Jordan is a stable partner in the troubled Middle East region where a number of large projects were realized in recent years. The German-Jordanian University (GJU) is a beacon project of regional appeal.

View of Amman, capital of Jordan ©

German-Jordanian University in Amman celebrates its 10th anniversary

Founded in 2005, the German-Jordanian University (GJU) is now one the country's leading institutions of higher education with a current enrolment of roughly 3,700 students. Modelled on the German universities of applied sciences, the GJU provides students with high-quality academic training which is highly practice-oriented and designed to meet the needs of Jordan's industry and society. The Magdeburg-Stendal University of Applied Sciences is the leading German partner. The German Federal Education Ministry supported the development of the University between 2004 and 2012 with roughly 6 million euros and approximately 1.3 million euros per year have been earmarked for the period 2013-2016. The funds are channelled via the German Academic Exchange Service. Its campus is located in Mushaqar near Madaba, some 35 kilometres to the south of the capital of Amman. Federal Education Minister Johanna Wanka visited Jordan in May 2015 to open the School of Basic Sciences and Humanities together with Prime Minister Dr. Abdullah Ensour as part of the 10th anniversary celebrations of the GJU.

Cooperation in water management

In the research sector, the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research has for years been cooperating with partners in Jordan in the field of water management. The projects aim to achieve the sustainable management of scarce water resources. In 2012, the German Ministry opened the NICE Implementation Office Amman on the premises of the Jordanian Ministry of Water and Irrigation in order to consolidate the results of the SMART collaborative project on Integrated Water Resource Management (IWRM) in the Lower Jordan Valley. The Office provides advice and scientific support for the Jordanian Water Ministry and a newly established National Implementation Committee for Effective Decentralized Wastewater Management in Jordan (NICE).

SESAME – The first synchrotron radiation facility in the Middle East

SESAME (Synchrotron Light for Experimental Science and Applications in the Middle East) is a multidisciplinary centre of excellence which will strengthen basic physics research in the Middle East. It is the region's first international synchrotron radiation source established under the auspices of UNESCO in Allaan, Jordan, in 2002. The electron storage ring BESSY I was contributed by Germany. Participants in the project include Jordan, Egypt, Israel, the Palestinian Authority and Turkey. The facility serves to conduct basic research and offers training and research opportunities for junior researchers in the region. SESAME targets a broad range of applications, for example studying the structure of large biomolecules such as proteins or ribosomes. It has great potential for the natural, materials and life sciences as well as for archaeology and cultural heritage conservation and may become a centre of excellence in the Middle East which holds great appeal for Northern Africa and the Gulf region. At the same time it may serve as an anchor for research cooperation with Europe. The facility is scheduled to start operation in 2015.