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News Article

United Technologies to Lead Discussion on Sustainability in the Middle East

ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates, Nov. 4, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Convening sustainability thought leaders with green building professionals in emerging economies, United Technologies Corp. (NYSE: UTX) hosted Distinguished Sustainability Lecture Series events in Doha, Qatar, and Abu Dubai, United Arab Emirates, on Nov. 3 and 4. This is the 15th lecture series event in the Middle East since 2011.

The level of awareness regarding green buildings and sustainability has grown significantly in recent years in the Middle East. The United Arab Emirates has increased its total amount of LEED-certified space by 72 percent since last year, now ranking eighth on the U.S. Green Building Council's (USGBC) Top 10 Countries for LEED list. Qatar is also focused on sustainable practices and formally established the Qatar Green Building Council (QGBC) in 2009. Following the launch of the Qatar National Vision 2030 (QNV2030), a long-term development strategy, the QGBC supports the QNV2030 effort to promote the sustainability culture in Qatar with a focus on the country's construction industry.

In support of this focus, approximately 200 international thought leaders and green building professionals gathered at United Technologies' lecture series events to discuss the demand for green buildings and the future of food in the Middle East. As part of the lecture series event, participants also had the opportunity to attend Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED®) training.

Both events featured lectures from Dr. Joseph Allen, Assistant Professor of Exposure Assessment Science at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Director of the Healthy Buildings program at the Center for Health and the Global Environment at Harvard Chan School, and John Mandyck, UTC Chief Sustainability Officer.

"Sustainability and energy efficiency are now mainstream in the Middle East," said Mandyck. "We can accelerate green building even further by understanding its connection to the health and productivity of occupants. We're pleased to convene the forum for this discussion."

Related to green building trends, Dr. Allen provided a special lecture focused on new research from "The Impact of Green Buildings on Cognitive Function" study. This study, which was conducted by Allen and researchers from SUNY Upstate Medical University and Syracuse University and funded by United Technologies, demonstrates that improved indoor environmental quality doubled cognitive function test scores.

"Research drives practice, and our goal is to produce high-quality science that allows practitioners to make data-driven decisions. This new research is very timely for the Middle East as they continue to expand on their green building efforts," said Dr. Allen. "These findings suggest that indoor environments can have a profound impact on the decision-making performance of workers, which is a primary indicator of worker productivity."

"When it comes to the decision-making ability of green building occupants, intelligence is in the air," said Mandyck. "We know green buildings conserve natural resources, minimize environmental impacts and improve the indoor environment, but the new COGfx Study results show they can also become important human resource tools for all indoor environments where cognitive abilities are critical to productivity, learning and safety."

Launched in the Middle East in 2011, the lecture series has reached more than 3,000 attendees through 27 lectures in 13 countries. For more information on United Technologies' sustainability efforts, visit www.NaturalLeader.com and join our conversation on Twitter: @UTC, @JohnMandyck, using the hashtag #DSLS.

To learn more about The COGfxStudy, visit www.CHGEHarvard.org/COGfxStudy and www.theCOGfxStudy.com. Follow the discussion on Twitter using the hashtags #TheCOGfxStudy and #IntelligenceInTheAir.

United Technologies Corp., based in Farmington, Connecticut, provides high-technology systems and services to the building and aerospace industries worldwide. To learn more about UTC, visit the website or follow the company on Twitter: @UTC.

SOURCE United Technologies Corp.​