30 November 2018
On 20-22 November 2018, a Regional Training Workshop on Water Cooperation in Central Asia was jointly organized by the UNESCO Offices in Tashkent and Almaty, the UNESCO International Hydrological Programme (IHP) and the Tashkent Institute of Irrigation and Agricultural Mechanization Engineers (TIIAME) in Tashkent, Uzbekistan. The workshop was also a kick-off activity of the newly established UNESCO Chair on Water Diplomacy, Water Resources Management and Environmental Protection at TIIAME.The 3-day workshop was attended by more than 40 participants, including representatives of ministries and governmental institutions in charge of water resources, ministries of foreign affairs, international organizations as well as young experts and students from all five Central Asian countries: Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. The workshop, conducted by eminent experts from Oregon State University (USA) and the University of Geneva (Switzerland), provided capacity building exercises on international water law, negotiations, alternative dispute resolution techniques and the water-energy-food nexus.
The programme of the workshop was mostly focused on interactive communication with the audience, as well as practical exercises, during which participants from different countries worked together in groups and jointly solved problems related to transboundary water management. This training allowed to improve the negotiation skills of Central Asian water specialists and decision-makers, as well as provided a platform for their interaction and networking.
The workshop was also an opportunity to promote and forge UNESCO’s Water Family collaborative research and sharing of good practices on water cooperation as it reunited three UNESCO Chairs: the newly established UNESCO Chair on Water Diplomacy, Water Resources Management and Environmental Protection at Tashkent Institute of Irrigation and Agricultural Mechanization Engineers, the UNESCO Chair on Water Resources Management at the German-Kazakh University in Almaty, Kazakhstan, and the UNESCO Chair in Hydropolitics at the University of Geneva in Switzerland. This collaboration will pave the way towards a longstanding cooperation for building capacity of the future generation of water policy-makers in Central Asia.
The event was organized in the framework of the UNESCO-IHP Project “Groundwater Resources Governance in Transboundary Aquifers” (GGRETA) supported by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation.