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Call for Applications

© Felix Noak

International Alumni Seminar: "Good Urban Governance in the MENA Region: Knowledge Transfer between Global North and South"

at TU Berlin, date to be announced


TU Berlin's satellite Campus El Gouna acts as a scientific and academic field office on the Red Sea in Egypt. It is a unique public-private partnership (PPP) project in the field of education export and was generously financed by TU Berlin alumnus Samih Sawiris. Campus El Gouna, which opened its doors in October 2012, offers three Master's programs (Urban Development, Energy Engineering & Water Engineering) which deal with current and pressing development issues in the MENA region, among them:

  • High rate of population growth
  • Urban Agglomeration in the form of migration from rural area to urban area
  • Increasing scarcity of resources (e.g. water)
  • Increasing energy consumption
  • Global climate change and its impacts in MENA region
  • Low gross national product and growing share of the population below the poverty line

About the Alumni Seminar

Urban Governance particularly "Good Urban Governance" is the fundamental condition for successful development in the urban area. It is essential that the different actors (public, private and civil society) of urban governance actively communicate with each other and involve them in the decision-making process. According to UN Habitat (2012), good urban governance is characterized by sustainability, subsidiarity, equity, efficiency, transparency and accountability, civic engagement and citizenship, and security. These norms are interdependent and mutually reinforcing. The World Bank and the other international development organizations have their own principles and mandates to work with the term "Good Urban Governance".

In the MENA region, public governance is weak, as measured by an indicator for the quality of public administration and public accountability - weaker than in similar, competitor countries in other regions, and even weaker than in all other developing countries.  These weak governance institutions and processes could arguably be associated with disappointing economic performance.  During the 1980s and 1990s, the MENA region had disappointing rates of GDP growth, and a World Bank Group's analysis found that its annual growth rate could have been as much as one percentage point higher had the quality of administration matched that of well performing economies.


The Alumni Seminar aims at achieving the following outcomes:

  • Providing important insights into different Good Governance issues especially in the fields of spatial planning, resource management, housing, economic empowerment, area development etc.
  • Presenting knowledge and best practices related to Good Urban Governance for learning and replication processes
  • Exchanging development experiences from different contexts
  • Offering a long-term network in the sense of south-north or south-south dialogue
  • Creating a platform for cooperation initiatives in the regional context

Prospective participants

The Alumni Seminar aims at bringing together a total of 35 alumni of TU Berlin and FU Berlin residing in the MENA Region and other DAC countries.

Preliminary Program

Day 1

  • Welcome (Prof. Dr. Angela Ittel, Prof. Dr. Matthias Barjenbruch, Prof. Dr. Rudolf Schäfer, Christina Stahlbock)
  • Introduction of the program and the participants
  • TU Berlin Alumni and Alumni Club El Gouna e.V.
  • Welcome Lunch
  • Keynote Speech
  • Campus Tour – “TU Berlin: Past, Present and Future”

Day 2

  • From Government to Governance: Theory to Practice (Prof. Uwe Jens Walther)
  • Good Governance: Challenges for Developing Countries (Prof. Dr. Enrico Gualini)
  • Good Governance: A Pilar of Sustainability and A Mandate for Local Administration (Papon Dev)
  • Good Governance: Experience from Egypt

Day 3

  • The Social Capital Concept: Basis for Participatory Governance Structure
  • Good Governance Perspectives in Global South (Prof. Dr. Philipp Misselwitz)
  • Privately Managed Community: An Approach to Good Governance (Felix Hartenstein)
  • Networking and Cooperation Workshop

    Day 4

      • Urban Governance for Common Pool Resources
      • Good Governance Principles in Berlin (Berlin Senate)
      • Excursion: Mega City Berlin: Development and Policy (Berlin Senate)

      Day 5

      • Good Governance: Experience from MENA Countries
      • Neighbourhood Management in Berlin: Innovative Governance (Lukas Born)
      • Excursion Berlin Mitte District: Planning and Governance

        Day 6

        • Excursion to Amt Wiesenburg
        • Excursion to Potsdam: Potsdam City Development and Policy

          Day 7

          • Good Governance: Experiences from the Global South
          • Cultural Event and Farewell Dinner

            Day 8

            • Wrap Up and Evaluation
            • Outlook: next Seminar 


            The Alumni Seminar will be held in English.


            The deadline for applications was 29 February 2020.

            Terms of Participation & Funding

            Eligibility Criteria:

            Alumni with an academic and/or professional background in the fields of urban planning, civil engineering, architecture, energy engineering, water engineering, urban development, political science, social science, economy and with experience and/or interest in new town development

            Participation and funding:

            The participants must engage actively during the entire Alumni Seminar. If selected, the participants are expected to contribute to the seminar with a paper or a presentation from their regional or country context.
            Travelling expenses will be reimbursed upon presentation of the respective valid document(s). Refunds for flight costs will be calculated depending on the participant’s country/region of residence.  Additional costs for accommodation and public transportation during the seminar will be covered. Conditions apply for local participants. Selected candidates will receive detailed information about the funding process.

            Management Team

            Prof. Dr. Matthias Barjenbruch, Institute of Civil Engineering, Department of Water Engineering and Director of the Zentralinstitut El Gouna

            Prof. Dr. Rudolf Schäfer, Study Dean- Department of Urban Development, Zentralinstitut El Gouna

            Papon Dev, M.Sc., Research Associate, Department of Urban Development, Zentralinstitut El Gouna

            Ira Lemm, M.Sc., Research Associate, Department of Urban Development, Zentralinstitut El Gouna


            TU Berlin’s El Gouna Office

            Papon Kumar Dev

            Tel: +49 (0)30 314-75721

            E-Mail: dev(at)tu-berlin.de


              Funded by:

              Zusatzinformationen / Extras

              Become a Member

              Alumni Program
              Office of Communication, Events & Alumni
              Phone: +49 (0)30 314-24028