Education plays a fundamental role in how we can improve our future. Training the next generation of engineers on methods that can improve the effective use of energy, water, and resources is vital to Jordan’s industries’ ability to manage future challenges related to climate change.
On 28 October, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed in Amman, Jordan, between the SwitchMed project partners, the Amman Chamber of Industries (ACI), the Royal Scientific Society (RSS) and five universities.
The agreement anticipates integrating the concept of a Resource Efficient and Cleaner Production (RECP), including the UNIDO TEST methodology, into the educational programmes of the University of Jordan, the Mutah University, the Al-Hussein Bin Talal University, the German-Jordanian University, and the Princess Sumaya University for Technology.
“These five MoUs will be a cornerstone for integrating the RECP concept into academia and pave the way towards continuous cooperation between the RSS, universities and the chambers of industries,” said HRH Princess Sumaya bint El Hassan the President of the RSS.
An essential part of the EU-funded SwitchMed/MED TEST III project in Jordan is to strengthen the cooperation with academia, vocational training centres, and financial institutions and to offer young engineers and future professionals a comprehension of the RECP concept.
The MoU foresees establishing a national standard, elective course or a course module for undergraduate and/or post-graduate students on RECP and the TEST methodology in Jordan. The agreement also includes practical training sessions and mentorship for graduation projects from RECP/TEST qualified professors. The cooperation will raise awareness on RECP among industries, students, and professionals while allowing students to apply the TEST methodology in theory and practice.
“An important element of the SwitchMed initiative is the development of a curriculum for universities to build future capacities in improving resource consumption as well as effective coordination and communication, to ensure a cohesive regional approach on these issues,” said HE Ms. Maria Hadjitheodosiou, EU Ambassador to Jordan
The UNIDO TEST methodology is a systematic way to identify the most feasible potentials to efficiently use materials, water and energy within a company production and can meet each company’s own specific needs and internal capacities. From 2014-2018, the first phase of the SwitchMed/MED TEST II project demonstrated the TEST methodology and the potential for RECP within 12 food and beverage industry companies in Jordan, identifying cost savings worth 1.6 million JOD.
Scaling up the achievements from MED TEST II to other sectors and companies is the focus of the SwitchMed / MED TEST III project (2019-2022). Fifteen additional demonstration companies from the chemical, plastic and food industry are currently undertaking RECP assessments, using the TEST methodology, which ten service providers carry out as part of their on-the-job training. All in all, 20 additional service providers have been additionally qualified on the TEST methodology along with 13 university professors and 11 professionals from financial institutions. Along the cooperation with academia, vocational training centres and financial institutions, the SwitchMed/MED TEST III project in Jordan is preparing an accreditation scheme for service providers and a national program to mobilize financial support for technical assistance in the Jordanian industry to continue scale-up RECP in Jordan.
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