Web-based Collaborative Engineering based on Information Sharing - HydroWeb: An Education Experiment in the Internet
This paper describes the concept and experiences of the international Open Distance Learning Course ‘HydroWeb’. This course deals with the introduction of Web-based Collaborative Engineering in standard education programmes of water related engineering and civil engineering based on information sharing. Organized under the umbrella of IAHR and ETNET21 this course is collaboration from several universities from all over the world. Started in 1999 the course demonstrates the potential and innovative opportunities of Web-Technology in education, research and engineering: Students from the different partner universities form small distributed teams to solve a given engineering problem in a time window of two weeks. To overcome the spatial distribution the students apply modern Web technology such as video conferencing, application sharing and document management. All results as well as the final reports are presented as Web document on a shared Web-based project platform (http://www.hydro-web.org). Besides the experiences to apply standard Web tools and working methods based on information sharing instead the conventional information exchange in the daily engineering work the students improve their soft skills operate successfully in international and interdisciplinary project environments as part of the ‘Technical Culture’ of nowadays.
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