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Future raw materials experts from all over the world attend winter school in Freiberg

Press release published jointly with TU Bergakademie Freiberg on 16 January 2017

The youngsters attending the Winter Business School (9th - 27th January 2017) come from Brazil, Colombia, China and India as well as many other parts of the world and have already graduated in subjects such as Geology, Mineral Engineering, Physics and Chemistry. They are united by a desire to identify solutions to the challenges faced by the raw materials industry and to obtain a European Master’s in Georesources Engineering. This includes a three-week winter school in Freiberg, Saxony. 18 students from the course are taking part.

As well as scientific training, the Winter Business School (also attended by four international students from TU Bergakademie Freiberg) is intended to provide business management skills that are relevant to the mining industry. It is a joint initiative by the Helmholtz Institute Freiberg for Resource Technology (HIF), which is part of the Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf, and TU Bergakademie Freiberg. Sponsored by the European network, EIT RawMaterials, the course focuses specifically on business and intercultural communication, project and operational management, accounting and finance, marketing, business planning and environmental management. A number of excursions are also on the programme.

EMerald Master in Georesources Engineering LogoMost of the students on the Georesources Engineering Master’s programme have been awarded a scholarship by the European Union as part of the Erasmus Mundus (EMerald) scheme. The course is oriented towards both raw materials and engineering. It purveys knowledge about the origin and characterisation of mineral resources as well as modern technologies for their use. Jens Gutzmer, Professor of Economic Geology and Petrology at TU Bergakademie Freiberg and Director at HIF: “The purpose is to train a whole new generation of raw materials experts who will then be able to build bridges between the various sectors in the raw materials chain.” Both institutions collaborate on the Master’s degree course in a network that also includes the Université de Liège (Belgium), the Université de Lorraine - ENSG Nancy (France) and the Luleå Tekniska Universitet (Sweden). Upon completing the Winter Business School, the students will begin to write their dissertations.

Building bridges in the raw materials industry

Jens Gutzmer: “In order to overcome the pressing problems of raw materials management, it is important that the different industrial sectors collaborate more efficiently on exploration and extraction right through to the recycling of valuable materials.” These problems include the diminishing quality of metal and mineral ores, the concomitant additional costs and the issue of how mining and the subsequent processing of metals and minerals can be done in an environmentally friendly manner.

There are currently 37 students from all around the world studying for their Master’s in Georesources Engineering – 19 in the first year and 18 in the second. There are 27 previous graduates from this course. Further information:

Media contact:

Anja Weigl | Press officer
Helmholtz Institute Freiberg for Resource Technology
Tel. +49 351 260–4427| E-Mail:

Madlen Domaschke | Press officer
TU Bergakademie Freiberg
Tel. +49 3731 39-2930 | E-Mail: