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Monash University

Monash University Handbook 2011 Postgraduate - Unit

6 points, SCA Band 2, 0.125 EFTSL

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.

FacultyFaculty of Arts
OfferedSouth Africa First semester 2011 (Day)
Coordinator(s)Dr Bruce Missingham, Nathanial Matthews (International WaterCentre) and Dr Rebekah Brown (Monash Australia)


Previously coded WTR4003


This unit examines the elements and background to the so-called world water crisis and analyses current international development thinking about sustainable development and its application to water and water resources. It explores dimensions such as livelihoods and poverty, water supply and sanitation in cities, gender, community participation and water as a human right. This will be done in context of organisations such as Catchment Management Agencies and relevant Provincial Departments who face challenges with water sustainability and development. Students will be able to work directly with key individuals in these organisations and get a firsthand experience of some of the issues and challenges they face. Topics covered by the unit include;

  • Water and Sustainable Development: theory and principles
  • Water, Development, Poverty and Livelihoods
  • Water and Community Participation
  • Water supply, sanitation and health
  • Dams and irrigation
  • Water and Gender


Specific objectives for this unit include:

  1. Critically examine the theoretical underpinnings and key principles of sustainable development and explain its application to water resources
  2. Identify the key aspects and causes of the 'global water crisis', and its implications for development
  3. Employ a range of analytical frameworks for understanding the links between water, livelihoods, poverty, and gender
  4. Explain the theoretical and practical justifications for community participation in water resources development, using examples and case studies
  5. Explain and have a critical appreciation of the implications of a human rights approach to water resources development.


Interactive workshops on key topics
Individual participation and presentation: 30%
Case study - water supply and sanitation / water-sensitive cities
Group assignment (6000 words): 70%

Contact hours

1 week lectures(5-6 hours of lectures/seminars per day)
1 week reading, case studies, self study, tutorial, short course, guest lecturer, discussions


APG4823, APG4824 and APG4826