SIGUS: Special Interest Group in Urban Settlement
Aleppo, Syria, 1997

A Two-week Training Workshop for the Aleppo Action Area Two. Hosted by the City of Aleppo, Syria, and the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Tech-nische Zusammenarbeit (GTZ) Summer 1999.

This workshop is an example of a rapid, field-based, action-oriented training workshop. The goal was to sensitize to the different perspectives of the stakeholders, to explore different ways of identifying and addressing problems, and in general to develop an awareness and sensitivity to the area which would help them in their professional work.

Participants were practicing professionals from a cross-section of disciplines dealing with urban improvement: planners, architects, engineers, economists, and sociologists.

The format was highly interactive requiring hands-on participation. It is not structured in a lecture format but relies on the participants' experience and on-the-spot field surveys. Charts - simple yet powerful - were used to structure the participants' inputs and became the primary product of the workshop. They proved to be very effective in framing issues, capturing ideas and exploring creative alternatives.

The workshop was held over a 10-day period on-site in the old city of Aleppo.