Developing maker‐movement‐inspired training courses on renewable energy sources in the Gaza Strip ‐ Palestine | MakingFutureEnergy4Palestine

Automatically moving photovoltaic element © Christoph Pfeifer

Project Coordinator: Christoph Pfeifer

Coordinating Institution: University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna

Partner Institution: Islamic University of Gaza (Hala El‐Khozondar)

Partner Country: Palestinian Territories

Project duration: 1st of February 2017 - 30th of June 2020


The overall objective of this project is a transfer of knowledge, technologies and socio‐economic competence urgently needed in Gaza. The intended partnership will set up training courses at IUG, based on maker‐type organised practical courses where students create own projects in renewable energy technologies. The partnership will provide the possibility for researchers from Gaza to gather personal experience in Austria as well as vice versa and develop strategies to promote studying renewable energy engineering in Gaza. The specific experiences at BOKU with organisation of practical courses in renewable energy engineering based on maker movement (e.g. 3D printing), is expected to be a valuable asset for this cooperation. Maker-based education is a novel way to build self-designed laboratory tools on reasonable costs to perform tests with new methods and technologies. A speciality of the cooperation will be a collaboration between experts from technical and socio-economic disciplines as well as from teaching experts in order to get to a comprehensive view on structural development issues.

The partners from IUG are well aware of the actual, local situation. The labour force participation rate in the Gaza Strip is 45.5%. The gap in the participation rate between males and females in Palestine considered very big; it reached 71.7% for males compared with 18.8% for females. At the university, in the Faculty of Engineering, practical skills has limited interest due to the limited resources and laboratories. Renewable energy, especially solar, is needed to reach the national strategy goal to build up additional electrical power of 120MW. This leads to the key objectives of the partnership:

  • Analysis of the technical and economic boundary of renewable energy sources.
  • Building research and teaching capacities on renewable energy at IUG to be transferred to students, companies and communities.
  • Promotion of female student to start a technical study as well as support during the study.
  • Development of a laboratory at IUG for renewable energy research and teaching.
  • Setting up and improving training courses and research facilities at BOKU and IUG.
  • Building up a basis to create green jobs.
  • Building a network between the partner institutions as well as related institutions.

This project will contribute to achieve the goals of the national strategies to use renewable energy sources as an alternative to the traditional sources to solve the energy crisis in Palestine and in particular in the Gaza Strip and to save the environment. Moreover, a significant contribution to the economy by green jobs can be expected based on experience in middle Europe. To achieve the aim of the project, a powerful and multidisciplinary team of researchers from Gaza and Austria has been established.