Hydro - Latin America is an intensive research program within an academic framework, initiated by:
- Universidad Politècnica de Catalunya (Spain)
- Université de Nice Sophia Antipolis (France)
- Universidad Santo Tomás. Seccional Tunja (Colombia)
- Universidade Federal do Rio do Janeiro (Brazil)
- Universidad Nacional del Litoral. Facultad de Ingeniería y Ciencias Hidricas (Argentina)
- Universidad Nacional de Ingeniería (Perú)
- Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo León (Mexico)
The objective of Hydro - Latin America is to promote, in a global Latin American vision, the key concepts, methodologies, tools and good practices which are essential for a sustainable water management. Today, problems related to water have become more and more complex and the analysis requires global and holistic approaches. Hydro - Latin American collaborates closely with HydroEurope managed by the EuroAquae consortium, running the joint master of sciences on 'Hydroinformatics and Water Management' operated jointly by 7 European universities, Universite de Nice - Sophie Antipolis (France), Brandenburg University of Technologic at Cottbus (Germany), Budapest University of Technology and Economics (Hungary), Polytechnic University of Catalonia (Spain), Newcastle University upon Tyne (UK), Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne (Switzerland) and the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (Belgium).
Today, Modern Information and Communication Technology (ICT) offer vast opportunities to explore and promote a new dimension in the engineering activity: a collaborative work of team-partners residing at different locations and working at different times using the internet as a common working and communication platform. Collaboration in this environment demands for new skills and a new 'technological culture'. This is a challenge for the Latin-American dimension where in future more and more experts and engineers from different countries with different languages, different cultures and mentalities as well as different specializations and professional experiences will have to collaborate in research, teaching and practice. Training of collaborations in such new environment is one of the great challenges of this endeavor/concept which by collaboration of the five Hydro - Latin American partners will help to establish high quality university teaching courses and links between students from the partner institutions.
The eight partners of Hydro - Latin American have decided to introduce this new concept, wherever possible, into each individual university program. They complement academic teaching and collaboration on pre-defined project objectives through the internet; these activities will be concluded in a 5-day face-to-face meeting of all participating students and teachers at one place. At the face-to-face meeting, teaching of new technologies on urban drainage processes will be emphasized by related professors and works resulting from the participating students' internet interaction will be presented and discussed. During this time gained experience will be exchanged and personal contacts will be established and deepened.
The internal evaluation of Hydro-Latin America Quality Assurance aims to outline the general quality assessment of the intensive research program and to measure the degree of satisfaction of all stakeholders.
Throughout the programme, the three partner institutions share their knowledge and skills in different domains related to water management and engineering: mathematical formulation of physics and hydraulics, insight in physics of rivers, experience with field surveys, hydrological and hydraulic modelling, hydroinformatics, numerical simulations, river engineering, sediment transport, river morphological behaviour... Hydro-Latin America Quality Assurance process will determine the degree of adequacy of the formation with regard to the two main objectives:
- The practice and technical control of hydrological and hydraulic modelling tools and methods on a real-life case;
- The use of web-based collaborative engineering, in response to professional needs in relation with floods and engineering works.
The Self-Assessment Process
The evaluation of Hydro-Latin America program will be launched at the end of the face-to-face meeting. All stakeholders - Students, Teaching Staff, Lecturers, Coordinators of Asian institutions, Public Authorities - will be requested to describe their self-assessment of the program. Each participant will be invited to express his/her own judgment in a free way by filling up a form comprising eight items to be evaluated (max. 100 words for each item).
Dissemination of the Evaluation Report
According to the pre-defined items of the questionnaires, a detailed approach of each considered item will be described in reports by Advisors/External Experts. The conclusions of the evaluation process will suggest recommendations, proposals and actions to be taken for the improvement of the program with regard to organizational/logistic issues, the academic program, teaching contents/tools, the collaborative enginering experience. The Quality Assurance final report will be available on the platform, and will constitute the pre-requisites for the next session of Hydro-Latin America program.