Partners › Lund University (LU)


About University

Lund University (LU) is a comprehensive university with 47 000 students. The University is ranked as one of the top 100 in the world. LU has internationalization as one of her four strategies to achieve the vision of becoming a world-class university. As part of this strategy LU cooperates with universities all over theworld through bilateral agreements, educational and research programmes, networks and research collaboration. The university has about 680 student exchange partner universities in over 50 countries and welcomes about 3100 international Master’s and 1500 exchange students to Lund University. The numbers of courses and programmes taught in English are 90 Masters programmes and about 500 single subject courses. In EMA 1, LU participates in 7 programmes. In Erasmus Mundus External Cooperation Window/Action 2, LU has a long track record from being one of the first universities coordinating and participating as partner up till today. LU is coordinating 11 projects (Jordan/Syria/Lebanon, India, China, Asia regional, Iran/Iraq/Yemen) and has been partner in over 30 projects. LU also participates in three EM3 projects. In addition, LU has participated in almost all major European, Nordic and Swedish international educational cooperation programs such as LLP (Erasmus Structural Network JOIMAN and JOI.CON, Socrates, Erasmus, Minerva etc), Leonardo, Linnaeus-Palme, Nordplus, SIDA-projects as well as Jean Monnet besides other activities within the EU Research Framework programmes. In FP7 LU is participating in 240 projects and coordinates 14. LU is also currently coordinating GeoNetC and EPCA, Erasmus+ projects funded 2015 and 2017 respectively. LU with its Lund University GIS Centre, Department of physical geography and ecosystem science, and Division of Risk Management and Society Safety has a strong research and education backbone in spatial information science and technologies (geographic information system, remote sensing, and spatial data infrastructures), environmental management and protection, and disaster risk management. Close collaboration between these three sectors opens new doors for multidisciplinary and innovative research and education activities.


Role in the project

LU is the coordinating institute of the project. All coordination activities, such as organizing the meetings including steering committee meetings, financial management, dividing of tasks, progress and quality control, and reporting, will be conducted by LU. The university also participates in the development of courses, training of trainers (ToT) and dissemination activities. LU will lead setting up of e-learning systems in partner universities and will lead the development of a Web Portal allowing sharing spatial information which will be used by stakeholders. LU will train experts from partner countries on how to use and support the system and also will help/guide them with data collection for the practical use of the system.


Project Members



  • Ali Mansourian

Associate Professor Dr. Mansourian is the coordinator of the EMME project. He is Deputy Director of Lund University GIS Center and a member of the Center for Middle Eastern Studies, concentrating on MECW (The Middle East in the Contemporary World), one of the Lund University’s strategic research areas. He is a council member of Association of Geographic Information Laboratories in Europe (AGILE) and also senior adviser of World Health Organization Regional office in Europe (WHO/Europe) on using geographical information systems (GIS) for emergency risk management.

Dr. Mansourian is an expert in Geomatics Engineering with concentration on geographical Information Systems (GIS) and Spatial Data Infrastructures (SDI). He is expert in design, development, implementation, and evaluation of GIS and SDI; spatial modelling using techniques from artificial intelligence and machine learning; researcher with considerable experience from Sweden/Europe and developing countries (mainly Africa, Middle East and Central Asia). His research interests are on both technical and applied aspects of GIS/SDI. In application areas his research focuses on spatial epidemiology/health, disaster management, and urban planning. In technical parts his research has focus on semantic Web, geospatial services and service composition, digitalized and spatially-enabled society, VGI, and open data.

Ali Mansourian has long standing experience in project design, planning, coordination and implementation of national and international research and capacity building projects and long experience is organizing conferences and workshops at both national and international levels. He is also well experienced in organizing and conducting GIS and SDI courses.

Dr. Mansourian has written more than 150 published peer-reviewed scientific articles, books, and book chapters. He is evaluator of international scientific journals and European grants such as Horizon 2020 and ERC. He has supervised (3)/co-supervised (5) PhD students in Sweden, Iran, Uganda, Mozambique, Rwanda, and Tanzania and currently is supervising 3 PhD students in Sweden.

For more information visit:

  • Ali Mansourian

Selected Publications:



  • Petter Pilesjö

Professor Dr. Petter Pilesjo is the Director of Lund University GIS Centre, and the former co-director of the Center for Middle Eastern Studies at Lund University. He has extensive experience from capacity building projects in the Middle East, e.g. being the coordinator for a Tempus project in the region, as well as the coordinator for Erasmus Mundus External Cooperation Window for Iran, Iraq, and Yemen, and coordinating an Erasmus+ project involving Iran and Iraq.
Prof. Pilesjöis an expert in Geomatics, e-learning and natural resource management and modeling. He is a spatial modeler, expert in hydrological/topographic modeling, researcher and geographer with considerable (>30 years) experience from Sweden/Europe and developing countries (mainly Africa, Asia, Middle East). His work is focusing on GIS in environment – climate change, migration, disaster management, health studies, school mapping, implementation of GIS, and pedagogic research in natural science, social sciences (e.g., regional development and economy), as well as on technical issues (modeling and algorithm development). Prof. Pilesjö has deep knowledge in hydrological modeling, topographical modeling/interpolation, coastal planning, morphometry, remote sensing, and positioning (including GPS).
He has significant experience in project design, planning, coordination and implementation of international research and capacity building project, and long experience in organizing and conducting GIS courses and workshops in Sweden as well as in developing countries. Pilesjö got the “Best teacher award”, Faculty of Engineering, Lund University, 1996, and the “Lund University pedagogic price” 2009.
Prof. Pilesjö has written more than 65 published books, scientific articles, booklets, and exercises on theoretical and practical GIS and its implementation, including more than 30 peer-reviewed articles published in scientific journals. He is the head of LUMA-GIS (Lund University Master’s Program in Geographical Information Systems), and Swedish coordinator of the Erasmus Mundus International Master’s program “Geo-information and Earth Observation for Environmental Modeling and Management”.
Apart from being the overall coordinator, he has been the Swedish coordinator of Erasmus Mundus External Cooperation Window lot 8, Iran, Iraq and Yemen since 2007, lot 10, Africa Caribbean Pacific, since 2008, and lot 2, Egypt since 2009. He has a PhD in physical geography/soil erosion/GIS 1992. Associate professor 2000. Professor 2012. Pilesjö is appointed as ERC evaluator and chairing ERC SH3/SH2 panel since 2014. He is Swedish coordinator for the ongoing Sida/Sarec projects at Makerere University, Faculty of Arts, and National University of Rwanda, GIS Centre.
He supervises PhD students (5) in Sweden as well as in Uganda, Rwanda and Tanzania, linked to Sida/Sarec projects. As mentioned above he is coordinating an Erasmus+ capacity building project in Iran and Iraq.

  • Petter Pilesjö
Some of his publications relevant to the topic of this project are:
  • Sorensen, J., Persson, A., Sternudd, C., Aspegren, H., et al. (2016). Re-thinking urban flood management – time for a regime shift, Water 2016, 8(8), 332.
  • Rajabi, M.R., Pilesjo, P., Shirzadi, M.R., Fadaei, R., Mansourian, A. (2016). A spatially explicit agent-based modeling approach for the spread of cutaneous leishmaniasis disease in central Iran, Isfahan, Environmental Modeling & Software, 82, 330-346.
  • Pilesjö, P., Al-Juboori, S.S. (2016). Modeling the Effects of Climate Change on Hydroelectric Power in Dokan, Iraq. International Journal of Energy and Power Engineering. Special Issue: Modeling and Simulation of Electric Power Systems and Smart Grids. Vol. 5, No.1- 2, 2016, pp. 7-12.
  • Tang, J., Miller, P.A., Crill, P.M., Olin, S., Pilesjö, P., (2014). Investigating the influence of two different flow routing algorithms on soil-water-vegetation interactions using the dynamic ecosystem model LPJ-GUESS. Ecohydrology 06/2014.
  • Boyi Jiang, Yazidhi Bamutaze, Petter Pilesjö (2014). Climate change and land degradation in Africa: a case study in the Mount Elgon region, Uganda. Geo-spatial Information Science 02/2014; 17(1):39- 53.



  • Mahdi Farnaghi

Dr. Mahdi Farnaghi has a Ph.D. in Geomatics. He is currently a researcher at the Department of Physical Geography and Ecosystem Science, Lund University. His PhD thesis, entitled “Development of Intelligent Agents for Automatic Composition of Geospatial Web Services,” was written with the main focus on geospatial service composition and chaining. He is an expert in the technological aspects of SDI and Geospatial data, including web mapping, geospatial web services and web service composition, geoportals, semantic web and location-based services. As a researcher, he has been working on big spatial data handling and processing as well as applying machine learning techniques for spatial data mining on big geospatial datasets and streaming geospatial data.

  • Mahdi Farnaghi
Some of his selected publications relevant to the topic of this project are:
  • Dareshiri, S., M. Farnaghi, M. Sahelgozin, (2017). "A recommender geoportal for geospatial resource discovery and recommendation." Journal of Spatial Science: 1-23,
  • Ghaemi, Z., M. Farnaghi and A. Alimohammadi, (2015). Hadoop- based Distributed System for Online Prediction of Air Pollution Based on Support Vector Machine. In The 3rd International Conference on Sensors and Models in Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (SMPR 2015), in Int. Arch. Photogramm. Remote Sens. Spatial Inf. Sci. 2015. Kish Island, Iran: Copernicus Publications.
  • Farnaghi, M., Mansourian, A. (2013). Disaster planning using automated composition of semantic OGC web services: A case study in sheltering, Computers, Environment and Urban Systems, 41, 204- 218.
  • Farnaghi, M., Mansourian, A. (2013). Automatic Composition of WSMO based Geospatial Semantic Web Services using Artificial Intelligence Planning, Journal of Spatial Science, 58(2), 235-250.



  • Mohammed Almahfati

Dr. Almahfali is a researcher at the Center for Middle Eastern Studies, LU on a fellowship from Institute of International Education, Scholar Rescue Fund (IIE-SRF). He received his Ph.D. in Arabic literature from Cairo University in 2014. He worked at Hadhramout University, Yemen as a lecturer (2006- 2010) then as an assistant professor in Arabic literature (2014-2016). Dr. Almahfali used to be ahead of Arabic Language department in College of Education – Socotra Island, Hadhramout University. At the same time, he assisted in establishing of Community College Socotra, and work as a dean assistant for academic affairs: 2014-2016. He took a lot of courses and workshops such as: Workshop “Vision, Mission, Values” in College of Education- Socotra2014, Corse: “Effective Teaching” in Center of Academic Development and Quality Assurance, Hadhramout University, 2014, and Corse: “How To Prepare A research Project” in Center of Academic Development and quality assurance, Hadhramout University, 2015. Dr. Almahfali has a great experience in design and development of course material in Arabic and very well familiar with teaching and educational system in Yemen.

  • Mohammed Almahfati
  • Almahfali, M. Textual Transformation in Modern Arabic Novels. 2017 1 ed. Amman- Jordan: Dar Konoz Al- Ma'refa. 360 p.
  • Almahfali, M. Employment of Narrative in Modern Arabic Poetry. 2013 Algeria: Dar Al- Tanweer Algeria. 220 p.
  • Almahfali, M. Critical Discourse in the Arabic Narrative, Pragmatic Approach. 2016 In: Studies in Translation and Discourse Analysis, Khanshala University, Algeria. 1, p. 112 130 p., 10
  • Almahfali, M. Cultural Patterns in the Book of “Kalila and Domna. 2016 In: Semat. 4, 1, p. 15 36 p.
  • Almahfali, M. Poetics of Argumentative Discourse in Albahlani's Poetry. 2016 Alnnas Alshery Keraat Tatbykyah, Bohoth Mohakkamah (Poetic Text, Applied Readings, Peer-Reviewed Researches). 1 ed. Beirut- Lebanon, p. 678 710 p.



  • Irma Habermann

Irma Habermann is an economist at the Department of Physical Geography and Ecosystem Science, Lund University. She has education from College of Applied Sciences in Eslöv, Sweden as accountant. Irma is very well experienced in  managing economies of the EU projects. She has the experience of managing economies of FP6, FP7, Horizon 2020, Erasmus Mundus External Cooperation Window, Tempus and many other research projects at the department. She has 10 years of working experience in economy.

  • Project member
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  • Micael Runnström

Dr. Micael Runnström has a PhD in Physical Geography and is employed as Senior Lecturer at the Department of Physical Geography and Ecosystem Science, Lund University, and is also a member of Lund University’s GIS Center.

He is involved in the management group of GeoNetC, an Erasmus+ project for capacity building in Iran and Iraq, and is involved in different capacity building projects, funded by SIDA, in P.R. Lao, Rwanda, Uganda and Mozambique focusing on curriculum development, teaching practices in Geo-sciences and disaster and natural resource management. He is also a member in an Advance Study Group at Lund University focusing on The Nature of Peace: – Impacts on the environment in post-conflict societies.

Dr. Runnström wrote his PhD thesis on developing a light-use efficiency model to assess biological production (GPP) fed with daily climate data and satellite  imagery for a 20-year time series with the objective of assessing the environmental status and biological change in the northern semi-arid parts of China. He has extensive knowledge and skills in applied methods to analyze geo-spatial data of different kinds and for different purposes.

He has worked with curriculum development at the Dept. of Physical Geography on campus but also for an e-Learning MSc program in Geographical information Science, and has since the 1990s as developed multiple courses and course materials at both undergrad and postgrad levels in geographical information science and remote sensing (Earth observation from satellite data). He has also  for 6 years been the Study advisor and coordinator for the above mentioned MSc  program.

  • Micael Runnström

Selected Publications:

  • Ólafsdóttir, R., Sæþórsdóttir, A.D. and Runnström, M. (2016). Purism Scale Approach for Wilderness Mapping in Iceland. In: Carver, S. & Fritz, S. (eds) Mapping wilderness: Concepts, Techniques and Applications. Springer. Chapter  11; 157-176
  • Lubida, A., Pilesjö, P., Espling, M. & Runnström, M. (2014). Applying the theory of planned behavior to explain geospatial data sharing for urban planning and  management: cases from urban centers in Tanzania. African Geographical Review. DOI:10.1080/19376812.2014.892433
  • Bou Kheir, R., Abdallah, C., Runnström, M. & Mårtensson, U. (2008). Designing erosion management plans in Lebanon using remote sensing, GIS and decision-tree modeling. Landscape and Urban Planning 88:54-63.
  • Runnström, M., Brogaard, S. and Olsson, L. (2006). Estimation of PAR over northern China from daily NOAA AVHRR cloud cover classifications. Geocarto International 21:1-10.
  • Brogaard, S., Runnström, M. & Seaquist, J. (2005). Primary Production of Inner Mongolia, China between 1982 and 1999 estimated by a satellite-driven light use efficiency model. Global and Planetary Change 45:313-332.



  • David Tennebaum

David is Canadian, and his Bachelors and Masters degrees were at the University of Toronto Department of Geography, in his hometown of Toronto.

He travelled to the South of the United States to do his Ph.D. at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.  His dissertation work was entitled 'Multi-scale Analysis of Moisture Patterns in Urbanizing Landscapes'. 

After a post-doc with Environment Canada, David was an assistant professor at the University of Massachustts, Boston for several years.  Following a year as a lecturer at the University of Miami, he moved to his current position of Senior Lecturer at the Department of Physical Geography and Ecosystem Science at Lund University.

David's research and teaching are focussed upon a mixture of ecohydrology and geographic information science.  He makes use of remote sensing, simulation modeling, and a wide range of GIS-based methods to address ecohydrological problems, particularly in urbanizing and agricultural landscapes.

  • David Tennebaum

Selected Publications:

  • Riverine dissolved organic carbon in Rukarara River Watershed, Rwanda
    Fabien Rizinjirabake, Abdulhakim M. Abdi, David E. Tenenbaum & Petter Pilesjö, 2018 Dec 1, In : Science of the Total Environment. 643, p. 793-806 14 p.

  • Patchy field sampling biases understanding of climate change impacts across the Arctic
    Metcalfe, D. B., Hermans, T. D. G., Ahlstrand, J., Becker, M., Berggren, M., Björk, R. G., Björkman, M. P., Blok, D., Chaudhary, N., Chisholm, C., Classen, A. T., Hasselquist, N. J., Jonsson, M., Kristensen, J. A., Kumordzi, B. B., Lee, H., Mayor, J. R., Prevéy, J., Pantazatou, K., Rousk, J. & 9 others, Anders Ahlström, David E. Tenenbaum & Abdulhakim M. Abdi, 2018 Sep, In : Nature Ecology and Evolution. 2, 9, p. 1443-1448

  • Data for dynamics analysis of riverine dissolved organic in watersheds
    Fabien Rizinjirabake, Abdulhakim M. Abdi, David E. Tenenbaum & Petter Pilesjö, 2018, In : Data in Brief. 20, p. 1252-1255 4 p.

  • Examining the NDVI-rainfall relationship in the semi-arid Sahel using geographically weighted regression
    Georganos, S., Abdulhakim M. Abdi, David E. Tenenbaum & Kalogirou, S., 2017 Nov, In : Journal of Arid Environments. p. 64-74
    Contribution to journal › Article

  • Evaluating Water Controls on Vegetation Growth in the Semi-Arid Sahel Using Field and Earth Observation Data
    Abdulhakim Abdi, Niklas Boke-Olén, David Tenenbaum, Torbern Tagesson, Cappelaere, B. & Jonas Ardö, 2017 Mar 21, In : Remote Sensing. 9, 3, 294.

  • The supply and demand of net primary production in the Sahel
    Hakim Abdi, Jonathan Seaquist, David Tenenbaum, Lars Eklundh & Jonas Ardö, 2014, In : Environmental Research Letters. 9, 9, p. 094003-11

  • A multi-scale hydroclimatic analysis of runoff generation in the Athabasca River, western Canada
    Peters, D. L., Atkinson, D., Monk, W. A., David Tenenbaum & Baird, D. J., 2013, In : Hydrological Processes. 27, 13, p. 1915-1934