Railway engineering education in Addis Ababa Institute of Technology (AAiT) which was started in 2012 in collaboration with Ethiopian Railways Corporation (ERC) is unique in the country’s higher education system. The education constituted three majors at Masters (MSc) levels, namely, railway civil engineering, electrical engineering for railway systems, and rolling stock engineering. As a partial fulfillment of the masters program, the students have been conducting an independent research under the guidance and supervision of AAiT researchers. So far, AAiT has more than 200 graduates which by implication, there are more than 200 researches conducted under different topics on the railway sector since the commencement of the program which have results that will benefit the sector if properly implemented. Among others, the research outcomes so far, have addressed the railway industry in many aspects including infrastructure, rolling stock, communication and signal, operation and management etc. In fact, some of the research outcomes demonstrated the potential of our graduates to easily transfer the railway technology and develop Ethiopian railway technology in the near future.

As the railway industry is flourishing in the country, and as the railway system is a complex system, undertaking basic and applied research, will have significance to the sector’s sustainability. Although, the Ethiopian Railways Corporation, the owner and operator of the railway system in the country, carries huge burden in developing new railway corridors, forecasting demands, operation, inspection, maintenance and other ancillary works of the railway system, its collaboration with AAiT to setup the foundation for railway education and research is a big milestone and probably one of the most successful capacity building program in such short duration and under constrained railway resources.

The railway engineering center has recognized the need for disseminating and popularizing the fruits of AAiT’s partnership with ERC in terms of research on the first railway conference. This will be the first of its kind and it will take the railway system research one step forward.

The aims of the conference are to:

  • Disseminate the railway research outputs to the railway industry, policy makers, financers, partner companies, manufacturers, partner universities etc.
  • Prepare a platform to students/graduates and academia where they can discuss and share ideas about the future railway technology.
  • Demonstrate the outputs of a good university industry partnership to be taken as an example by other universities and sectors in the country

In the process best research will be selected for presentation, awarded for publication on Zede Journal of Engineers and Architects, a reputable engineering journal in Addis Ababa University. The Center and Ethiopian Railways Corporation, in partnership, will also facilitate conditions for those best researches to have practical implication for the sector.

So far, AAiT has received sufficient papers and they are under review. The Conference will be held at the end of May, 2016.

Source: Addis Ababa Institute of Technology
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