Recent decades have witnessed an increasing rate of urbanisation, particularly in developing regions and in countries in transition. About 80% of the world’s mega-cities can be found in these regions. During the next two decades the world’s population is expected to double.
The high concentration of people in urban areas will place enormous pressure on the local environment and on available resources. It will also generate ever-higher, sometimes conflicting demands on services such as water supply and sanitation.
At the same time, under decentralisation policies, the responsibility for delivering such services will be increasingly delegated to lower levels of government that are often ill equipped for this challenge in terms of financial and human resources.
Aim of the Programme
The International Masters Programme in Urban Water and Sanitation educates professionals in the fields of water supply, sanitation and water engineering and management, particularly in urban areas.
Once they have successfully completed this programme, graduates will be able to:
- Place their profession in the wider social, economic and environmental contexts of urbanisation and municipal water and infrastructure services provision.
- Act as a competent professional in their area of chosen specialization.
- Contribute to the development of innovative approaches to the provision of sustainable and equitable municipal water, sanitation, environmental and infrastructure services in developing and transition countries.
The programme is offered by the Department of Urban Water and Sanitation of UNESCO-IHE.
The programme is directed predominantly at civil and sanitary engineers working in water supply and waste-water companies, municipal assemblies, government ministries and consulting companies dealing with water supply, sanitation and municipal infrastructure.
Depending on their choice of specialization, participants should have a Bachelors or equivalent degree in civil engineering, sanitary engineering, chemical engineering, hydraulic engineering, environmental engineering or related fields. Prospective candidates would also benefit greatly from having had several years of experience as a professional engineer.
The Urban Water and Sanitation programme culminates in an MSc thesis. Research can take the form of experimental work, modelling, or case studies. It starts with a six-week period to develop an individual research proposal, combined with tuition in research methods and skills. The actual research takes place over a period of about six months.
Research topics preferably fit within the following research lines:
- River bank filtration, low-cost coagulants, optimising conventional treatment, membrane technology, and distribution-system water quality.
- Advanced nutrient removal, modeling wastewater treatment processes and plants, urine separation, ecological sanitation, advances in urban drainage and sewerage.
- Risk analysis of water distribution systems, asset management systems, integrated infrastructure design, and optimal design of urban drainage networks.
For information about admission requirements, fees, fellowships and more, visit the prospective students section.
Where possible, topics are selected with a direct relevance to the participant's own country and working environment. In such cases part of the research work (data collection in particular) is often carried out in the home country.
Specializations within the MSc Programme are: