Humanitarian engineering is an important part of the research portfolio of important research fields for the faculties of Engineering Technology (ET), Geo-information Science and Earth Observation (ITC) and Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences (BMS).

Ultimately, humanitarian engineering must be about creating positive, transformative change in students, institutions, and local and international communities. Creating real, tangible change challenges existing powers and will always be a struggle. But change is possible, and dedicated leaders are needed. 

Key domains 

Together we focus on new theories, methodologies and tools in three key domains within the framework of Humanitarian Engineering:

  • Humanitarian Aid Engineering

    Humanitarian Aid Engineering is all about immediate responses in times of need. You can think of, for example, quick solutions for water supply, communication connections, first de-mining actions, or flexible and modular facilities. At UT we focus on developing engineering innovations to serve humanity, especially in the direction of more vulnerable and underserved communities.

  • Resilience Engineering

    Resilience Engineering is about long-term planning and capacity building. You can think of, for example, maintenance planning, education facilities, robust infrastructures, but also context and cultural awareness and co-creation. At UT we focus on a synergetic and common effort to increase the well-being and the global sustainable growth by significantly decreasing disaster risk.

  • Responsible and Sustainable Entrepreneurship

    Responsible and Sustainable Entrepreneurship is about the implementation and value creation from technology in a local and volatile context. You can think of, for example, job creation and small-scale economy planning.


  • EDUbox

    EDUbox is a self-contained, off-grid and modular learning environment, part of our Humanitarian Engineering action. The EDUbox is funded through the Orange Knowledge Programme TMT+ project, sponsored by Nuffic and the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs and acquired by Dr. Alberto Peter Chemweno (DPM-ET Department), Belink Academy (Nesar Moshtaq, Arash Kargar) and Yarmouk University to provide technical vocational education and training (TVET) to underserved communities. The EDUbox is managed by EDUBox stichting (kvk: 83891560).

    The EDUbox is meant to be a flexible learning environment, with a "hands-on" lab included, able to be shipped and used in almost all the environments. The EDUbox follows the STEM classification as a base for its flexible learning setup.

  • Curricula development with the University of Mosul and Polytechnic University of Erbil (Iraq)

    The aim of the project was to align the curricula of some technical programmes to Bologna standards. The project involved courses such as CAD, Damage Assessment et cetera.

  • Enter to Transform

    This is an Interreg project about refugees entrepreneurship, in collaboration with Enschede municipality. Read more about Enter to Transform on their website.

  • Palestinian-Dutch Academic Cooperation Programme on Water (PADUCO)

    This involved 11 universities and included more than 30 small- and medium-scale applied research projects on water management and governance, wastewater treatment and reuse, groundwater management, irrigation management, rainwater harvesting and desalination. Read more about the project.

  • Orange Knowledge Programme - Tailor-made Training

    Learning & development for a Sustainable future for refugees & host communities to promote co-existence and Socio-Economic Development: The overall objective of this project is to contribute to increased quality education and vocational training for refugees and internally displaced persons and host communities in Jordan and Lebanon. Specifically, this project aims to Train the Trainers at requesting organisations to enable them to remove barriers on student pathways to and during tertiary education.

  • Orange Knowledge Programme - Project on WASH

    Nuffic OKP project on capacity and curriculum development on water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) and climate-smart agriculture at 9 Palestinian universities, 2019-2023.

  • PhD - Data governance & infrastructure in Palestina

    PhD project of Amro Wawi on the assessment of data governance and infrastructure in the Palestinian water sector (co-supervised by Gül Özerol and Michiel Heldeweg).

  • PhD - Impact of armed conflict on water management and governance

    PhD project of Julianne Schillinger on the impacts of armed conflict on water management and governance in the Middle East (co-supervised by Gül Özerol and Michiel Heldeweg).

Student movement

The University of Twente has an active branch of ENACTUS. Enactus is an organization active in 37 countries that enables students to realize their ideas into projects that could run for years. They focus their projects on SDG’s in order to create a positive social impact on the world

The aim is to develop students into responsible leaders for the future with a vision of creating a better world for everyone. Wondering how they make an impact? Visit the Enactus Twente website.

Affiliations & information for organisations

Organisations, NGOs and Knowledge Institutes interested in the research of the Humanitarian Engineering group are also very much encouraged to contact Alberto Martinetti. We are interested in the possibility of doing research at/with companies and providing professional education. Do you have quesions about specific research topics? Please find your contact person below or on the Contact page.