Open Course on Science Communication for Water Cooperation and Diplomacy

This open online course enables you to develop practical skills to confidently engage with the media and effectively communicate your research and professional work. Although relevant to anyone wishing to improve their science communication, the course is most relevant to those whose research is related to water conflicts, cooperation and diplomacy. It uses examples and case studies specifically relevant to those working in the Nile, Brahmaputra and Lake Chad basins and takes account of the particular sensitivities around communicating science in these areas.

For whom?

Natural, applied and social scientists – including PhD students – carrying out research and programme implementation in the field of water conflict, cooperation and diplomacy.

Dates and Fee

  • Start/end: 02 March- 30 April 2021
  • Deadline for registration: 01 March 2021
  • Course fee: Free

Learning objectives

Upon successful completion of this course, you will be able to:

  • explain how the media works
  • effectively communicate your research to journalists or other targeted audiences
a great opportunity for researchers who are working in various water basins to develop practical skills to confidently engage with the media and communicate about their work in a way that enhances water diplomacy and cooperation
Dr Charles Wendo, Training Coordinator at SciDev.Net

Course content

The first part of the course is divided in 4 weekly modules, expected to take in total 10-16 hours to complete:

  • Module 1: How to work with the media
  • Module 2: Making water science interesting to journalists and their audiences
  • Module 3: Simplifying your science and dealing with numbers and statistics
  • Module 4: Designing and implementing a research communication strategy
  • Module 5: From science to story
  • Module 6: How to shoot a vlog with your phone
  • Module 7: How to make a podcast
  • Module 8: How to write a blog post
  • Module 9: How to create a story-map

Working method

This is an online, self-directed course. In the first part of the course, moderation and feedback will be provided both by peers in the online environment and by Dr Charles Wendo (Training Coordinator at SciDev.Net), an experienced science journalist and media trainer, who holds a master’s degree in journalism and communication, a postgraduate diploma in mass communication and a bachelor’s degree in veterinary medicine.

This first part of the course (Modules 1-4) is expected to take 8-10 hours to complete. A certificate of participation will be issued to the participants that successfully complete this first part.

In the second part of the course (Module 5-8), participants can choose to engage with one (or more) media (blogpost, podcast, video, story-map) and produce an original piece of work to communicate their research. They will be guided in producing these pieces of work through online self-directed modules and through live sessions of feedback by the trainers.

A certificate of completion will be issued to participants who successfully complete the first and the second part of the course.

Handbook and podcast on media in water conflict and cooperation

If you want to learn more about the role of media and communication in water conflict and cooperation you can read Water Conflicts and Cooperation: A Media Handbook ,available as an open access eBook, and you can listen to the podcast with the handbook’s editor and authors.


Step 0. Have you already created an account to access IHE Delft Open Education?
If you created an account to access one of our open courses in the past, you can use the same username and password to login. Then, go to Step 2 - Register/Enrol Yourself in the Course. If you created an account in the past, but forgot your password, click on “Forgot Password?”. 

Step 1. Create a New Account in the IHE Open Education website
Click on Create New Account, fill in your username, password etc., an 'account confirmation' email will be sent to you (check also in your spam e-mailbox, particularly if you have a Gmail account), use the 'web address' received to confirm your new account and login using your username and password

Step 2. Register/enrol yourself in the course
Click on the title, click on 'Enrol me in this course' (under the arrow in the upper right side/below your username), click on 'Enrol me' in the page 'Enrolment options' to complete the process (the course coordinator will send you an 'welcome' email and your name will be listed as course participant).


  • For general curriculum questions contact Charles Wendo, Training Coordinator at SciDev.Net: charles.wendo[at]
  • For all other course inquiries contact Emanuele Fantini, IHE Delft Institute for Water Education: e.fantini[at]


This course is offered by the project “Open Water Diplomacy. Media, Science and Transboundary Cooperation in the Nile basin”, funded by the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs Global Partnership for Water and Development, and implemented by IHE Delft Institute for Water Education, SciDev.Net, Nile Basin Capacity Building Network, Water Journalists Africa and the University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg.


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