A social-ecological perspective for emerging cities: The case of Corniche promenade, “urban majlis” of Doha

Raffaello Furlan, Michael Grosvald, Aamna Azad

Article ID: 1496
Vol 6, Issue 2, 2022

VIEWS - 687 (Abstract) 436 (PDF)


In the past decade, the capital city of Doha of the State of Qatar has experienced rapid urban expansion and other changes due to globalization, which has caused (i) the loss of a compact urban pattern, (ii) landscape fragmentation, and (iii) deficiency of green spaces. Therefore, as envisioned by Qatar National Vision 2030 (QNV-2030), the State of Qatar plans to invest substantial funds into the urban regeneration of the built environment, along with the development of large areas of public parks as a means of promoting more sustainable urban development and enhancing city residents’ well-being. Accessibility contributes to the usability of public facilities on the part of the neighborhood community, thus enhancing city dwellers’ well-being. Nonetheless, the authors argue, the urban network along Doha’s Corniche promenade, the dominant open public space and the spine of the city, lacks connectivity at various scales of space. Therefore, this research study aimed to assess the existing conditions of Doha’s Corniche and recommend strategies for implementing its integration into the newly emerging city’s urban fabric. The findings, revealed through a network-analysis investigation based on graph theory, allowed us to generate a framework for shaping open public spaces, promoting higher living standards through a green network system planned at the city scale. The proposed framework addresses social-ecological challenges of distinctive open public spaces and helps define an approach for (i) tailoring the accessibility of open public spaces to their surroundings, and (ii) enhancing city dwellers’ well-being.


sustainable development; open public space; social-ecological transdisciplinary perspective; green network system; well-being; graph theory; Corniche promenade (Doha)

Full Text:



Al-Harami A and Furlan R (2020). “Qatar National Museum-Transit oriented development: The masterplan for the urban regeneration of a ‘green TOD’.” Journal of Urban Management, 9(1): 115–136. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jum.2019.09.003

Al-Mohannadi A and Furlan R (2022). “The syntax of the Qatari traditional house: Privacy, gender segregation and hospitality constructing Qatar architectural identity.” Journal of Asian Architecture and Building Engineering, 21(2): 263–283. https://doi.org/10.1080/13467581.2020.1869555

Al-Mohannadi A, Furlan R and Grosvald M (2022). “Women’s spaces in the vernacular Qatari courtyard house: How privacy and gendered spatial segregation shape architectural identity.” Open House International. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1108/OHI-01-2022-0011

Al-Mohannadi A, Furlan R and Major MD (2020). “A cultural heritage framework for preserving Qatari vernacular domestic architecture.” Sustainability, 12(18): Art. 7295. https://doi.org/10.3390/su12187295

Al Saeed M and Furlan R (2019). “Transit-oriented development in West Bay, Business District of Doha, State of Qatar: A strategy for enhancing liveability and sense of place.” Journal of Cultural Heritage Management and Sustainable Development, 9(3): 394–429. https://doi.org/10.1108/JCHMSD-09-2018-0062

Artmann M, Bastian O and Grunewald K (2017). “Using the concepts of green infrastructure and ecosystem services to specify Leitbilder for compact and green cities—The example of the landscape plan of Dresden (Germany).” Sustainability, 9(2): Art. 198. https://doi.org/10.3390/su9020198

Bay JHP and Lehmann S (2017). Growing Compact-Urban Form, Density and Sustainability. Routledge.

Brown LJ and Dixon D (2014). Urban Design for an Urban Century-Shaping More Liveable, Equitable, and Resilient Cities. John Wiley & Sons.

Chaikhouni O (2012, April 26). “Qatar’s cultural hub.” Business Destinations.

de Oliveira FL (2017). Green Wedge Urbanism—History, Theory and Contemporary Practice. Bloomsbury Publishing.

Denzin NK and Lincoln YS (2011). The Sage Handbook of Qualitative Research. Sage Publications.

Fromherz AJ (2012). Qatar: A Modern History. I.B. Tauris.

_____ (2017). Qatar—Rise to Power and Influence. I.B. Tauris.

Furlan R (2019). “Qatar, Doha.” In: Pojani D et al. (Eds.), Parking: An International Perspective, pp. 169–178. Elsevier. https://doi.org/10.1016/B978-0-12-815265-2.00010-8

Furlan R and Al-Mohannadi A (2020). “An urban regeneration planning scheme for the Souq Waqif Heritage Site of Doha.” Sustainability, 12(19): Art. 7927. https://doi.org/10.3390/su12197927

Furlan R, Petruccioli A and Jamaleddin M (2019). “The authenticity of place-making: Space and character of the regenerated historic district in Msheireb, Downtown Doha (State of Qatar).” International Journal of Architectural Research—ArchNet-IJAR, 13(1): 151–168. http://doi.org/10.1108/ARCH-11-2018-0009

Furlan R, Petruccioli A, Major M, et al. (2019). “The urban regeneration of west-bay, business district of Doha (State of Qatar): A transit oriented development enhancing livability.” Journal of Urban Management, 8(1): 126–144. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jum.2018.10.001

Furlan R and Sinclair BR (2021). “Planning for a neighborhood and city-scale green network system in Qatar: The case of MIA Park.” Environment, Development and Sustainability, 23(10): 14933–14957. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10668-021-01280-9

Furlan R, Zaina S and Patel S (2021). “The urban regeneration’s framework for transit villages in Qatar: The case of Al Sadd in Doha.” Environment, Development and Sustainability, 23(4): 5920–5936. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10668-020-00853-4

Gehl J and Svarre B (2013). How to Study Public Life. Island Press. https://doi.org/10.5822/978-1-61091-525-0

Gottdiener M, Hohle R and King C (2019). The New Urban Sociology. Routledge. https://doi.org/10.4324/9780429244452

General Secretariat for Development (2008). Qatar National Vision 2030. General Secretariat for Development.

Gunay B (2003). Design Brief for Doha Corniche: Qatar’s Centre for Arts & Culture. Innovation Center for Design & Technology (INNOCENT).

Kabisch N and van den Bosch MA (2017). “Urban green spaces and the potential for health improvement and environmental justice in a changing climate.” In: Kabisch N et al. (Eds.), Nature-Based Solutions to Climate Change Adaptation in Urban Areas—Linkages Between Science, Policy and Practice, pp. 207–220. Springer. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-56091-5_12

Knowles RD and Ferbrache F (2019). Transit Oriented Development and Sustainable Cities: Economics, Community and Methods. Edward Elgar Publishing. https://doi.org/10.4337/9781788971713.00007

Lynch K (1981). A Theory of Good City Form. The MIT Press.

Marshall C and Rossman GB (2014). Designing Qualitative Research (3rd Ed.). Sage Publication.

McGregor JA (2008). Wellbeing, Poverty and Conflict (WeD Briefing Paper 1/08). ESRC Research Group on Wellbeing in Developing Countries.

McLennan JF (2004). The Philosophy of Sustainable Design. Ecotone Publishing.

Mell IC (2017). “Green infrastructure: Reflections on past, present and future praxis.” Landscape Research, 42(2): 135–145. https://doi.org/10.1080/01426397.2016.1250875

Molotch H and Ponzini D (2019). The New Arab Urban. Gulf Cities of Wealth, Ambition, and Distress. New York University Press.

Rizzo A (2014). “Rapid urban development and national master planning in Arab Gulf Countries. Qatar as a case study.” Cities, 39: 50–57. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cities.2014.02.005

Roberts P, Skyes H and Granger R (2017). Urban Regeneration. Sage Publications.


Salama A and Wiedman F (2013). Demystifying Doha. Ashgate Publishing.

Saliba R (2015). Urban Design in the Arab World: Reconceptualizing Boundaries. Ashgate. https://doi.org/10.4324/9781315548869

Scharfenort N (2012). “Urban development and social change in Qatar: The Qatar National Vision 2030 and the 2022 FIFA World Cup.” Journal of Arabian Studies, 2(2): 209–230. https://doi.org/10.1080/21534764.2012.736204

Secchi B (2007). Prima Lezione di Urbanistica [First Lesson in Urban Planning]. Editori Laterza.

Šiljeg L, Marić I, Nikolić G and Šiljeg A (2018). “Accessibility analysis of urban green spaces in the settlement of Zadar in Croatia.” Sumarski List, 142(9–10): 487–497. http://doi.org/10.31298/sl.142.9-10.4

Tan PY, Wang J and Sia A (2013). “Perspectives on five decades of the urban greening of Singapore.” Cities, 32: 24–32. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cities.2013.02.001

Tannous HO, Furlan R and Major MD (2020). “Souq Waqif neighborhood as a transit-oriented development”. Journal of Urban Planning and Development, 146(4): Art. 05020023. https://doi.org/10.1061/(asce)up.1943-5444.0000615

Tannous HO, Major MD and Furlan R (2021). “Accessibility of green spaces in a metropolitan network using space syntax to objectively evaluate the spatial locations of parks and promenades in Doha, State of Qatar.” Urban Forestry & Urban Greening, 58: Art. 126892. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ufug.2020.126892

van Kamp I, Leidelmeijer K, Marsman G and de Hollander A (2003). “Urban environmental quality and human well-being: Towards a conceptual framework and demarcation of concepts; a literature study.” Landscape and Urban Planning, 65(1–2): 5–18. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0169-2046(02)00232-3

WHO Regional Office for Europe (2016). Urban Green Spaces—A Review of Evidence. WHO Regional Office for Europe.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.24294/jipd.v6i2.1496


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Copyright (c) 2022 Raffaello Furlan, Michael Grosvald,Aamna Azad

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.

This site is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.