Makerere University, together with the University of Dar-es-Salaam, University of Nairobi and Aalto University in Finland, recently teamed up on a project on “Strengthening Problem- Based Education in East African Universities 2017-2020”, funded by the Finnish Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Problem-Based Education/ Problem- Based Learning (PBL) is a particularly powerful multidisciplinary approach to seeking and applying in-depth knowledge on particular phenomena prevailing in society. This project is intended to contribute to the development of sustainable innovation ecosystems by building the capacity of university students and faculty to respond to global challenges, using a multidisciplinary approach. It is envisaged that students participating in the project will gain hands-on experience in conceptualizing and prototyping environmentally, socially and economically sustainable solutions to community challenges. In addition, students will gain the knowledge tools of design thinking, project management skills, and join a regional and global network of PBL practitioners.


We are looking for motivated students, preferably in their Third Year of study in the various programs offered in the School of Engineering (S0E) and School of the Built Environment, Fourth year in Architecture; and Second Year in the Margaret Towell School of Industrial & Fine Art to participate in this project. Participation will be on a competitive basis. One team of students (4-6 members), with a representation from all the three schools of CEDAT, will be selected. The selected team will be paired-up with a team of students from Aalto University, to work on the identified project challenge.


Under the umbrella theme ‘Working towards a better livelihood in Peri- Urban Communities’, students can submit proposals in any of the five broad areas: Food, Water and Sanitation, Waste, Housing, and Energy Solutions for Peri-Urban Communities.


All submissions should be made online, to the following email The deadline for submission of proposals is Monday 2nd October 2017 before midnight.


Preference will be given to pragmatic solutions that can be achieved in a short-term (within six months). The proposals should not exceed 4 (four) pages, including a tentative budget and activity plan. Up to five project teams will be selected for Pitching. These will be notified one week before the Pitching date. The winning team will become the PBL-Mak Team, and will be given up to UGX 5 Million to be used for prototyping and other project activities. However, the team can source extra funding.


The successful team will be assisted to identify a mentor, and team of experts from the three schools of CEDAT. The team will work together with a complementary team of Aalto University students, from the fields of Engineering, Design and Business. The final Project will be presented at an official event, and the team members will be given a certificate of participation in an International PBL Project Challenge 2017-2018.