1st Winter School at the Faculty of Society and Economics: Inclusive Water Management in Southern Africa for Improving Gender Equality and Reducing Poverty & Vulnerability

Last March 13-17, the five-day winter school on “Inclusive Water Management in Southern Africa for Improving Gender Equality and Reducing Poverty & Vulnerabil” was held for the first time. The winter school simulates a situation in which the participating students belong to a team of experts in the fields of gender and poverty that has accepted the invitation to come to Eswatini for a one-week visit in order to advice on how to make water management in Eswatini more inclusive in relation to gender and poverty & vulnerability. During the visit there are two key players in the field of water management in Eswatini that are available to discuss the development of water management, and gender and poverty & vulnerability issues in Eswatini with the team of experts. In addition, the key players are also stand-by for field trips to offer the experts the opportunity to get their own impressions and gain their own experiences.

In the course of the visit, the experts present their ideas and advice, and the two key players respond to the quality and applicability of these ideas and advice. The professionals from outside rhine-waal university of applied sciences are not just there for the benefit of the participating students, the intention is that the ideas and advice that the students come up with will also help them on their way towards more inclusive water management.

People involved

The people mentioned underneath are from outside Rhine Waal University of Applied Science and were around all week to contribute to the winter school:

  • Ms Sindy Mthimkhulu, CEO of the JRBA-PB, the joint operational organisation of the River Basin Authorities in Eswatini
  • Mr Musa Masilela, member of the executive management of ESWADE, the Eswatini Water and Agricultural Development Enterprise
  • Ms Sarah Pelham, independent gender expert from the UK and involved in the gender mainstreaming of the JRBA-PB.

In addition, students participated in this first edition of the winter school, twelve from Rhine Waal and one from TH Köln. The winter school was developed on the initiative of Professors Jan van der Molen and Eva Maria Hinterhuber, who were also there.

A Win-Win Situation

The informal cooperation between the organizations from Eswatini and Rhine Waal University of Applied Science is a good example of a win-win situation. The organizations from Eswatini contribute to the winter school and also offer Rhine Waal students the opportunity to do their graduation research in Eswatini. In turn, Jan van der Molen and Eva Maria Hinterhuber support the two organisations in making water management in Eswatini inclusive. In recent years, research lines for Gender and Poverty have been developed, various HSRW students have carried out their graduation research in Eswatini and a multi-day Gender Mainstreaming workshop has been given in Eswatini, which has led to a recently released Gender guideline. The cooperation is planned for the long term, so far with Jan van der Molen as the spider in the web of the collaboration, in the future with a stronger involvement of Eva Maria Hinterhuber.