International Research Collaborations
The Porter School of Environmental Studies (PSES) and Tel Aviv University (TAU) are central partners in an international, interdisciplinary research project – Dead Sea Research Venue (DESERVE). During the 5-year framework of the project, starting in 2013, TAU researchers cooperate with colleagues from education and research institutes in Israel, Germany, Jordan and the Palestinian Authority, to explore environmental and climatic changes in the Dead Sea region.
The unique Dead Sea environment is a 'natural laboratory' for the researchers, seeking educated responses to three main challenges: environmental threats, water accessibility and climate change. Research groups of differing specializations study varied aspects of the area: geology and soil, sinkholes, earthquakes, water, climate and weather, health impacts etc. Former PSES Head, Prof. Pinhas Alpert, coordinates the climate and weather research group.
The DESERVE Project is an initiative of the Helmholtz Association, Germany's largest research organization.
GLOWA Jordan River Project
PSES played a pivotal role in the GLOWA Jordan River Project – an international interdisciplinary research program, addressing the future of the Jordan River under conditions of global and climatic changes. Since 2001, researchers from the school and other faculties at Tel Aviv University, under the leadership of PSES former Head Prof. Pinhas Alpert, have worked in cooperation with colleagues from Germany, Jordan and the PA, to seek responses to threats facing the river basin.
Following the three stages of the project ending in 2012, the partners are planning to establish SAGE, a regional research center to continue the activity – Sustainable Adaptation to Global Change in the Middle East.
The GLOWA Project was initiated and sponsored by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research, in order to develop tools for sustainable water management and human and environmental welfare policies in different rivers around the world.
Israel-Italy Environmental Research and Development Program
Between 2004-2010, the Israel-Italy Environmental Research and Development Program operated at PSES, as a joint initiative of the school and the Italian Ministry of Environment, Land and Sea, under the EU neighborhood policy. This bi-national program aimed to promote joint environmental interests of the two countries, with an emphasis on the Mediterranean region, and to develop innovative technologies and solutions in a variety of essential fields: air pollution, desertification, river rehabilitation, green building, biodiversity in the Mediterranean, solar energy, climate change etc.