam updated the CGPs on multiple additional platforms offered by GORD for close coordination and recognition within the sustainability community such as:
and the upcoming Region's Leading Exhibition for Sustainable Solutions Green Expo 2017