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Cairobserver crowdfunds for two print editions on urbanism

Online platform and sporadic publication launches crowdfunding campaign for two print issues on downtowns and university campuses

Ahram Online , Tuesday 2 Dec 2014
Cairobserver
Cairobserver second print edition and inserts (Photo: Rowan El Shimi)
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Since its inception in 2011, Cairobserver.com has become the go-to portal on the web for anyone seeking news and analysis on Cairo's architecture, urban reality and even some reflections on cultural life in the city.

A one man show to a large extent, Cairobserver is run by architect and urban researcher Mohamed El-Shahed, and features posts by other guest authors.

Currently, El-Shahed is aiming to raise $9,170 to produce two new Arabic print editions of the Cairobserver: one tackling issues of downtown areas in Cairo, Alexandria and other cities while the other will address the universities’ role in urban life from a variety of perspectives.

The first print edition was published with a grant from the British Council in 2012, and featured stories – in both English and Arabic – from the blog, along with guest contributions. The second, entirely Arabic print edition, was produced through a successful crowdfunding campaign raising around $5,000 in 2013.

The second print edition was well-received in its launch events, and focused on the groundwork on urban initiatives and culture.

"The publications attract a new audience beyond the blogosphere, they are also a way to promote the blog," El Shahed explained to Ahram Online during the second print's launch.

 "The content is sourced from people working in heritage, urban planning, construction backgrounds and students and thus connects different circles," he added.

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