Development education and engineering: a framework for incorporating reality of developing countries into engineering studies

Author (s): A. Pérez-Foguet, S. Oliete-Josa, A. Saz-Carranza
Journal: International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education

Volume: Vol. 6, Issue 3
Pages: 278 – 303
Date: 2005

Purpose – To show the key points of a development education program for engineering studies fitted within the framework of the human development paradigm.
Design/methodology/approach. The bases of the concept of technology for human development are presented, and the relationship with development education analysed. Special attention is dedicated to the role of case studies in engineering courses. After that, the development education program pushed by the Civil Engineering School of Barcelona and Engineering without Borders is explained, focusing on two major contributions: two optional courses about international aid and development and nine classroom case studies about different technologies used in real co-operation projects.
Findings. This work provides a conceptual basis for incorporating development education into engineering studies, a general overview of different activities promoted in Spanish technical universities and practical information about optional courses and classroom case studies.
Research limitations/implications. The proposal is based on the experience in Spanish engineering curricula (mostly in five-year degrees). Some of the topics covered by the courses and the case studies can be better adapted at postgraduate level in three- or four-year degrees.
Practical implications. It is shown that development education can be incorporated into engineering studies through different specific non-expensive activities.
Originality/value. This work presents and puts in context the development education activities pushed coordinately between a non-governmental organization and an engineering school. Thus, it can be of major interest for both teachers and workers of the international development field.



author = {Pérez‐Foguet, A.; Oliete‐Josa, S. and Saz‐Carranza, A-},
title = {Development education and engineering: A framework for incorporating reality of developing countries into engineering studies},
journal = {International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education},
volume = {6},
number = {3},
pages = {278-303},
year = {2005},
doi = {10.1108/14676370510607241},
URL = {},
eprint = {}