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Environment and Sustainable Development in the Middle East - SIMS53

7.5 credits, Autumn 2021

The course covers the environmental impact of natural resource management and its political, social, and economic dimensions. The main objective is to understand land and water management and their environmental impacts in the Middle East through a holistic and sustainable perspective. The nexus between water, food, and energy in the Middle East is discussed within the major river basins in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region.


Course content

Four important areas for Middle East development are touched upon in the course. The first involves the management of water and land in light of increasing population size and a changing climate.  For this, the actors that influence water and land management are analyzed. The second introduces the student to techniques for spatial planning and management of transboundary waters. In this part different traditional and improved water management systems are also introduced. In the third part, conflict or cooperation are looked at from a management perspective and their influence on the environment within the major river basins and beyond. The last part covers the political aspects and threats to natural resource use within the river basins in the MENA region. 

Through individualized course work, the student should be able to critically examine the environment and sustainable development connected problems related to the natural resources, political situation, social aspects, and economic situation. The student will acquire knowledge to evaluate water and land resource management alternatives in view of environmental effects. The course work will also prepare the student for applying this knowledge in a variety of different professional contexts; as policymakers, trainers or practitioners, in government agencies, private firms, or NGOs.

Online course platform

This course uses Canvas as the online course platform. The course platform will be opened one week before the course begins to all students who were accepted. Here you will be able to access literature, assignments, announcements, as well as participate in discussions and communicate with teachers. 


The course schedule can be found under the course information on the right. Please note that the final version of the schedule will be made available four weeks before the course begins, and changes may occur until that point. A more detailed schedule will be available on the course platform on Canvas.

About the course

Course Period:
2021-12-01 to 2022-01-16

Course schedule:
List view | Calendar view

Course syllabus

Course literature

Course guide