MIDAS at URBAN MELA by MOD Institute Berlin in Chennai

MOD Institute, an international collective of architects, designers researchers, curators and practitioners with engaged interests in urbanisation process in india had organised discussion sessions on critical urban challenges on the topics ‘Our Water’, ‘Our Waste’ and ‘Our City’ as a part of the ‘Chennai Urban Campus’ during the Indo-German Urban Mela at the YMCA grounds Nandhanam.  Mr.Tile Von Damn, political scientist at the MOD Institute invited Professor.Jaffer A A Khan, Director-MIDAS to moderate the session on  ‘Our Waste’ on the 30th August 2012.
Prof.Jaffer A A Khan established the context of the discussion highlighting the concerns of waste generated in the city and the onus on the citizens towards reducing the same and invited the speakers to present their views.
Ms.Karin Sandeck, Bayerische Oberste, Baubehorde, Munich presented her experience and the practices of Urban Waste Management System of Germany. The presentation deliberated on the successful reduction in waste generation by imposing payment systems to the citizens for disposing the waste generated by them.  Ms Kristin Stegar from the Indo German Centre for Sustainability, IIT Madras, Chennai presented on the Waste management system developed and successfully implemented within the Indian Institute of Technology Campus in Chennai. Prof.Jaffer concluded the session highlighting the Indian traditional values and the culture which has always embodied sustainable in the lifestyle of the people.
The presentations were followed by an enriching discussion session with active participation from faculty and students of MIDAS. Architect Balaji, Assistant Professor – MIDAS, shared his experiences on working with the rural communities and the need to create awareness at the community level in enforcing their rights through the local bodies. Ms.Shwetha, II year student of MIDAS elaborated the initiatives of the ‘ECO CLUB’ at the college campus at Swarnabhoomi on waste reduction, reuse of waste material and the ‘Square Foot Gardening’ ventures.
Apposite to the topic of discussion, the Director, Faculty and the Students of MIDAS presented a 4’x4’ mural out of waste material to Mr.Karl  Pechatscheck– Director, Gothe Institute. Mr.Karl and Ms.Senya Muller, Gothe Institute also appreciated the student volunteers of MIDAS for their week long involvement in the workshops titled ‘Dream Ciry in the Clouds’ during the Chennai Urban Mela.

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