Young Water Diplomats Program

The Young Water Diplomats Program provides diplomats and professionals with a background in foreign affairs, international relations or international law with relevant and up-to-date knowledge about water, the various challenges water resources face under a changing climate, as well as its technical management and tools for transboundary governance.

Learning objectives

The content of the program is designed to enhance an interdisciplinary understanding of transboundary water challenges and advance tools for water diplomacy, as well as to strengthen professional networking among the next generation of leading water and environmental diplomats.

Successful completion of the program will enable early career diplomats to strengthen their expertise and skills in contributing to prevention and mitigation of conflicts related to water and environment, as well as to environmental peacebuilding. Knowledge gained through the Program is relevant for diplomats in national services as well specialists working for regional and international organizations.

After this six-month programme, participants will be able to:

  • Understand key aspects of water resources and the challenges they face (including the hydrological cycle, hydrological monitoring and modelling, infrastructure and its effects, climate change impacts)
  • Evaluate key challenges that transboundary freshwaters (ground- and surface water) face under different conditions
  • Understand key aspects of water resources management (including integrated water resources management approaches, water governance concepts and tools and approaches to water diplomacy)
  • Assess and apply different institutional arrangements and diplomatic tools for water cooperation
  • Analyse and compare lessons learnt from water conflict and cooperation in different basins in the world
  • Integrate interdisciplinary knowledge in problem-solving and collaborate in intercultural and transdisciplinary teams.
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Content and time plan

The Young Water Diplomats Program will be conducted in the period between January and June 2022 (six months). During this period, participants will be engaged in online and in-person learning activities consisting of lectures, reading assignments, discussions with experts, as well as individual and group assignments.

Thematic lectures delivered by leading academics will be coupled with interventions from practitioners. Interactive meetings with diplomats who have prominent experience in the fields of water diplomacy and environmental peace-building will create additional space for sharing experiences and getting first-hand knowledge. The program involves participation in the Water and Peace Seminar, and annual science-policy dialogue organized by IHE Delft that brings together scientists, policy makers and practitioners to share experiences and gain more insights into transboundary water cooperation.

Lecturers

Among others, the following lecturers will be engaged in the Program delivery:

Prof. Aaron Wolf 
Prof. Aaron Wolf is a Professor of Geography at Oregon State University (OSU) and Professor of Water cooperation and diplomacy at IHE Delft. He is a world-renowned water diplomacy expert, negotiator and advisor in the fields of water cooperation and water diplomacy. Prof. Aaron Wolf has worked with numerous international organizations, national governments, civil society groups and faith communities and he has been engaged in many of the world’s famous and less well-known water conflicts, helping conflicting parties to find a common ground in the use of their precious shared water resources.

 

Dr. Graham Jewitt
Before joining IHE Delft in 2019 as Professor of Hydrology Dr. Graham Jewitt was Director of the Centre for Water Resources Research and Umgeni Water Chair of Water Resources Research at the University of KwaZulu-Natal in South Africa. Over the past twenty years, he has led several water and earth system science related initiatives, both in South Africa and abroad, with the relationship between land and water an overarching research thrust. He is on the editorial board of the journals, Hydrology and Earth System Sciences (HESS) and WaterSA, is a member of the management board of Waternet and is active in several other national and international fora.

 

Dr. Shreedar Maskey
With a background in hydraulics, hydrology and mechanics and hydroinformatics, Dr. Shreedar Maskey developed expertise in modelling water resources systems and application of models for floods, droughts and climate change impact assessment. He has worked with a large number of river basins, including Mekong, Yellow, Yangtze, Koshi, Bagmati, Red River and Karkheh (Asia), Aral Sea Basin (Central Asia), Loire and Vit Rivers (Europe), Limpopo, Blue Nile, Pangani and Incomati, Niger, Rufiji (Africa) and others.

 

Dr. Susanne Schmeier
Dr. Susanne Schmeier is an Associate Professor of Water Law and Diplomacy at IHE Delft. Her research, teaching and advisory activities focus on the legal and institutional dimensions of water resources management at both the (sub-)national and the transboundary levels, the role of agreements and river basin organizations in promoting and maintaining sustainable water resources management, the linkages between water insecurity and conflict and related entry points for water-based cooperation and negotiation processes.

 

Dr. Daniel Valero Huerta
Dr. Daniel Valero Huerta has expertise in hydraulic engineering, environmental fluid mechanics of multiphase flows, including air-water, water-sediment, and more recently, plastic-water flows; and hydraulic design of engineering structures. He has participated in many novel experimental modelling works and multiphase instrumentation developments, as well as numerical modelling of turbulent multiphase flows.

 

Dr. Jenniver Sehring
Dr. Jenniver Sehring is a Political Scientist, Senior Lecturer in Water Diplomacy at the Water Governance Department at IHE. Her research and teaching focus on water governance at local, national and transboundary level and on institutional arrangements as well as practices of water cooperation and diplomacy.

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Participants

Participants are expected to meet the following criteria:

  • be at an early stage of their career
  • work in the field of international relations, foreign affairs, diplomacy, conflict resolution, and cooperation – preferably in environment or water-related issues
  • have strong interest in learning more about water, and aspiration to apply the knowledge their current and future professional development
  • have strong command of English

Requirements of the Program

Selected participants of the Program will be expected to commit to spend approximately 4 hours per week to fulfil minimum requirements of the Program (the number of hours might slightly vary depending on the schedule for each month). For the in-person meetings in March and June, physical travel to the Netherlands is anticipated.

The monthly workload of about 16 hours includes the following mandatory activities:

  • Active participation two webinars per month (lectures, group works, discussions, presentations, and other activities)
  • Preparatory readings
  • Active participation in webinars and contribution to group work
  • Fulfilment of self-paced individual assignments

Upon successful completion of the Program, participants will be awarded certificates.

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Costs and scholarships

The Program fee is 1400 EUR. This does not include travel and accommodation costs for the face-to-face meetings in Delft.

Candidates from low- and middle-income countries who meet all of the eligibility criteria can apply for the full coverage of Program-related expenses, including the program fee and travel-related costs. Please check the following list to identify which countries are considered as eligible to apply for the coverage – https://www.oecd.org/dac/financing-sustainable-development/development-finance-standards/DAC-List-ODA-Recipients-for-reporting-2021-flows.pdf. Please check the information “Application for funding” below for more information.

Eligibility criteria

To be eligible to participate, applicants must:

  • be at an early stage of their career
  • work in the field of international relations, foreign affairs, diplomacy, conflict resolution, and cooperation – preferably in environment or water-related issues
  • have strong interest in learning more about water, and aspiration to apply the knowledge their current and future professional development
  • have strong command of English (ability to read and understand specific professional literature, and articulate thoughts clearly)

Application process

All interested candidates should apply with a motivation letter (max. 2 pages) and CV. The following questions should be adequately addressed in the motivation letter:

  • Why are you interested in this program?
  • How is your current position related to transboundary water (or the environment)?
  • Will you be able to fulfil all the requirements of the Program (see above)? If no or not sure, why?

Please send both documents before 30 September 2021 by e-mail to WaterDiplomacy_Project@un-ihe.org. Selected and non-selected candidates will be notified by mid-October 2021.

Application for funding

Candidates applying for the program and coverage of expenses need to submit

  1. CV
  2. Motivation letter (max. 2 pages) addressing the following questions:
  3. a. Why are you interested in this program?

    b. How is your current position related to transboundary water (or the environment)?

    c. Will you be able to fulfil all the requirements of the Program (see above)? If no or not sure, why?

    d. How are you going to apply the knowledge obtained during the Program in your current and/or future professional life?

  4. One reference letter
  5. Confirmation of consent from a job supervisor about the employee’s availability for participation in the full Program, indicating the following preliminary estimates:
  • 16 hours of monthly workload, including preparatory reading, lectures, group works and work on individual assignments
  • Travel to the Netherlands in March 2022 (exact dates to be confirmed at a later stage) for 3 days, excluding the time needed for travel
  • Travel to the Netherlands in June 2022 (exact dates to be confirmed at a later stage) for 2 days, excluding the time needed for travel.

Applicants should send this before 30 September 2021 by e-mail to . Please indicate clearly in your email that you are applying for admission and funding.

Background information

The Young Water Diplomats Training Program is offered as part of DUPC2 Water Diplomacy Project funded by the Ministry of the Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands. The IHE Delft Water Diplomacy Programme in the framework of DUPC2 aims to contribute to the establishment and advancement of joint water governance arrangements. 

The goal is to realize equitable and sustainable outcomes through activities in the fields of knowledge sharing & science-policy dialogue, advancement of educational excellence, research & knowledge production, strengthening of educational institutions in the Global South, as well as basin-specific trainings and dialogues. For more information visit https://www.capacityforwaterdiplomacy.org/.

IHE Delft Institute for Water Education is the largest international graduate water education facility in the world with the mandate in the following three activities – education, research and innovation, and institutional strengthening. IHE Delft offers tailored, high-quality education and research in Delft and overseas, through strong partnerships within the Netherlands and with other international partners, especially in the Global South.

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Contacts

For content-related questions on the Program you can contact Jenniver Sehring via e-mail j.sehring@un-ihe.org. For application procedure and organizational issues contact Bota Sharipova via e-mail b.sharipova@un-ihe.org.

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