BPSD Program

Introduction to the BPSD Program


“It is evident that computer modelling is here to stay, and may very well revolutionise the field…. the age of true quantification of the geosciences has arrived… it will have an economic and intellectual impact on the petroleum industry, mainly on exploration. The availability of highly skilled personnel is therefore of utmost importance for globally active petroleum companies. This new education programme focuses on the borderline between classical geoscience thinking and teaching on one hand and the mathematical-geophysical-geochemical needs of numerical simulation and geoprocess understanding on the other. It will prepare participants not only to become better explorationists or production engineers, but it also provides them with a new comprehensive and unique education. Graduates will be fit for the challenges of today with an ever increasing flood of data and the needs of a successful risk management by clearly understanding the interdependency of complex processes.“

                          Prof. Dietrich Welte (Adjunct Professor Jacobs University, Co-author ” Petroleum Formation and Occurrence”, 1984)

The global oil and gas industry is moving into a period of dramatic change: after a rock bottom was hit in the first quarter 2009, the oil price is on the rise again. In spite of high prices, demand for oil continues to grow unabated and oil companies must find fresh crude reserves to replace declining output from existing fields. On the other hand, the industry is currently exerted to renew its social legitimacy in the face of its impact on the environment and the consequent public questioning. New industry dynamics are meanwhile emerging with the changing relationship between international and national oil companies, with the latter now competing directly for supply access to foreign reserves, companies, people and technology. Rising prices are the net effect of significant supply side factors driving restructuring in the industry, with an increase in the premium for assets and, just as importantly, skilled people. This is where the industry faces a big challenge – attracting the next generation of skilled engineers and leaders to an industry with an ageing workforce.

The oil and gas industry has been a leading player in exploiting the power of virtual reality technology to enhance its business processes. The pressure to reduce exploration and development costs of new reserves and existing fields is immense: drilling wells, for example, may consume up to 85% of the total exploratory funds. Thus, the decision to drill should be taken in a sensible way based on studies that provide detailed knowledge of the area’s geologic conditions, both on the surface and in the subsurface. Therefore, knowledge of basin and petroleum system dynamics is key: a fundamental understanding of geoprocess occurring at different spatial and temporal timescales enables specialists to quickly and comprehensively interpret and manage large volumes of geodata, thus is significantly reducing cycle time for prospect generation.

The field of petroleum geosciences is evolving constantly. A comprehensive integrative course where geoscientists are brought up to date with the latest developments in all critical domains (geophysics, geology, mathematics, chemistry, reservoir and petroleum engineering) is, however, not readily available. At Jacobs University Bremen, this gap will be closed by the part-time Executive Master programme in Basin and Petroleum System Dynamics (BPSD).