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Water Resources Management

This specialization consists of 14 modules covering a total of 12 months, this is followed by a

6-month research and thesis phase. Graduates of the programme will be awarded 106
ECTS (European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System) credits.
October - September
UNESCO-IHE, Delft, The Netherlands
o Principles of Integrated Water Resources Management Required
Learning Objectives
1. Summarize the latest insights, context and concepts in integrated
water management that are under debate in international and regional
2. Explain the main arguments for an integrated approach in the field of
water management.
3. Describe the major natural functions and human uses of river
4. Summarize the basics of GIS and Remote Sensing, and apply the
techniques for typical applications in water management.
5. Explain what science is and what scientific research entails including
distinguishing the main methodological approaches.
o The Water Resources System Required
1. Describe how the physical water resources system works, and
illustrate the interaction between quantity and quality (chemical,
biological, ecological), between surface water, soil water and
groundwater, between stocks and fluxes. Explain major natural
functions and human use of water resources systems focusing on
river systems including groundwater, wetlands, lakes/reservoirs and
2. Identify basic components to characterise the quantitative and
qualitative nature of a water resources system and able to analyse the
hydrology of a water resources systems.
3. Discuss the main issues of debate in an integrated water resources
system underpinned by description of the biophysical, chemical and
hydrological processes and their interactions, natural functions and
human use of a water resources system.
o Water Governance Required
1. Identify and analyse actors and decision making processes related to
water governance
2. Distinguish and explain main discourses and theories on water
3. Identify context, purpose, perspective and arguments of scientific
papers on water governance
4. Compare and contrast different scientific papers, case studies and
theories on dynamic and political nature of water governance
o Water Economics Required
1. Explain the cause of water resource issues and the relevance of
2. Describe the principle of economic method to manage water
3. Identify economic instruments for water resource management
4. Describe economic approaches to estimating the value of water in
different use
5. Apply economic theory and method to analyze issues of water
resource management
o Water Resources Assessment Required
1. Describe different types of water resources data, generated from
ground and RS measurements.
2. Apply diverse methods of data processing and data validation for
water resources assessment.
3. Quantify the different components of the water resources spectrum
(rainfall, river flow, groundwater), an assess availability and access at
different scales.
4. Describe and apply different methods of water quality monitoring and
5. Analyse and quantify multiples uses of water for: agriculture,
hydropower, domestic, environment and other uses
6. Apply water accounting techniques as a quick method for assessing
water resources, water use, and water productivity in a river basin
o Water Systems Modelling Required
1. Describe the procedure of the modelling protocol.
2. Name and explain type of models used in different case studies.
3. Build water resources models that simulate river basin processes.
4. Clearly present the results of the water system models.
5. Critically analyse model outcomes.
o Water Resources Planning Required
1. Distinguish the spatiotemporal scales and river basin development
phases in a water resources planning process.
2. Describe major steps in the participatory and integrated water
resources planning process.
3. Identify and apply planning tools, such as stakeholder integration,
methods for environmental impact assessment and decision support
systems, while engaging in water resources planning activities.
4. Develop alternative water management strategies.
5. Evaluate alternative water management strategies by applying multi-
criteria analysis.
6. Formulate and evaluate integrated water resources plans in a
participatory context.
o Water and Environmental Law Required
1. Describe the fundamentals of national and international water and
environmental law and legislation.
2. Explain and apply accepted and desired legal and institutional
arrangements for applying principles of Integrated Water Resources
and Environmental Management.
3. Describe and apply legal instruments for the application of IWRM with
the emphasis on functional decentralization, river basin organizations,
planning and decision-making through water allocation criteria,
systems of water rights, water (effluent) permit systems etc.
4. Explain and appraise concepts of customary water rights.
5. Discuss the processes of international water allocation.
6. Explain the concept of multi-level governance and the relationship
between national and international legal and policy systems and to be
able to persuasively argue a case for international water conflict
o International Fieldwork Required
1. Compare the different water management perspectives and uses in
practice in Spain and Portugal. Issues that will be elaborated upon
during the fieldwork include Multiple uses for and multiple sources of
water; Up and downstream water issues; Institutional framework and
implementation of the EU WFD; Public and private water supply;
Conventional and alternative waste water treatment and reuse; Large
Dams and transboundary river basin issues; Ancient vs modern
irrigation and water supply systems; Non conventional water
resources: desalination and wastewater reuse; Formal and informal
decision making processes.
2. Formulate a problem statement
3. Collect and analyse data from field measurements and interviews
4. Develop a problem analysis
o IWRM Groupwork Required
1. Develop a final problem analysis on specific problems of water
management in the Andarax Basin.
2. Design approaches for mitigating the specific problems in the Andarax
3. Evaluate the different approaches and argue for a preferred approach
to mitigate identified problems.
4. Integrate different approaches (targeted at different themes/problems)
into an integrated water management plan.
5. Present and argue for the integrated water management plan.
o Summer Courses for WM