Humanitarian Engineering: A Route to Systemic Entrepreneurship Application across Africa

Simon Hill, Elizabeth Miles

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Humanitarian engineering across the UK has been a steadily growing area of pedagogical practice to enhance the knowledge of engineering students by applying their skills in global scenarios. These scenarios are different from the average activity due to their focus on not only the solution to the problem, but also the people, culture, religion and other factors that can make a huge impact upon the longevity and sustainability of the installed solution. This paper looks to gain understanding of the underlying definition of what being entrepreneurial actually is, whilst reviewing the multiple debates surrounding entrepreneurship and humanitarian engineering. Once an understanding of the background literature is complete, measurement of the characteristics of these humanitarian engineering students were conducted and compared against other engineers and students studying enterprise and entrepreneurship. In order to improve accuracy a pilot study was built into the measurement tool in order to improve validity. A secondary facet of this work looks to understand the experiences of engineers who have been involved in field work in Africa and have actively observed and contributed towards the impact of the engineering projects on systemic entrepreneurship. By further developing the use of humanitarian engineering across higher education institutions, systemic entrepreneurship can be improved both in the UK and in the international projects that they are involved in. One of the key outcomes being the need to educate engineers in systemic entrepreneurship and the fact that it does not just apply within business, rather it is a mindset that can influence both their career and the individuals whom they come into contact with throughout their lives.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSystemic Entrepreneurship: Contemporary Issues and Case Studies
EditorsGideon Maas, P. Jones
Place of PublicationUK
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan UK
ISBN (Print)978-1-137-50980-2, 978-1-137-50978-9
Publication statusPublished - 2015


  • Entrepreneurship
  • Humanitarian Engineering
  • Systemic Entrepreneurship


Dive into the research topics of 'Humanitarian Engineering: A Route to Systemic Entrepreneurship Application across Africa'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this