“Culture Walks” is the first phase of SAWP (Spaces for Arts, Welfare and Progress) strategy conducted within a partnership between Urbego and ElMadina and supported by the Tandem Shaml and Idea Camp programs. This collaboration project between Europe and the Arab world worked on exploring new venues in the Alexandrian neighborhood, Karmouz, to promote them as spaces for arts and culture.
SAWP is a strategic concept initiated in 2013 by ElMadina. SAWP aims to support creative economies of culture, which can assist sustainable development and raise citizens’ awareness on how to use local resources for start-up social enterprises and social image enhancement. Urbego supported and facilitated the implementation of the strategy's first step by delivering an urban expertise on cultural mapping and neighborhood potential analysis drawing, thus, a possible “open-up” strategy, and promoting a valuable image of Karmouz.
The central question of this book is about how culture and human potentials can become a tool to empower the local community and a way for visitors to discover the character of the place through “Culture walks” itineraries. These pages are the result of this collaborative exchange. A work based on a participatory workshop that took place in Alexandria in April 2016 and involved 25 participants from 5 different southern and northern Mediterranean countries (Egypt, Lebanon, France, Greece, and Italy). The participants had different professional backgrounds ranging from architects, urban planners, artists, researchers, civil society activists. It also involved inhabitants of Karmouz neighborhood, and community-based organizations such as ElSarh Association.
“Culture walks” is the first step in a strategy called SAWP (Spaces for arts, welfare and progress) supported by the Tandem Shaml program.