Zareen Tasneem Sharif, a student at the Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (BUET), has become the “Global Winner 2022” of the Global Undergraduate Awards in the Architecture and Design category for her undergraduate thesis titled “Waste in the City: Agglomerating Local Economy of the Matuail Landfill”. She is the first Bangladeshi to be awarded this distinction, often referred to as the “Junior Nobel Prize”.
The Global Undergraduate Awards are one of the most prestigious academic awards in the world. It accepts submissions in 25 disciplines around the world. Submissions are accepted through a completely anonymous online submission platform and are evaluated by a panel of professional academics. The UA program is divided into seven regions: Africa and the Middle East, Asia, Europe, Island of Ireland, Latin America, Oceania, United States and Canada. Under the patronage of Irish President Micheal D. Higgins, submissions are awarded in three tiers per category: Highly Commended Entrants, Regional Winners and finally Global Winners.
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While Bangladeshi students have already won ‘Highly Recommended Entrants’ and ‘Regional Winner’ awards, this year – among 2,812 submissions from 73 countries – Zareen’s work was the first in Bangladesh’s history to be crowned as one of the 25 Global Winners. His project was a brilliant vision of an active landfill as an energy-efficient industrial ecology, which integrates the culture and life of the people of Dhaka and brings back the lost agricultural traditions of Matuail.
The author is a student of Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology and can be contacted at [email protected]