International Network on Sustainable Water Management in Developing Countries (SWINDON) – Middle East and North Africa (MENA) Region Summer School 2016

Water Management for Coastal Communities Summer School was held in Cevahir Istanbul Asia Hotel between 2-8 October 2016. The opening speeches were moderated by Assoc. Prof. Dr. Ahmet Baban, chief senior researcher at TUBİTAK Marmara Research Center (MRC) Environment and Cleaner Production Institute (ECPI).  The opening  speech was given by the deputy president of the TUBİTAK MRC Prof. Dr. Murat Makaracı.

In his talk, after welcoming guests from all around the World,  Dr. Makaracı highlighted that “there are three critical factors for an independent nation as (1) wheat for eating; (2) water for drinking and (3) petroleum and products for energy.  United Nations declared transformation of the World by 2030 via 17 steps, firstly tackle with No Poverty, then Zero Hunger and Good Health and as a sixth one being Clean Water and Sanitation. Today, almost 1 billion of the world population lacks clean drinking water which imposes UN to take actions for equal and just world…therefore water management becomes important” .Dr. Selma Ayaz, deputy director of TUBİTAK MRC ECPI, presented the ECPI activities. Prof. Dr. Andreas Haarstrick from the Braunschweig University introduced the exceed-SWINDON Project and presented global water challenges. Finally, Prof. Dr. Bulent Topkaya from the Akdeniz University summarized water management in the MENA Region.

The SWINDON is a sub-project coordinated within the Excellence Centers for Exchange and Development (exceed) of the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD). The SWINDON project network consists of 29 full member institutions in 15 countries from Latin America, Middle East-North Africa, Sub-Saharan Africa and South East Asia regions. The project aims to develop sustainable projects and water recycling technologies towards each region’s water-related problems. The project subjects range from reducing water use in agriculture, water management for large cities – metropolises, aquatic ecosystems and coastal engineering, the global dimension of water, droughts and floods, and water quality. The project involves the exchange of researchers, summer schools, regional and international workshops, seminars and other networking activities.

The summer school was funded by DAAD and coordinated by Braunschweig University and TUBİTAK MRC ECPI. Water and wastewater engineers and experts, M.S. and Ph.D. students, post doctoral students, senior research scientists with an environmental science background from the MENA Region and, in addition, Brazil, Vietnam, Ethiopia and Nigeria attended to the summer school. National and international experts from universities and research organizations gave a series of lectures in addition to student presentations. Topics presented at the Summer School included environmental impacts of climate change, domestic wastewater treatment/reuse alternatives, water and wastewater management for coastal zones, catchment based water/wastewater management studies and water reuse. Field trips to Pasakoy Advanced Biological Wastewater Treatment Plant and Gebze Balcik Natural Wastewater Treatment Plant were held. A case study on coastal waters was studied in groups and each group presented their management scenarios at the end of the summer school. 


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