The beginning of PPGERHAâs activities can be directly related with fundamental works of the 1980âs. The city of Curitiba is the ecological capital of Brazil and capital of the State of Parana, a state that is rich in water resources and has an installed hydroelectric power (not considering the major hydroelectric power plant of Itaipu) bigger than the one installed in Germany. It is also headquarters of the LACTEC Institutes, Sanitation Company of Parana (SANEPAR) and COPEL, which are major partners of the program and important institutions of water resources, energy and environmental management. Curitiba represents a great environment for growth in the previously mentioned areas.
PPGERHA, initially called Master Course in Hydraulics Engineering and concentrating its areas in Hydraulic Works and Water Resources, was created in 1985. Because of the growing interest of society and of engineers in environmental matters, a new area of concentration was added to the program in 1997, called Environmental Engineering. In 2002, in order to maintain coherence between the name of the program and its areas of concentration, together with a context of a recent organizational order in the areas of Water Resources in the country, the name of the program was altered to Water and Environmental Resources Engineering â PPGERHA. It had three areas of concentration: Hydraulics Engineering, Hydrological Engineering and Environmental Engineering. From January of 2007 onwards, the program was reorganized into the two areas that we have today.
A more important and positive element of the program was the addition of a doctoral course in 2009. Its first students graduated as Doctors in the area in 2013, demonstrating a significant trajectory of the program. Apart from bringing more visibility and interest in the academic context, the doctoral course elevated the program into one of profound high level research, allowing for international interaction. The first big multinational project was elaborated successfully in this period: the Rede Europa-AmÃ©rica do Sul para a AvaliaÃ§Ã£o de MudanÃ§as ClimÃ¡ticas e Estudos de Impacto na Bacia do Prata / CLARIS-LPB, a project coordinated by DHS/PPGERHA, with an involvement of many professors of the program and supported by the European community. Moreover, there are projects of cooperation with the National Autonomous University of Mexico (Mexico), with the University of Cape Town (South Africa) and a technical cooperation with the Institut National des Sciences AppliquÃ©es (INSA) of Rouen, in France (Double Degree in Civil Engineering, coordinated by a professor of the PPGERHA). Recently, the program strengthened the existing cooperation agreement of graduate exchange (UNIBRAL) between UFPR and the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (Germany), receiving approval in an exchange post-graduate program, supported by the state of Baden-Wuerttemberg in Germany, with scholarships and airplane tickets for both Germans and Brazilians, and also receiving support of Summer-schools. The consequence of these activities is that there was a growing interest by the students of doing a sandwich PhD. More than eleven students have already participated in this program, resulting in one Masters Dissertation and two Doctoral Thesis written in English. Additionally, the program has increased its number of newly foreign and Brazilian doctors participating in the Post-Doctoral PPGERHA course, or participating of a new PPGERHA program called âCapacitation Program for Young Doctor Professorsâ, supporting new teachers in orientations, during classes and laboratorial research.
For the past 15 years, the program accompanied changes in research and education related to global changes, as well as great changes in Brazil, growing strongly and requiring sustainable and environmentally correct solutions, and meeting necessities imposed by climatic changes and changes. PPGERHA has consolidated into one of the first post-graduate programs that gathers traditional areas such as Hydraulics, Hydrology and Sanitation with Environmental areas, having as a focus to integrate the compartments of atmosphere, hydrosphere and lithosphere for environmental and climatic research related to engineering while making quantitative considerations.
A very promising evolution of PPGERHA has been occurring in the past four years, after getting approval in the participation of Research and Development projects of great size. One project, financed by Eletrobras for the construction and consolidation of the LENHS laboratories, was continued through the funding of masters and doctoral scholarships and through the courses of SANEPAR and LENHS. Another big project was funded by 14 concessionaires in the electrical sector in the 9th ANEEL Call, with great participation of students and professors of the program. Since 2013, the program has been participating in study of the technical, economic and environmental viability (EVTEA) of the hydro way of the Paraguay River, coordinated by ITTI of UFPR and funded by DNIT. These new projects have brought new equipment, along with many scholarships for the program, as well as the possibility of intermediate employees being hired through the University foundation.