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The SGSP-IWRM aims at contributing to the development of regional capacity by implementing inter/multi/trans - disciplinary research, education, and training programme within the identified priorities at SADC, SASSCAL and national levels.

A representative list of broad research priority areas that will be translated into PhD topics and projects is provided below.


Water and Wastewater Systems and Technology
  • Water conservation and optimisation approached in water abstraction and utilisation.
  • Water systems engineering including irrigation, supply, storage, sanitation and wastewater treatment/recycling, water harvesting technologies, water for energy.
  • Development and deployment of Information and Communications Technology Applications (e.g., role of artificial intelligence) in the IWRM sector, including tools for the general public.
Hydrology and Geohydrology
  • Basic and advanced hydrology including analysis of environmental flows.
  • Integrated surface water-groundwater interactions/modelling.
  • Geohydrological, chemical, and biological process analysis.
  • Hydrological/hydrogeological modelling and forecasting/ simulations.
Water Security under Climate and environmental changes
  • Ecological assessment of water systems, modelling, multi-criteria statistical analysis.
  • Effectiveness of environmental and social impact assessment processes, including sanitation/wastewater management models (including smart/green technologies/cities concepts).
  • Socio-economic dynamics implications on water security/ resilience at local, national, and/or regional levels.
  • Transboundary Water Systems.
Sustainable Water, Energy and Food Security (WEF Nexus)
  • Modelling, analysis of water, and energy food nexus approaches.
  • Risk assessments and decision support systems for WEF nexus.
  • Investigation/analysis of agricultural and other land uses on water availability and supply, including water efficient food production systems.


The objective of the SGSP – IWRM is the development and deployment of an innovative and excellent regional collaborative education and research programme at PhD degree level complemented by selected tailor-made short courses for decision makers and industry, as well as a curriculum for a new regional PhD qualification in IWRM.