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Hydro-Engineering Institute was founded in 1954 by the Decision of the Sarajevo University.

Hydraulic Laboratory was built in 1957, while the Laboratory for Testing of Water Quality and office section of the building in the Street Stjepana Tomića 1, were constructed in 1961. Partial privatization by the employees took place in 1991.

On the occasion of 20 years of work and development of the Institute, it was written: "The Institute is involved in water management in an organized and complex manner, through scientific research of experimental character, and it is developing research methods, measurement instruments and application of computation techniques."

About the work on the market, the following was written "Connecting the Institute with the associated work in the economy and other social activities was beneficial not only for the financing structure, but also in the aspect of improvement of the scientific and teaching work." (this was written 35 years ago, and it is still true today).  "Large benefits from the relations with a number of similar institutions in Zagreb, Belgrade, Ljubljana, Toulouse (France), Moscow, Budapest, Vienna and Colorado (USA) were specifically emphasized. At that time, the Institute had 38 employees, 18 of them being researchers, and 48 external collaborators.

From the very beginning of its work, the Institute has intensively been engaged in complex research, that was partially programmed and financed by the economic operators. Most important of these activities was a series of macro-projects, with a short name „Karst“ („Krš“ in the local language), which were the following:

  • "Water Resources and Hydrology of Karst, 1971 - 1978, Yugoslavian - American project, 
  • "Water Management Problems of Karst," 1977 - 1980;
  • "Water as a Development Factor in Karst," 1980 - 1987;
  • "Improvement of the Methods of Water Use and Protection in the Area of Mediterranean Karst", 1986 - 1988;
  • "Hydrodynamics and Quantitative - Qualitative Regime of the Coastal Sea," 1990-1992;

From 1989 to 1992, the scientific projects called „Social Goals“ were implemented. The Institute led and coordinated the macro-project "Water Resources", which had 11 programs. For the implementation of these programmes, it was necessary to educate and train staff, which is the reason why the Faculty of Civil Engineering organized postgraduate studies in the field of water management and hydraulic engineering, supported by the implementation of the research above, which were attended by 33 students.

So far, the Institute has employed 32 doctors of science and 18 masters of science, who were usually part-time employees (mostly 50% of total working time), and nearly 200 engineers and other highly-educated profiles of different professions. Special contribution to the development of the Institute was given by several true scientists and visionaries, founders  of the University of Sarajevo and the Academy of Sciences and Arts of Bosnia and Herzegovina: Aleksander Trumić, Josip Bać, Stjepan Mikulec and Muhamed Riđanović.

Even during the second half of the war 1992-1995, and especially right after the war, the Institute very dynamically participated in the tumultuous post-war restoration, reconstruction and efforts to join the European trends. The Institute was a partner of many international organizations and consulting companies in several multidisciplinary projects in the field of water, environment and hydraulic engineering.

Continuing cooperation both in teaching and projects exists with the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, Faculty of Electrical Engineering, Faculty of Architecture and Urbanism, Faculty of Natural Sciences and Mathematics, Faculty of Agriculture, Faculty of Forestry, Faculty of Health Studies and Faculty of Political Science of Sarajevo University, as well as with the Faculties of Civil Engineering of Mostar University and  Džemal Bijedić University, and with related or complementary consulting companies, from Sarajevo, Mostar, Banja Luka, Tuzla, Bijeljina, etc.

Today, the Institute has about 60 permanent employees, nearly half of which are very young, who are, together with the older colleagues, working as a team, and continuing their education and training according to the market principles of connecting the applied science and profession, set at the Institute nearly 60 years ago.

And, at the end of of this short history of the Institute, as a conclusion, it can be said: 

There are four types of people:

  • The first type – those who work and create;
  • The second type – those who wonder at the first and what they have created;
  • The third type – those who are watching the creation and constantly finding flaws in what has been created; and
  • The fourth type – those who always dream and expect from others to create.

(Adapted from V. Vujić, "Management of Human Capital").

Needless to say, we belong to the first type.


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