Community Engagement

An important and unique aspect of the Sustainable Development program is the students’ community projects, where the students are asked to develop their own community-based projects by selecting a real-world problem from their own communities (work, society, university, school, etc.).

To develop the project, students must work in groups to transfer a community problem into a project, which includes problem identification, objectives to be achieved, work-packages, mile-stones, time-plan, responsibilities then implementation and assessing its impact. Below are some examples of community engagement projects taken up by students in the M.Sc. in Sustainable Development program:

Entrepreneurial Solutions to Egypt’s Traffic Problem

The main objectives of this project were to understand the traffic issues in Cairo, Egypt and analyze its impact on sustainable development’s social, economic and environmental factors. 
In addition, this project studied people’s reactions to the traffic problem by conducting surveys and focus groups and collects their feedback on using ridesharing as a solution. The project succeeded in collecting data from 79 surveys and presented the analysis to Tawseela, a carpooling service provider – and users, who are mainly people ranging from 23 to 40 years and are university graduates or professionals who own a private car. Further, the project managed to get Tawseela engaged with all the activities and deliverables. A fully-fledged marketing campaign plan has also been delivered to the management. It was possible to manage to develop and integrate the benefit calculator, as well as run it in the pilot phase.

Implementation of Greening Techniques/Strategies At a Cairo Based Restaurant

a local restaurant in Zamalek, Jambalaya, was selected as a case study. An overview of its operations was conducted with three main themes in mind; energy, water and waste. The objectives were to reduce power consumption, lower water usage, reduce the amount of solid waste produced and ensure its proper disposal, replace disposable materials used with biodegradable and recyclable alternatives, and finally increase staff awareness through a training session The project succeeded in changing the restaurant’s lighting system, lowering usage by 855 kW/year. Furthermore, hardware upgrade recommendations were provided, which required a greater financial investment to be adopted in the long term. The project was able to increase staff sustainability engagement and awareness through training. Waste management was tackled through introducing non-disposable alternatives to lower paper waste generation, and through collaboration with a startup to collect the restaurant’s organic waste for anaerobic fermentation.

Sustainable Village Development

An Assessment of Practices and Project Feasibility Studies in Elshimi, Fayyoum: The purpose of this project was to assess sustainable village development in the context of ElShimi, a rural village in Fayoum. Sona’ AlHayah, a non-profit organization founded by Dr. Amr Khaled, has been quite active in Elshimi since 2012. The project succeeded in developing a feasibility study and several income-generating ideas. All techniques were fully assessed and recommendations were provided. Sona’ AlHayah were advised to incorporate sustainability into further projects

Toward Sustainable Solid Waste Management for an Island Resort in Qatar

The project succeeded to develop a comprehensive proposal for the resort’s management, containing sustainable ways for collecting waste and its utilization. Furthermore, an awareness and educational campaign for staff was proposed to disseminate knowledge and information about the ground rules of sustainability and how to become environmentally friendly. This shall serve to share a common vision and practice among the resort community and understand the logic and benefits of the proposed sustainability program.

Women Empowerment:  HOPE- Women Empowerment in Batn El Baqara

The main objective of this project was to enhance the living conditions of young women in Batn El Baqara, an underprivileged area of Cairo, while fostering the principles of sustainable development and the methods of community-based participatory research. Batn Al-Baqara area reflects a socio-economic problem which is the high unemployment rate among women in the area. The students identified the focal points and gathered information from verifiable resources through a number of interviews with women to know the activities and qualifications they have.