Summer Course - Water Diplomacy

Water cooperation and diplomacy are practical fields of action and intervention dealing with how to govern water across national borders, and simultaneously emerging fields of study and reflection to understand why and how states cooperate or not, over shared water resources. You will examine various cases of cooperation as well as (potential) conflict over transboundary water, apply tools and skills to analyse the patterns of cooperation and (potential) conflict and discuss ways to foster water cooperation and prevent conflicts by diplomatic means.

For whom?

Water professionals, diplomats and professionals involved in water diplomacy activities interested in broadening their understanding of concepts, challenges and tools relating to water diplomacy.

Course content

This course will introduce participants to different concepts of water cooperation and diplomacy and the underlying theories, and provide them with relevant knowledge, tools and skills to understand and engage with transboundary water cooperation and (potential) water related conflicts.

The course will be delivered through a combination of lectures and group activities. Case studies will be used to reflect on actual and potential water related conflicts as well as cooperation processes and to learn from approaches and tools applied in practice, such as joint fact finding, negotiation and mediation. Exercises such as mapping of stakeholder networks, serious games and role plays will be conducted to understand how to approach conflict as well as cooperation processes.

Programme overview

Day 1: understanding and discussing water cooperation and diplomacy: key concepts and challenges

Day 2: introducing case studies, defining & applying suitable methods of analysis

Day 3: analysis of case studies and group work; consider adequate conflict resolution mechanisms for different settings

Day 4: serious game; role play and evaluation of experiences

Day 5: meeting a practitioner: experiences from the field; reflection on position of individual participant in (potential) water conflict; wrap up


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