El Mina, Lebanon

2020 - 2022


Partners: UCL PROCOL Lebanon; RELIEF Centre; Institute for Global Prosperity 
Collaborators: El-Mina municipality; Citizen Scientists: Abdel Karim Janki, Alaa El Merehby, Amina Saad, Aya Ashram, Bassem Zawdeh, Ghassan El Bakri, Heba El Haji, Hiba Chaarani, Houda Kabbara, Mahmoud Sleiman, Maya Chalabi, Mohammad Kanoun, Mohammad Said Khalaf, Sageda Moubarak, Sara Badawiyeh, Sara Coptan, Taha Mersalli, and Ziad El Hayek
Funding: UK’s Economic and Social Research Council; the British Academy

The project explored what prosperity means for people and how it can be achieved inclusively to benefit all residents of El Mina, a coastal city located in the North Governorate of Lebanon. 

We adopted a participatory approach where data was collected by citizen scientists (local researchers) and used to develop urban interventions that address their own community’s needs and to create positive change in the neighbourhoods. We recruited 18 citizen scientists who were an integral part of the research process. They provided consultations to prepare surveys, and played an active role in conducting the data collection, analysing it. 

The data collection phase included an infrastructure survey, a building condition survey, household surveys, qualitative interviews, and focus group discussions. The household survey sampled 1,023 households across 22 neighbourhoods in El Mina: in both Mina 3 and Mina Jardins cadastres.

To address some of the challenges to prosperity in the city of El Mina we tailored a participatory spatial intervention which harnessed the potential of the corniche, a sea promenade, as a public space for everyone. We also hosted a town hall meeting to present the research back to the community, key stakeholders and local authorities and discuss together how the research data can inform future projects in El Mina.

“The training I received really helped me gain confidence in engaging people in my city, gaining their trust and hearing about their life experiences."

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