Masdar City Harvard Case Solution & Analysis


Masdar City is a project of a Carbon neutral city, which is designed to provide a healthy and a carbon neutral place/community to live.  The engineers of this project are very competent and they have built an entire new city from the scratch, which is based on the latest technology and renewable energy resources. Although, the city is under construction and it will take about 15 years in completion. (Zerkel, March 26, 2014). The project is backed by wealthy and determined government, where they will use advanced technologies for traveling purposes and to meet other needs of  residents. The planners of this project are very confident about the sustainability of the Masdar City however, it is hard to predict that whether Masdar City will be energy sufficient or not. Apart from just a project planner, the company which is constructing and dealing with the project is now acting as consultants to those businesses who want to use renewable energy resources. The sustainability of the  city is suspicious because it is not a unique project and there are a number of energy efficient projects around the globe. Moreover, the city is criticized by experts that instead of building a new city from scratch, they should try to integrate energy efficient moves and technologies in existing sites to make them environment-friendly and ideal places for living. The focal point of the Masdar Company (a Subsidiary of Mubadala Development Company) about the Masdar city is its safety from Carbon emission, which is also a weak point because this single factor cannot effectively determine the success of such a huge project. Masdar City is a model city and many people want to set up their businesses in this city to improve their business operations using renewable energy sources. The company is also serving these companies as a consultant who is willing to set their business in this economic zone.

Limitation of the Project/Company:

  • As Masdar City is an initiative of Masdar Company and it is quite a unique project of its nature in the Abu Dhabi therefore, it seems that the project will cost very high and after completion it will be available only for wealthy people to live in. This can be a weakness of this project because the project will only cater wealthy people and will provide a standard living only for a particular class.
  • The company as a consulting firm is trying to focus on new  buildings, green prints of sites around the world and especially to  hotels and company headquarters and other buildings. Therefore, the company is required to have a diverse group of expertise, but in reality it has expertise in a limited field.
  • Masdar Company has specialized in green technology in climates similar to Abu Dhabi (Middle East, some parts of Africa etc.). To cover a wide area of the green technology market Masdar Company is required to improve its expertise in some other climates to capture a wide region across the globe.
  • Masdar Company is now looking at the solutions for the energy and water savings for UAE embassies across the world however, as they are experts in climates similar to Abu Dhabi, so they cannot effectively fulfill their current project and will face some serious issues in the future.
  • In their project with the government, they faced the problem that the owner did not want to invest (even if there is a solid business case) because the tenant/user received the benefit/saving of this investment.
  • The project will take a long period of time and one cannot predict the economic, environmental and natural changes that could take place across the world. This is also raising questions on the success and sustainability of the project.

This situation created lots of difficulties for the Masdar Company and for the owner and supporters of this project because this has negatively communicated policies and work processes of the company and project to its stakeholders. The project is under construction and it will take about 15 years in completion, which means the company and its supporters should revise their strategies to meet the rapidly changing trends and to avoid any sort of failure. It is also important to set a group of factors and outcomes to determine the success of the company and its initiative Masdar City because this is not the first project that is planned as a zero carbon, zero waste and car free city. When it comes to self-sufficiency in energy the great London can be a good example, which is 87% more self-sufficient without building such sites. The approach and plan of the Masdar is that it is trying to accelerate the deployment of renewable and environmentally-friendly energy resources in the UAE, which is a pretty positive initiative, but there are a number of people who have lots of questions in their minds about the sustainability of this city and other green energy projects. The key questions that are in the minds of many people are whether the city will get success as a carbon neutral city? Will the city have no waste in the future? Its streets will be free from pollution? Will the  population of the city will demand for minimal water? Will the city changes the behavior and human nature? (Hume, April 8, 2013).  These are just a few excerpts because the number of questions that people have in their minds are hard to list here.......................................

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