By Yakin Ouederni
AUC’s centennial labs tackle everything from innovation and education to technology and architecture
Wire-based additive manufacturing, or 3D printing, in the lab enables the manufacture and repair of medium-to-large, metallic net-shaped parts and components with high precision, high mechanical properties, high cost savings, high efficiency and sustainability, and a high production rate compared to traditional manufacturing. This technology is applicable in various industries, including aviation, automotive, marine, oil and gas, tools and molds, and biomedical implants. This is the first integrated metal additive manufacturing robotic system locally and regionally.
At a time when Egypt’s archaeological and cultural heritage is threatened by looting and destruction, this lab helps meet the needs of heritage practitioners through the integration of technology into their training to ensure that Egypt’s rich cultural heritage is digitally documented — leading to better preservation and easier accessibility. The lab also facilitates the development of new courses and provides technical support for updating existing ones.
Behavioral and Economic Decision-Making Lab
This is the first experimental economics lab in Egypt and North Africa and the second in the Arab region. Experimental economics labs provide a way to collect data in a controlled environment. The lab at AUC has three domains: academic through multidisciplinary and international research collaborations, applied research and experiential learning; public policy through implementation and testing for policy interventions; and business and NGOs through management, marketing, engagement and capacity building.
Interdisciplinary Centennial Lab for Innovation and Technology in Education
Established by AUC’s Graduate School of Education, this lab addresses key issues faced by students and teachers in Egypt relating to technological, socioeconomic and geographic barriers to learning. The lab is built on the concept of “inclusive and equitable quality education,” the fourth of the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals, and is intended to reach teachers and students in public schools, as well as rural and remote areas.
Bioinformatics and Integrative Genomics (BIG)
Advances in DNA sequencing technologies have led to the generation of astronomical volumes of genetic information, posing major challenges to data analysis and interpretation. The BIG lab provides AUC faculty, researchers, students, and national and international collaborators with the skill set and computational power needed to answer genomic-based research questions, from precision medicine, environmental health, water quality and food safety to renewable and sustainable energy.
NextARCH Lab is an architecture and urbanism research incubator focused on bridging the gap between academia and industry in Egypt. It creates an ecosystem of high-quality research that can compete in the global market. Studying architecture and urbanism in Egypt, the lab serves as a channel for engaging academia and industry in meaningful dialogue that leads to tangible solutions for the urgent urban challenges confronting our cities today.
Conducting cutting-edge research in computational and networking systems, this lab explores contemporary topics in computer science and engineering, such as blockchain technology, mobile and pervasive computing systems, and cybersecurity. These tracks will cater to emerging applications in health care, bioinformatics, smart cities, green systems, information and communications technology and Industry 4.0 (industry automation), among others.
The Middle East Institute for Higher Education at AUC’s Graduate School of Education, in partnership with the School of Business, created this lab to serve as an incubator for education directorates in each of Egypt’s 27 governorates, supporting the Ministry of Education’s decentralization efforts to transform Egypt’s public education system — the largest in the Middle East and Africa. The lab empowers education leaders to promote school-based reform, teacher autonomy, and student-centered and active learning.
Alternative Innovation Management
AUC’s Access to Knowledge for Development Center launched this lab to develop alternative methods for measuring innovation in developing countries, as innovation in these regions does not usually fall into orthodox measures. Innovation is typically assessed using criteria such as patents and university degrees, leaving out informal aspects in developing countries, such as informal skill development and alternate methods of intellectual property protection. Through evidence-based studies, the lab works to present its findings to policymakers and inform national innovation policy in Egypt and the region.
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