CPUT and the University of the Western Cape (UWC) will play a central role in research and training for Integrated Water Resource Management in South Africa.
With funding of 1.5 million Euros from Nuffic, a Netherlands initiative for capacity development in higher education, the institutions will work jointly on a water research and training project that will span over the next four years. The announcement of the project, which took place at the Bellville Campus on 28 July 2010, was attended by delegates from government, Nuffic and the Netherlands Embassy in Pretoria.
Addressing delegates, Prof Lagardien, Director of the Centre of Water and Sanitation Research at CPUT and project leader said: “IWRM will become increasingly important in order to cope with the challenges of the water sector in South Africa.” These challenges cover the entire water use cycle and range from inadequate planning for bulk water infrastructure to poor community participation in water planning and delivery.
Prof Lagardien, said: “This project will give practitioners a new set of IWRM skills required by the labour market and increase their career opportunities. In addition, it will help consolidate IWRM expertise focusing on equitable, efficient, effective and sustainable management of water resources, through CPUT and UWC.” The project also supports the National Water Resources Strategy which calls for complimentary strategies in building capacity and expertise among practitioners in the water sector.
The project will identify niche areas and develop related IWRM training programmes at both institutions. It will also establish four IWRM related Niche. Areas with appropriate research and training agendas and infuse cross-cutting themes related to gender and institutional learning.UWC Dean of Natural Sciences Prof Jan van Bever Donker said they are looking forward to working on the project with CPUT.
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