Ardhi University

May, 2023

Ardhi University (ARU) is a public academic institution located in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. Since initially being established as the Survey Training Centre in 1956, Ardhi has undergone institutional transformation, and finally became a fully-fledged University in 2007. The University’s vision is to become a leading center of excellence in knowledge generation and dissemination that is responsive to the dynamics of the national, regional, and global conditions.

Ardhi University Campus
Ardhi University Campus. Image credit: Ardhi University.

Ardhi University is unique in its integrated training and research approaches, focusing on developing knowledgeable, highly skilled, and competent graduates in the areas of land development, built environment, and environmental studies. It hosts a combination of degree programmes that are seldom found in one institution across Sub-Saharan Africa. The University’s programmes are oriented towards enhancing both rural and urban development activities that are cost-effective, have minimal environmental footprint, and are resilient to climate change and other disasters.

Ardhi is dedicated to contributing to sustainability in Tanzania, Africa, and the world at large. The University’s urban and rural training and research activities promote sustainable land administration, sustainable architectural and infrastructure design, and financially responsible development practices. Such practices are also aligned with developing resilience against disasters and adequate environmental management to ensure that today’s development does not compromise future demands. As such, the University hosts disaster management programs aimed at understanding, reducing, and managing threats, as well as strengthening the resilience of communities to climate change and other disaster impacts. 

Through its school of engineering and environmental studies, the University also conducts environmental training and research focusing on waste management and resources management and recovery to reduce drivers of environmental degradation and greenhouse gas emissions. These are complemented by research and consultative support on low-cost construction materials, among others, that are implemented by the University's Institute of Building Research.

In response to the increasing challenges faced by rapidly urbanizing areas in Africa, Ardhi University hosts the African Centre for Sustainable Cities Studies, which aims to build capacity in education, research, innovation, and societal outreach to foster an inclusive and sustainable built environment in the city of Dar Es Salaam. The Centre has three core missions:

  • Organizing and facilitating participatory and interdisciplinary research
  • Overseeing education and training activities
  • Coordinating inclusive societal outreach in sustainable cities-related issues  

The Centre seeks to ensure that city policies, strategies and plans are informed by best practices and are tailored to local contexts, and strive to ensure that cities are more livable, resilient, and sustainable for all.