Balsam Madi graduated from the American University of Beirut in 2011 with a Bachelor of Architecture and minors in Engineering Management and Studio Arts. She later extended her research to the urban and regional scale through her double MSc between the University of Stuttgart and Ain Shams University in Cairo in Integrated Urbanism and Sustainable Design. Her thesis focused on the processes behind Lebanon's regional planning, taking two Unions of Municipalities as a comparative approach. Building on her experiences in upgrading informal settlements in Cairo as well as her study of complex development processes in Lebanon she joined Saida’s Observatory for Social Impact where she was managing two public space upgrading projects in Saida’s historic district. She also played a role in the NGO’s strategic planning in involving academic stakeholders such as the American University of Beirut and Columbia University in the public space design. Her role as a part time lecturer at the American University of Beirut’s Design Impact Laboratory as well as Phoenicia University exemplify her vision in the importance of the feedback loop between academia and practice. At the moment, Balsam’s practice in Beirut is exploring projects in sustainable product design, including lighting and architectural finishes.