Global Grad Show kicks off with diverse student innovations

Updated 12 November 2019

Global Grad Show kicks off with diverse student innovations

  • The 5th edition of Global Grad Show at Dubai Design Week kicked off on Tuesday with a showcase of more than 150 student innovations from around the world
  • The most diverse edition to date features projects from more than 100 universities

DUBAI: The 5th edition of Global Grad Show at Dubai Design Week kicked off on Tuesday with a showcase of more than 150 student innovations from around the world. 

The most diverse edition to date features projects from more than 100 universities, including established names such as the University of Pennsylvania, Columbia University and Goldsmiths, alongside new entrants from the Philippines, Colombia and Kuwait.

That diversity is something that was extremely important to the show’s new curator, Eleanor Watson.

 “The quantity is just a reflection of our aims for diversity, which I think is tremendously important because there is a tendency in design showcases to always end up showing material from the same schools and the same regions,” she told Arab News. “And that’s painting a very particular picture of the design landscape that’s not actually reflective of all of the work that’s out there and of different people’s lived experiences and what they expect from design.”

This year’s curatorial themes will explore the spheres where innovation can create a positive impact and Watson chose to split the show into areas named The Human; The Home; The Community; The City and The Planet.

 The aim, according to the curator, is all about “showing different systems of scale and showing what scale those designs operate on, just as a way to help people make sense of the incredible variety of designs and how it impacts all of our lives in very different ways.”

Graduate projects from 43 countries — in the fields of design, science, technology and engineering — are on show at the exhibition, which runs until Nov. 16.

 “That’s part of what’s very nice about (it) — seeing work from students in parts of the world you maybe would not get the chance to visit and to be exposed to issues that you didn’t realize were out there,” Watson said of the conscious push to ensure diversity.

And it’s not just about showing off their work, students and professors descend on Dubai for the opportunity to meet with similar minds from across the globe.

“There is this sense of creating a global design network, where people can share ideas and can share problems or challenges and see how they can help each other,” Watson said.


A hairy situation: Facial hair proves a hot topic as coronavirus worries grow

According to the CDC, beards can interfere with the correct usage of masks and respirators. (File/Shutterstock)
Updated 31 March 2020

A hairy situation: Facial hair proves a hot topic as coronavirus worries grow

  • We take a look at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s advice on mustaches, mutton chops and suave soul patches

DUBAI: With conflicting news reports from media outlets around the world stating that men should — or don’t need to — shave off their prized facial hair in order to protect themselves from the novel coronavirus, we take a look at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s advice on mustaches, mutton chops and suave soul patches.

Earlier this month, the Welsh Ambulance service advised that medical personnel should “reach for the razor (as) facial hair can disrupt the effectiveness of personal protective equipment” in a tweet and the head of France's ER doctors association advised medical staff to shave off their beards for hygiene reasons. However, these measures are mainly aimed at medical staff who rely on masks and respirators, while advice for the general public has not yet touched upon facial hair as a potential danger in the spread of coronavirus.

What’s clear, however, is the fact that beards can interfere with the correct usage of masks and respirators.

Masks and respirators are being utilized all around the world in a bid to help curb the spread of the novel coronavirus. But according to a recently resurfaced 2017 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) infographic, one’s facial hair can interfere with how effective these filtering items are.

The infographic shows 36 different facial hair styles and provides names for each of them — some of which could be unknown to even the savviest barbers. It also tells you which facial hair styles would and would not work well with a “filtering facepiece respirator” like the P2/N95 respirator, that may protect you against small airborne microbes if worn properly.

While handlebars, lampshades and soul patches are deemed good to go, other facial hair styles, such as mutton chops and a full beard are advised against.

According to the infographic, facial hair can pose a risk to the effectiveness of masks because it may interfere with respirators that rely on a tight facepiece seal to achieve maximum protection.

In short, making sure there’s a good seal between the mask and the wearer’s face is a vital part of respiratory protection, however facial hair can compromise that seal.

The CDC recommends that any facial hair that can fit entirely under a close-fitting respirator should be fine. Where it looks like you might have some problems is if your facial hair is long enough or covers enough of your face that it pushes against the seal of the respirator, thereby allowing airborne particles to leak through.

However, it’s important to note that the CDC only recommends facial masks and facepiece respirators for those who work in the healthcare industry and those who are coming into contact with people who could be potentially infected with the disease, as well as individuals with confirmed or suspected cases of COVID-19.