“The university provided me all facilities to carry out my research”
Dr. Mohamed Youssef, Hydrogeologist, Geology Department, Water Resources Division, Desert Research Center, Cairo, Egypt, currently postdoc at Tokyo University
Postdoc at Heidelberg University (Institute of Geography, department of Physical Geography), from January to June 2010.
When, how long and in what position did you stay at Heidelberg University and where do you work now?
In 2010 I was a postdoc at Heidelberg University for six months at the Institute of Geography to carry out my research concerning applications of remote sensing and GIS for water resources development. My postdoctoral was funded from the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD). At the moment I work as a postdoc at Tokyo University, and soon I will return to my permanent position in Egypt at the Desert Research Center in Cairo.
Why did you decide to come to Heidelberg University?
Indeed, I had the honor to study and carry out my research at Heidelberg University which can be considered as one of the oldest and biggest universities in Europe. I chose Heidelberg University according to the facilities and advanced tools which were provided for the research. Moreover the university provided me some advanced course in Remote Sensing and GIS. And last but not least, my host professor (Prof. Dr. Olaf Bubenzer) supported my ideas and my research plan, so I decided to come to Heidelberg University.
What were your experiences in Heidelberg?
During my work as a postdoc at Heidelberg University I gained a lot of experiences. For example, the university provided me many courses on GIS and Remote Sensing, furthermore I could attend lectures in the old lecture hall (Alte Aula), some even at the invitation of the University rector, and participate in the annual “Institutsausflug” (institute tour) which included a visit of the "Grube Messel" (UNESCO world Heritage). Also I attended many conferences, talks and presentations of the projects Global Change and Globalization at the Heidelberg Center for the Environment (HCE) as well as on Water Resource Development, and I gave talks in conferences of the working group "Desert Margin Research" as part of the German Geographical Society. I owe my professor (Prof. Dr. Olaf Bubenzer) so much: he guided me through scientific discussion, software using, manuscript writing, research planning and helped me to understand the German way of living. The university also provided me all facilities to carry out my research. Additionally, I studied the German language at the "Internationales Studienzentrum" (ISZ).
How did your career continue after your time in Heidelberg?
Indeed, my career is going very well after my research stay in Heidelberg. I published four international papers, three of them with my German professor. I travelled to China and India for other scientific undertakings, and finally I went to Tokyo University as postdoc. Also, in all my current researches I used the new technology (applications of Remote Sensing and GIS), which I came in contact with at Heidelberg University.
Do you recommend a research visit to Heidelberg University colleagues in your scientific network?
Of course I would recommend Heidelberg University to my students and fellow researchers. After my research stay in Heidelberg I have already made a presentation in Egypt and let all my students and my colleagues understand clearly the high level of education and the facilities in the university. I also told them about the amazing Heidelberg City. In addition, through my numerous scientific trips all over the world I was invited to talks where I had to introduce myself – and a part of my introduction is about what I gained from Heidelberg University.