HAMK in Africa - Häme University of applied sciences
HAMK in Africa
Map of Africa

HAMK in Africa

Partnerships for education, research and innovation

HAMK is building knowledge and competence together with African universities and partners.

In this age of globalisation, there is a great need for collaboration, new ideas and innovations, and shared resources. Häme University of Applied Sciences is actively involved in international cooperation in education and research, which will shape the future of the world. Collaboration with African partners has an impact on all HAMK’s levels:

  • Collaborative research is the tool for producing solutions suitable for local realities to create jobs and wealth. Collaborative research will also lead to sustainable development and climate change mitigation.
  • Students are in the centre of all we do. Students at HAMK as well as at African partner universities will have possibilities to enhance their international competences and to strengthen their global citizenship. Through HAMK’s collaboration in Africa, students will have more opportunities for short exchanges in multidisciplinary groups.
  • Our staff also have opportunities to increase their global through teacher exchanges, both by visiting African partner universities and by welcoming colleagues from African countries to teach at HAMK.

HAMK’s ongoing projects in Africa

21st Forestry TVET-TZ

Project website

Active pedagogy and modernised professional skills in technical and vocational forestry education in Tanzania 

The 21st Forestry TVET-TZ project advances Tanzanian forestry sector’s ecological, economical and social development through educational capacity building. The main focus is on promoting climate-smart, circular and sustainable forest resource management and forest sector entrepreneurship, employment and economic growth.

The project offers concrete support to strengthen Tanzanian forestry technical and vocational institutions’ (TVETs) and extension officers’ capacity to provide working life relevant and inclusive forestry education and training.

Duration: October/ 2022 – September / 2023
Funder: Indufor Oy / Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Finland
Budget: 154 904 €
Partners: Häme University of Applied Sciences (HAMK), Forest Industries Training Institute (FITI), Forest Training Institute (FTI), Forestry and Wood Industries Training Centre (FWITC), Participatory Plantation Forestry Programme (PFP2)



AgriSCALE is a joint initiative for reforming agri-entrepreneurship education in Kenya, Uganda and Zambia. The project includes real-life PBL cases for international student teams both online and in the field in Africa.

Duration: 2020–2023

Funded by: Erasmus+/EACEA

View project video (YouTube) and brochure (PDF)

AGS co-creation and innovation programme


The co-creation and innovation programme in Zambia empowers companies, universities, public sector, and individual citizens, to join an inclusive community that supports local SMEs.

Duration: 2021–2022

Funded by: AGS Programme (Accelerated Growth for SMEs in Zambia)

View or download the project brochure (PDF).

Cocoa business development

Project website

The Cocoa business development project is implemented in collaboration with the Kultasuklaa company and the University of Cape Coast in Ghana. The goal is to create a sustainable business model that provides a reasonable income level to the farmers and utilizes cocoa by-products in environmentally and socially sustainable ways. Team challenges of students from HAMK and UCC are one of the key methods for investigating the opportunities.

Duration: 2021–2022

Funded by: Finnpartnership



FOREST21 is a joint project for strengthening capacity in South African higher education in forestry entrepreneurship. Through curricula reformations and promoting student-centred learning and teaching, graduates will be equipped with 21st century skills to solve problems, create jobs and improve climate-smart forestry.

Duration: 2021–2024

Funded by: Erasmus+/EACEA



PBL-BioAfrica is a collaborative project for strengthening the capacity of bioeconomy education and promoting PBL methods in Kenya and Zambia. A large number of students will be equipped with practical skills and an entrepreneurial mindset through team projects with real companies and NGOs. Promoting circular economy, climate-smart agriculture and gender equality are also in the heart of PBL-BioAfrica.

Duration: 10/2020–5/2024

Funded by: HEI ICI/Edufi/MFA (the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland)

View project brochure (PDF)


RAJO is a project funded by the Finnish Ministry for Foreign Affairs for developing vocational training and improving youth employment in Somalia. HAMK is responsible for teachers’ pedagogical training and involved in developing the curricula in vocational training and a model for learning in real working life. The project coordinated by the Finnish Somalia network and is implemented in cooperation with its Finnish member organisations as well as local organisational and educational actors.

Duration: 2021–2022

Funded by: Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland (MFA)

Water Hyacinth Project

Project website

The water hyacinth Co-Creation project in Kenya examines different management and valorization options of water hyacinth biomass and their value chains. The alternative value chains are compared by different aspects: economical, societal and environmental. The main focus will be on the research needs and business potential for involved Finnish companies. During the Co-Creation phase local context will be analyzed, piloting sites in Kenya selected and a joint Co-Innovation project between consortium partners will be developed.

The project is coordinated by Häme University of Applied Sciences Bio Research Unit and implemented in collaboration with Finnish and Kenyan companies, Egerton University, ADRA Finland Foundation and Community Initiative for Development in Kenya.

Duration: 2022-2023 

Funded by: Business Finland 

Zambia for agroforestry, biodiversity and climate (Z4ABC)

Overall objective of this project is to contribute to the development of climate-relevant, productive, & sustainable transformation of agriculture, forestry, & food systems in Zambia to help achieve Nationally Determined Contributions (NDC).

Duration 4 years (48 months) April 2022-March 2026

Project is funded by EU: GCCA+/DeSIRA joint initiative on climate change & sustainable food systems

Project website


Global Sustainability studies – Join Field Work in Africa

Building a sustainable world – this is what Global Sustainability studies is about. Learn about intercultural communication and why we need to care about others’ cultures or beliefs. Learn to understand the global economic and socio-cultural processes connecting the rich and poor of the world. Learn about the global inequality challenges, discuss sustainable and respectful global development and link this to your own studies. As a HAMK student, you have an opportunity to deepen your experience through joining a real-life development project in Africa.

In total, we plan for 75 HAMK students to travel to our African partner countries between 2022–2024. Join our field challenges by taking Creating Sustainable Solutions/ Global sustainability course, open to all HAMK students.

Map with student mobility arrows from Europe to Africa

Join our courses!

We offer three courses consisting of a full 15-credit module:

  • Creating Sustainable Solutions
    •  5 ECTS, field work in Africa or project work in Finland, https://learn.hamk.fi/enrol/index.php?id=11398
    • This part is built around student challenge. In the student challenge, you learn in co-operation with multicultural teams. You will be a member of HAMK team of 5 students, and you will work in collaboration with student teams from African universities.

Field work in Africa is planned to happen during February-March 2023. We are planning to have 5-6 student challenges in Zambia, Kenya,Uganda and South Africa. The list of student challenges is updating, you can follow the situation on this web page. 

2023 Student Challenge Projects are:

Before travelling to Africa, the international teams work online to familiarize themselves with the case. The field work in an African partner university is 14 days. The international teams share ideas and develop innovative solutions to the identified challenges. Each project team is mentored by the client organisation as well as the staff of HAMK and partner universities. After the field work, the teams can continue discussing together, analyzing their cases and finding possible alternative solutions to their challenge.

The field courses are open to all HAMK students who are interested in working with bio-economy linked business and development challenges.

What does this mean for students?

If you are interested in participating in the student challenge and this course, you first have to pass Cross-cultural communication 5 ECTS and Sustainable Society and Global Economy 5 ECTS -courses.

There are few assignments in those courses that are related to the country you are about to visit, so you can wait with those assignments, until you get that information.

You can find the two courses ( Cross-cultural communications and Sustainable Society and Global Economy) from Learn.

NOTE: You don’t need to wait for the teachers approval in Pakki to start the courses. 


December 2022

  • You can apply to participate by writing and submitting a motivational letter by 18.12.2022. There will be a course in Learn for this, and you can see the instructions from there.
  • Selection of students to each case and formation of HAMK teams; 21.12.2022

February – March 2023

  • Kick off meeting; 01.02.2023, online 
  • Teams working virtually; Weekly
  • Mentoring meetings with mentors; Bi-weekly on Mondays
  • Communication plan
  • Face-to-face meetings of students before travel
  • Field work visit (14 days/team)

March–April 2023

  • De-briefing one week after the field visit
  • Mentoring of students continue
  • Mid-term presentations 
  • Communication tasks continues
  • Virtual team work continue


  • Report writing
  • Final seminar presentation; 17.05.2023
  • Final report; 26.05.2023


 This is a great opportunity for real-life learning and experiences with students in Africa!

Course structure scheme

Global Sustainability Module structure

The HAMK projects will cover the flights, in-country travel, accommodation and the stay in the partner university. Students’ self-funding includes personal travel, insurances, vaccinations and visa costs.

To learn about the field course schedule and to apply to the courses in the future, follow the information on Tuudo and the International Office.

Do you have questions or need more information about the Global Sustainability course?

HAMK Sustainable Development Degree Programme
Ulla-Maija Knuutti, Senior Lecturer

More information about the projects:

Teija Lehtonen, Senior Advisor, HAMK Bio
Tel. +358 400618 328


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Let's watch the interview with Toni and Maren students from Kenya team!

Toni and Maren share their thoughts about the trip:
What are their expectations for this trip?
How are they going to prepare for the field trip?
Do they have any fears?
How do they imagine Kenya is like?

#hamkinafrica #hamkuas #studentchallenge #

Tomorrow is the day we all have been waiting for, as the kick off meeting of our Student challenges takes place! During the day we learn more about our projects and get to meet our fellow students and mentors from Zambia, Kenya, and Uganda.

The meeting is happening via Zoom, so let’s gear up!


Since our first meeting, a lot of emotions has been in the air. In addition to enthusiasm and excitement, some second thoughts have been raising their heads.

Luckily we also talked about negative feelings, and shared each others hopes and fears. Mind mapping can also be a good tool to unpack your emotions.


Kenya team quickly found a common language. They had the first team meeting on Monday where they discussed vaccination plan, location of university and dormitory in Kenya, and responsibilities for the next 4 months.
Team members found what unites them: the desire to improve sustainability and cultural exchange.


Team South Africa here! 🌞🌍

We are all very excited about the upcoming project. Our field trip will be in April, so we started planning our vaccinations and researching the country. We have our first team meeting tomorrow. 🥳

In the picture: Romi (our mentor), Sabrina, Maija, Iida, Silja, Niko, Jari

#hamkinafrica #hamkuas #forest21 #teamwork #studentproject

Time to travel, work and learn together! Team Zambia is well prepared for our upcoming student project.

Passport and international certification of vaccination ready for takeoff, the background is going to change soon! 🌞

#hamkinafrica #hamkuas #agriscale #pblbioafrica #studentchallenge

Last week the Uganda team met for the first time, and we are all anxious to get our hands on organic fertilazers. Follow our way to Africa on Instagram #hamk_in_africa, and see how we will succeed on PBL (problem based learning)


Let the team work begin! Welcome... very happy to have all the students in the first 2023 student project here today.

#hamkinafrica #work#projects #hamkuas #studentprojects #pblbioafrica #pbl #agriscale #forest21 #forest21

We begin the year with a testimony from Florence, a student from Mulungushi University, Zambia. 🔥

Listen as she shares her experience with learning through problem based learning methodology.😊

Watch out for more stories like this 💯

#pbl #hamkinafrica #student #mulungushiuniversity #learningbydoing

Thanks for sticking around #2022. 💃into 2023 💪
#hamkinafrica #projects #forest21 #pblbioafrica #agriscale

Greetings👋 from RUFORUM AGM happening in Harare!

We are in last month of the year and a lot has happened in all projects under HAMK in Africa.

Before the Christmas break, I am here in Zimbabwe to represent our PBL- BioAfrica project where high profile people and experts are meeting for the annual general meeting of RUFORUM, the largest network of universities in Africa with 149 African Universities in 38 African Countries.

3/4 very interesting sessions have already been organized where EGU and HAMK ( PBL project members) presented on different topics from entrepreneurship, cooperation and partnership with the aim of increasing impact of our work as educators.

Project Coordinator, Dr Eija Laitinen, HAMK

#hamkinafrica #EGU #partnership #collaboration #ruforumagm2022 #hamkbiotalous #pblbioafrica

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On se aika vuodesta, kun Evon metsissä vilkkuu nauhoitettuja koealojen kulmakeppejä ja aitauksella erotettuja puita. Huomenna starttaa kauden ensimmäinen talvimetsätaitokisa, jossa opiskelijat pääsevät harjaannuttamaan puusilmää.
Latua ei näillä keleillä saada kisaradalle, mutta se ei menoa haittaa!

#opiskelu #metsätaitokilpailu #metsätalous

Ammattikorkeakoulussa on paljon tutkimus- ja kehittämistoimintaa, Mustialassa testataan lannan hygienisointia. Lanta siivitti kesällä tomaattien kasvua ja sato oli runsas sekä maukas.
We have a lot of research and development projects. In Mustiala, we are testing the sanitation of manure. Manure gave power to the tomatoes and the harvest was abundant and tasty.

#hamkmustiala #HAMK #hamkbiotalous #agrologi #mustiala #maaseutuelinkeinot
#smartorganicfarming #hevostalous

Syksy hiipii Evolle.
Ensimmäiset pakkasaamut heittävät hennon usvan Rautjärvien ylle. Ruskan värit maalaavat maisemaa.

Meneillään olevassa moduulissa kakkosvuoden opiskelijat pohtivat ilmastonmuutoksen vaikutuksia metsänhoitoon. Keskilämpötila nousee, sään ääri-ilmiöt yleistyvät ja metsätuhojen ennustetaan lisääntyvän. Kuinka voimme varautua tähän? Opinnoissa saamme ajantasaista tietoa muutoksista ja niiden vaikutuksesta metsätalouteen. Näin olemme ajan hermolla muuttuvassa ympäristössä.

#hamkbiotalous #opiskelu #metsätalousinsinööri

Metsätalousinsinöörin opintoihin kuuluu työharjoittelua 30 opintopistettä. Ensimmäinen harjoittelu on suorittavaa työtä ja toinen on asiantuntijaharjoittelu. Harjoittelut voi ajoittaa oman aikataulun mukaisesti ja usein ne suoritetaan kesäisin.
Harjoittelupaikan saa valita itse. Harjoitteluvastaava tarkistaa, että suorituspaikka ja työtehtävät soveltuvat harjoitteluun.
Sometiimin Sanna suorittaa ensimmäistä harjoittelua Sodankylässä. Kesän aikana kurkataankin mitä se pitää sisällään. Näissä maisemissa sijaitsee kesäkuussa alkavat istutustyömaat.

#hamkbiotalous #opiskelu #metsätalousinsinööri #metsä #työharjoittelu

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Torstai 12.5 starttasi käyntiin kulotuksen teorialla. Teoreettisen osuuden jälkeen lähdimme metsään kulotuskohteelle, jossa kaivoimme kuokalla palokujaa. Videolla ollaankin itse työn touhussa. 💪😎

-Nea & Jenna
#hamkbiotalous #metsätalous

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Nyt on aika laittaa käytäntöön talvella laskettujen itävyyskokeiden tietoja.
Now it is time to put into practice the data from germination tests.
#hamkmustiala #HAMK #hamkbiotalous #agrologi #mustiala #maaseutuelinkeinot
#smartorganicfarming #hevostalous

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