Rendering of DEWA buildingRendering of DEWA building (Credit: DEWA)

Dubai Electricity and Water Authority partnership advances ‘future energy’ educational program

May 4, 2019

The University of California, Berkeley and the Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) are teaming up to establish a new educational program to accelerate the digitalization of infrastructure systems for sustainable energy. The partnership, finalized today, will help train technical DEWA professionals in state-of-the-art technologies relevant to modern infrastructure systems, particularly for electricity and water.

Faculty from UC Berkeley’s College of Engineering have created new courses for a specialized curriculum covering topics that include modeling and simulation, machine-learning algorithms, optimization, controls and statistics. This curriculum will serve as the core of DEWA’s planned Master of Future Energy Systems and Technology degree program. The educational partnership will advance Dubai’s Clean Energy Strategy, which aims to produce 75% of the emirate’s total power output from clean energy sources by 2050. DEWA generates 11,100 megawatts of electricity and delivers 470 million gallons of water for Dubai.

“DEWA aims to become a leading innovative, sustainable global corporation, and is committed to keeping pace with the Fourth Industrial Revolution,” said Tsu-Jae King Liu, dean of UC Berkeley’s College of Engineering. “We are excited to partner with them to accelerate progress in clean energy and energy efficiency.”

The UC Berkeley-DEWA educational partnership will officially start on June 1, 2019, and continue for five years. The educational program will generate approximately $40 million in total revenue for UC Berkeley over that period.

The program is part of the recently launched Campus for Occupational and Academic Development at DEWA. Students in the program will be DEWA employees interested in advancing their professional careers.

Tarek Zohdi, UC Berkeley professor of mechanical engineering is the academic director of the UCB-DEWA partnership and the faculty lead for the UC Berkeley team. Others on the team include Wayne Delker, executive director of the Fung Institute for Engineering Leadership; Diana Wu, dean of UC Berkeley Extension; and faculty members from UC Berkeley’s College of Engineering.

“The modeling, simulation and control of complex infrastructural systems is absolutely critical to a well-functioning modern society,” said Zohdi, who is also the chief technology officer of the Fung Institute. “Our goal will be to provide participants with the tools they need for successful industrial careers in future next-generation energy and water sectors.”