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Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin - IRI THESys

Themenklasse 2019/20

Deutschlandstipendium Scholarships on Sustainability & Global Justice

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Water Security

The academic year 2019/20 marks the seventh installation of the Deutschlandstipendium-Themenklasse "Sustainability and Global Justice," funded by the Stiftung Humboldt-Universität, as part of the interdisciplinary research at IRI THESys. Throughout the year, the 16 scholarship recipients, Master's and advanced Bachelor's students of a range of disciplines including geography, social and cultural anthropology, philosophy, law, economics, and agricultural sciences, will investigate wide-ranging topics on water security. Specifically, their research will focus on the topic of drought. The choice of research was inspired by the heatwave which hit Europe in the summer of 2018.

   In the next two semesters, the Themenklasse will investigate different aspects of the subject of drought and water (in)security. Core questions deal with issues of drought and social justice, drought and agriculture, drought and governance, and the limits of ecosystem resilience. The aim is to link up locally gathered findings with global developments. In this context, the students will also address the question of whether terms of water (in)security are even appropriate to describing the situation in Germany. Given that we live in a welfare state, is it justified for us to claim the notion/concept of water security? To what extent does Germany's water security burden other states, especially in the Global South? And what even is a concrete definition of 'waste of water'?

The scholarship recipients will investigate the topics in interdisciplinary subgroups using different kinds of methods (analytical, quantitative, qualitative, critical) and combine all their findings in one common final project, which will be designed to be accessible to a broad audience including beyond the academic community.