Research | Research and Graduate Studies | Erasmus+ Projects | UPGRADE | NDU


Urban and transPortation reGeneration for Reducing Automobile Dependency in mEna area

Project Manager:

Dr. Talal Salem

Scientific Steering Committee Member:

Dr. Dima Jawad


Dr. Claudette Hajj

Funded by:

Erasmus+ - European Commission



November 2020 – November 2023

Project Partners:

1. Technische Universität Berlin, Germany (Coordinator)
2. University of L'Aquila, Italy
3. National Technical University of Athens, Greece
4. Universitat Politècnica de València, Spain
5. Arab Academy for Science and Technology and Maritime Transport, Egypt
6. Future University in Egypt, Egypt
7. Notre Dame University-Louaize (NDU), Lebanon
8. University of Balamand, Lebanon
9. Housing and Building National Reseach Center, Egypt

Project Description:

UPGRADE targets the third category (i.e. developing the higher education sector within society at large) of the Erasmus+ Programme supporting the “knowledge triangle innovation” subcategory. The project also hits the second cross-cutting priority of the Erasmus+ Programme. The wider objective of the project is to “employ multidisciplinary higher education and research to help transportation businesses address the accessibility and mobility challenges of unprivileged sectors of the society using innovative solutions (focusing on refugees from conflict-affected counties as a case study)”. Simply put in this project we will apply evidence-based research to study the travel behaviour and choice preferences of refugees and the associated impacts on land use (and vice versa) in the MENA region and EU countries. The outcome of this investigation will be a comprehensive urban and transportation planning business model ready for adoption by local transportation businesses to fulfill the travel demand of refugees as an example of unprivileged sectors of our societies. To conduct this research various multidisciplinary courses under the umbrella of Sustainable Urban Mobility Planning will be taught at our institutions which requires curriculum reforms and lab developments. The project also requires the involvement of NGOs local businesses and the society at large.

In general, UPGRADE’s wider objective is to employ multidisciplinary education and research to help transportation businesses address the challenges of unprivileged sectors of society using innovative solutions. UPGRADE focuses on unprivileged minorities that evolved lately in both the EU and the MENA region (i.e. the refugees from conflict-affected counties in their new host countries as an example for eliminated, disadvantaged groups from the society) as a case study to solve not only their transportation and Urban mobility planning everyday problems, but also to try to upgrade their economic status, through studying the land use of the accommodated settlements to help them look for income-generating opportunities and a more interesting lifestyle.



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