GUtech Geosciences students conducted Geological study-excursion to Germany

BARKA The Department of Applied Geosciences (AGEO) at GUtech, recently conducted a two weeks international excursion to Germany with a group of 18 students and their professor and an assistant. The study-trip was part of the curricula, with its main goal to learn more about the geology of Germany and the regional development of a region. “The students had to familiarize themselves with different aspects of applied geology such as the development of natural resources or the usage of ground- and sub-surface water as well as natural stones in the lower Rhine district. With a focus on the presentation of thermal springs, coal and base metal deposits as well as volcanic rocks, we gave the students an overview of topics that cannot be presented here in Oman,” said Prof. Dr. Wilfried Bauer, who organized and headed the excursion along with his assistant.

In the second part of the excursion the students learnt more about the socio-economic development of a region, that developed from a coal mining region to a more diversified economy today. Throughout the excursion the group also visited the geological garden and the mining museum in Bochum. “During our visit to the mining museum the students got an impression about the coal-based economic rise of the Ruhr region,” said Prof. Dr. Wilfried Bauer, who is specialized in mining sector. “Although coal mining will be closed in two years, the production of metals will continue with cheaper imported energy resources since the skills and know how is still there.”

The students visited different cities like Cologne, Bochum, Xanten, Krefeld and Aachen. At GUtech’s partner-university, RWTH Aachen University, they had the opportunity to attend a lecture in the MSc programme in Applied Geosciences. A number of AGEO alumnis are currently studying in the MSc programme at RWTH Aachen University.

Engineering student will participate in Workshop at TU Delft

An Engineering student of the Department of Mechanical Engineering at GUtech has been selected for a scholarship to participate within a group of 30 students in an interdisciplinary international workshop “Engineering for Development (E4D) – Science & Technology for the South” at Delft University of Technology, known as TU Delft. The University is part of the prestigious European IDEA League of universities, that includes as well ETH Zürich (Switzerland) and RWTH Aachen University (Germany). The Summer School is sponsored by the Sawiris Foundation for Social Development.

The topic of the Summer School revolves around the depleting resource sand and the question of how to develop alternative building materials for future cities in emerging countries. “Sand is a component of any product we use in our lives such as glass, concrete, computers, detergents and even toothpaste. During the workshop we will learn how to use sand for the future of our cities,” said Balaj Fazal, 4th year Engineering student at the Department of Mechanical Engineering at GUtech. He will be one of the few Bachelor students attending the workshop that is mainly designed for Master’s and PhD students. Balaj who has been participating with the Shell EcoMarathon team in 2015 in Manila, attended a summer workshop by Veolia last year in its headquarters in Paris. “Given all those possibilities for studying abroad, I am grateful to GUtech. Without the support of the university and especially my professors in Engineering and Mathematics it would have been impossible,” said Balaj, who is a holder of a scholarship of the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD). He just completed his Bachelor thesis on ‘Modelling and control of the HIV virus”, a topic closely linked to biomedical engineering. After completion of the Summer School, Balaj hopes to apply for a Master’s programme in ‘Management and Technology’ at TU Delft.

The E4D Summer School was created in 2014 for students from various scientific fields such as engineering, architecture and natural sciences. The two weeks workshop aims at developing an integrated vision to a global challenge of today’s construction industry through three workshops such as bio-cementation, crystallization and 3D printing, where the acquired knowledge will be tested and applied. According to the organizers, sustainability in the construction industry has been perceived as the optimisation of existing material and energy production. However, the fundamental energetic and material character of these base resources has not been questioned so far. Due to population growth and increased construction activities around the world, the speed of consumption of construction materials has been increasing constantly.

“Sand can be used as an alternative to concrete. But not all sand is suitable for construction,” said Balaj while explaining that only sand with a rough shape and size, that is found in river beds, lakes and oceans can be used as a building material. During the workshop Balaj and the other students will conduct field excursions to neighbouring countries and have a variety of seminars on the geology of sand, building with sand, alternative materials, planning for the future and building with seawater.

Professors and experts from around the world will share their knowledge and give insights in their field of research, including Aurel von Richthofen of ETH Zurich, who was Assistant Professor at the Department of Urban Planning and Architectural Design at GUtech. He will conduct a discussion entitled “Sand: an (in)finite resource?”. Through those discussions, the students will not only acquire theoretical knowledge about this resource sand but experiment with current and future technologies to sand and its alternatives.

Farewell for GUtech Deputy-Rector for Academic Affairs

HALBAN The German University of Technology in Oman (GUtech) held a farewell celebration for the Deputy-Rector for Academic Affairs, Dr. Jürgen Werner, on its campus in Halban last week. Dr. Jürgen Werner is leaving the university at the end of this academic year. “We would like to thank Dr. Jürgen for his work at GUtech. He has been essential in establishing the academic programmes at the new premises in Halban. Moreover, he was leading the application for GUtech’s international accreditation of all BSc and BEng programmes conducted by ACQUIN in 2015,” said Prof. Dr. Michael Modigell, Rector of GUtech. As a farewell gift and as an expression of gratitude for his work at GUtech, the Rector presented to Dr. Jürgen a drawing of an ancient dhow, by a GUtech student.


Dr. Jürgen joined GUtech in 2012, prior to the university’s relocation from the airport and beach campus in Muscat to the Halban campus in Barka. The number of students has doubled since 2012; today more than 1,200 students are studying at the university. Prior to his work at GUtech, Dr. Jürgen held leading academic positions in Ethiopia and at the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) in Bonn/Germany.


GUtech was established in Muscat in 2006. The university is affiliated with RWTH Aachen University, one of the leading Universities of Technology in Europe. RWTH Aachen University is ranked as one of the best universities in Germany.

GUtech currently offers the GUBridge, a one to two years Foundation Year Programme as well as full-time Bachelor of Science programmes in Applied Geosciences, Computer Science, Urban Planning and Architectural Design, International Business and Service Management, Logistics as well as Bachelor of Engineering programmes in Mechanical Engineering, Process Engineering and Environmental Engineering. The language of tuition at GUtech is English. Further BSc, MSc and PhD programmes are planned in the coming years.

GUtech Student Awards recognize Outstanding Students

BARKA The GUtech Student Awards were distributed by the Rectorate of GUtech to a large number of students during a ceremony held at the GUtech amphitheatre on Thursday evening. Awards were distributed in various categories to Student Council Members, active Club Members such as a Theater Club (pictured), winners of international and local competitions, the best Student Volunteers and to participants of a First Aid Workshop held at GUtech recently.

The sports awards were distributed for the fourth time to acknowledge the student’s team spirit, their high involvement and successful participation at national and international tournaments. A total of 22 students were awarded by the GUtech sports office. “GUtech students were participating in University Championships in Chess, Table Tennis, Taekwondo, Futsal, Beach Soccer and private organized competitions such as Basketball and Badminton,” said Gunhild Pfaff, Manager of the Sports Office at GUtech. The following sports achievements were awarded: The Futsal female team won the Gold Medal at the 1st Futsal Championships for Higher Educational Institutes in October 2015. The Basketball female team won Silver Medal at the PDO organized Basketball tournament in December 2015. The Taekwondo female team won the Gold Medal at the Taekwondo Championships for Higher Educational Institutes in February 2016. The GUtech teams won one Gold, one Silver and two Bronze Medals during the Taekwondo Championships for Higher Educational Institutes in Oman held in this year. A gold medal was achieved during the Open Female Badminton Championships at Sultan Qaboos University in April 2016. Four female students were selected for the Oman University National team to compete at the first Arab University Futsal Championships in Amman in November 2015. “This Academic Year we extended our cooperation with local Sports Association,” said Gunhild Pfaff.

Workshop: Tourism & Green Economy – June 14th at GUtech

Please refer to the project website for more details.

The Department of Logistics, Tourism and Service Management, with the support of The Research Council and the Ministry of Tourism organizes tomorrow June 14, 2016 at 5 PM at GUtech Campus  a workshop on Tourism and the Green Economy: “an integrated approach to sustainable tourism development in Oman” to present the preliminary outcomes of the scoping study carried out by a team of researchers from GUtech headed by Prof. Dr. Heba Aziz acting dean of the faculty of Business and Economics and head of department.  This scoping study aims to identify the regulatory framework, the policies and incentives that aim to support the implementation of the sustainable tourism development in Oman in an integrated approach.  The researchers reviewed policies, laws, regulations, incentives and challenges that govern the implementation of sustainable principles in over 17 governmental and semi-governmental organisations via comprehensive stakeholders and opinion leaders’ consultations, including but not limited to Ministry of Tourism, Ministry of the Environment and Climate Affairs, Ministry of Municipality and Water Resources, the Supreme Council for Planning, Ministry of Manpower and other authorities of relevance to the issue of sustainability in the tourism sector for example the Public Authority for Electricity and Water, Public Authority for Handicrafts Industries,  Reyada, Rafd Fund, Oman Development Bank, Information Technology Authority, Capital Market Authority, Oman Centre for Governance and Sustainability, Haya Waters and Be’eah.   The project focused on specific indicators that are relevant to three pillars of sustainability: water and energy consumption, waste management, employment of the local community and encouraging entrepreneurial initiatives. The goal of the project is to conduct a critical assessment of the existing environment enabling the implementation of sustainability in the tourism sector. The Importance of the tourism sector is its ability to deliver on many of the Global development Goals MDGs and the role of the National Committee of the Global MDG housed by the Supreme Council of Planning. The paradigm of integration is crucial for the study of sustainable tourism. In this study this paradigm will concern integration across the three pillars of sustainability namely, environment, economy and socio-cultural domain.  Integration will be approached from a destination perspective looking at how all components addressed above can be managed in a way that creates a sustainable destination where all environmental resources are managed carefully, where the community is involved and benefiting economically and where the culture is communicated responsibly to the tourists.

This project comes within the wider framework of adapting towards sustainable development and other projects like sustainable waste management, sustainable mountain management, and human resource management. The project also complements the TRC Eco-house project which can be a model for future sustainable tourism development projects.   The research project comes timely to provide an implementation framework for the Oman National Tourism Strategy 2040 where sustainability is one of its main axes. 

The research team:

Prof. Dr Heba Aziz: Research Project Leader, Professor of Sustainable Tourism, Head Department of Logistics, Tourism and Services Management, German University of Technology Oman.

Dr. Corien Hoek, deputy project leader

Ms Amjaad Al Hinai, MSc, Researcher:

Ms Magdalena Mustapic, MSc, Assistant Researcher:

45 Omani students awarded with training certificates

HALBAN Under the auspices of Her Excellency Dr. Muna Bint Salim Al Jardani, Undersecretary of the Ministry of Manpower, 45 Omani students from Duqm were awarded with training certificates on Thursday afternoon at the campus of the German University of Technology in Oman (GUtech). The majority of the trainee graduates were females. DTI is the first of its kind professional skills training programme conducted in Duqm in the past six months. Prof. Dr. Michael Modigell, Rector of GUtech, stressed that GUtech supports vocational training: “We do not only educate Engineers, Architects, Computer Scientists, Geoscientists and Business leaders, GUtech educates responsible citizens who are skilled for their professional lives,” said the Rector of GUtech in his speech. Due to the success of the programme, GUtech hopes to continue next year. The Duqm Training Initiative (DTI) was initiated and funded by the Special Economic Zone Authority Duqm (SEZAD), Duqm Refinery and Duqm Terminal with the support of Takatuf Oman.

“Our aim was to increase the chances of employability of young Omanis from Duqm. It was a six month programme which focused on English, IT and Work Ethics but also covered topics like Social Responsibility, Sports as well as Health and Safety,” said Dr. Tobias Effey, Project Manager of DTI. “Special thanks go to the GUtech team who worked long hours in Duqm and who made this programme so successful as well as our colleagues from the administration and from the GUtech Foundation Year “GUbridge” who supported the programme. That was a real team work,” said Dr. Tobias.  The university is currently negotiating with potential shareholders. “We would like to continue with another batch of students in September” said Dr. Tobias.

Badminton Instructor Course held at GUtech

A one day Badminton instructor course was held at the GUtech sports hall recently. “We had a total of 14 participants from different educational institutions in Oman. Badminton is one of the most popular indoor and outdoor games in Oman. The course was conducted by our Badminton coach Roland Brunner, who is a certified Badminton trainer from Italy and a shuttle time tutor, who is currently working for six months in our Sports Office” said Gunhild Pfaff, Manager of the GUtech Sports office. The game is a racquet game that is usually played single or double.

“The course aimed to present a badminton teaching concept which focuses on simple games building up badminton skills. Fun and independent and experimental learning is the key method. The participants were given teaching moduls for smaller and larger groups. At high levels of play, the badminton demands very good fitness, aerobic stamina, agility, strength, speed as well as precision,” said Roland Brunner who has been teaching Badminton for many years in Austria, Germany and Italy. Physical education teachers and sports instructors from different Institutes such as the Ministry of Education, Sultan Qaboos University, Majan College, American British Academy (ABA), Indian School Al Gubra, Indian School Al Wadi Al Kabir, Pakistan School Muscat and four staff and student members badminton from GUtech participated. All participants received certificates at the end of the one day course.

For the next academic year 2016/17, GUtech is planning to host badminton competitions for universities and colleges. For further details please contact