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Engineering And Engineering Education In Egypt

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2004 Annual Conference


Salt Lake City, Utah

Publication Date

June 20, 2004

Start Date

June 20, 2004

End Date

June 23, 2004



Conference Session

Engineering Education in Muslim Worlds: Introductory Workshop

Page Count


Page Numbers

9.537.1 - 9.537.7

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Paper Authors

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Osman El-Sayed

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 0560

Engineering and Engineering Education in Egypt

Osman Lotfy El-Sayed Faculty of Engineering, Cairo University

I Introduction

The long history of Egypt is marked by a number of engineering achievements which gave it a well deserved reputation of a nation of great builders.

Foremost among these achievements is the construction of the first stone building in the history of mankind, the stepped pyramid of Sakkara which is associated with the name of its architect Imhoteb, the eminent figure of engineering and medicine deified by the ancient Egyptians and revered by the Greeks for centuries.

Another example of engineering achievements is the construction of the Giza pyramids which required not only a mastery of many sciences and technologies such as geometry, cosmology, architecture … etc but also the management of a work force consisting of tens of thousands of workers that had to be housed fed and medically treated on the construction site.

The list of engineering achievements is large and encompasses all the civilizations that flourished in the Nile Valley. It includes the temples of Karnak and Abu Simbel, the Pharos of Alexandria and the mosque and madrassa of Sultan Hassan among others.

This history is also associated with the creation of the first forms of "universities" as centers for the generation, conservation and transmission of knowledge. Oun (3000BC) best, known as Heliopolis, was the first center of its kind and was the mecca of Greek philosophers, scientists and historians. The Bibliotheca Alexandrina and its Museum (300BC) brought together the scientists and philosophers from all parts of the Mediterranean and preserved the knowledge of all the major civilizations along its shores. The University of Al Azhar (10th century AD) was and remains the major that flourished theological center of the Moslem world.

II Origins of Modern Engineering Education in Egypt

Modern engineering education in Egypt started in the aftermath of the cultural shock provoked by the French Expedition lead by Napoleon Bonaparte which occupied Egypt from 1798 to 1801. It was a fundamental component of the policy of Mohamed Aly, the founder of Egypt's Royal Dynasty, to modernize Egypt and integrate it in the international economy. Engineers were needed to take in charge the large infrastructure projects (specially in the field of irrigation) and the new industries required by the new modern state. "Proceedings of the 2004 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2004, American Society for Engineering"

El-Sayed, O. (2004, June), Engineering And Engineering Education In Egypt Paper presented at 2004 Annual Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah.

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