42 young master and PhD students as well as junior university teachers and specialists from government agencies and research institutions participated into the two-week 4th CAWa Summer School “Methods and Tools for the Assessment and Monitoring of Central Asian Water and Land Resources” (June 5-17, 2017) that was hosted by the German-Kazakh University in Almaty, Kazakhstan. Participants came from Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan as well as from Afghanistan and Pakistan.
During the first week (June 5-8, 2017), trainers from the Department of Remote Sensing at the University of Würzburg (Lucia Morper-Busch and Dimo Dimov) together with two co-trainers from Uzbekistan (Sherzod Zaitov, SIC ICWC) and Kazakhstan (Almas Kitapbayev, DKU) trained the participants in the use of open-source GIS software (QGIS Desktop-2.18 with Orfeo Toolbox and several plugins) for spatial analyses and in the processing, analyses, and interpretation of satellite images (e.g., raster image analysis and land use classification). Furthermore, they provided an overview of remote sensing applications for water and land resource monitoring and introduced the participants into the online information tool WUEMoCA (Water Use Efficiency Monitor in Central Asia) that is developed at the Department of Remote Sensing in Würzburg together with Central Asian partners.
Participants and trainers in the 4th CAWa Summer School (module ‘Introduction to GIS and Remote Sensing’ in the first week of summer school) in front of the German-Kazakh University in Almaty, Kazakhstan.
This year’s CAWa Summer School was already the fourth in a row. It was organized by the CAWa Project (funded by the German Federal Foreign Office; http://www.cawa-project.net) and by the German-Kazakh University in Almaty (Kazakhstan) in cooperation with the Nazarbayev University (Department of Civil Engineering, School of Engineering) in Astana (Kazakhstan) and the Fribourg University (Physical Geography) in Fribourg (Switzerland). Focus was set on innovative methods and tools for the analysis and monitoring of water and land resources in Central Asia that are of great value in integrated water and land resource management. Therefore, theoretical lectures and practical exercises were combined with discussion sessions on the implementation of new methods and instruments for managing the water and land resources. The program included an in-depth introduction to GIS, an overview of remote sensing applications for water and land resource monitoring, an introduction to climatological data analysis, and an introduction to glaciology.
CAWa Summer School 2017
“Methods and Tools for the Assessment and Monitoring of Central Asian Water and Land Resources”
05 – 17 June, 2017
at the German-Kazakh University in Almaty, Kazakhstan
The CAWa Summer School addresses master and PhD students and junior university teachers and researchers from Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, and Afghanistan interested in innovative methods and tools for the analysis and monitoring of water and land resources in Central Asia. Theoretical lectures will comprise an in-depth introduction to geographical information systems (GIS), an overview on remote sensing applications for land and water resources monitoring, an introduction to climatological data analysis, and an introduction to glaciology. In practical exercises focusing on data analysis, the CAWa Summer School participants will use open source tools such as QGIS for spatial analysis, R for statistical analysis, and PCI Geomatica for satellite data processing.
For further details on dates, venues, organizers and funding as well as for further information on how to apply, please see the website of the CAWa project with linked circular and application form.
Name of position: 1 Research Associate – Local Representative of the Regional Research Network ‘Water in Central Asia’
Location of the position: Almaty, Kazakhstan
Deadline for applications: March 1, 2017
Employer: CAWa and German Kazakh University in Almaty
The regional research network ‘Water in Central Asia’ (CAWa) with project partners in Germany and Central Asia is looking for a highly self-motivated, independently working, communicative, and team-oriented fulltime (100%) research associate, starting from April 2017 until April 2018 with possibility for prolongation. Main tasks of the successful candidate lie in the active representation of the entire CAWa project in Central Asia with the periodic notification of findings and significant contribution to disseminating and presenting the project to decision makers and scientific and governmental organizations/institutions. Support in capacity building is also expected from the candidate. The successful candidate willconduct organizational, advisory, and scientific tasks in an international, ambitious and committed team. We offer to work in a strong international network with numerous organizations in research and practice. The successful candidate will need to be able to familiarize himself or herself fast with the project contents and processes, goals, methods, and findings. In case of mutual interest of the project partners and the successful candidate, a further career at the GKU is possible.
The CAWa project has started in June 2008 and has since then been funded as scientific-technical component of the German Water Initiative for Central Asia (“Berlin Process”) by the German Federal Foreign Office. Funding is continued for the third project phase (2015-2017). Overall goals for the third project phase of CAWa are: (i) informed decision making in the water and land management by data transparency, (ii) support of regional and trans-sectoral cooperation and communication, and (iii) strengthening of technical and methodological competences of researchers and specialists in water management organizations, at universities and governmental institutions. The international partners involved in the project are the Helmholtz Centre Potsdam, GFZ German Research Centre for Geosciences (Germany), the Department of Remote Sensing at the University of Wuerzburg (Germany), the German-Kazakh University and its UNESCO Chair on Water Management in Central Asia (Almaty, Kazakhstan), the SIC ICWC (Scientific Information Center of the Interstate Commission for Water Coordination of Central Asia, Tashkent, Uzbekistan), KRASS (Khorezm Rural Advisory Support Service, Urgench, Uzbekistan), CAREC (Regional Environmental Centre for Central Asia), Central-Asian Institute for Applied Geosciences (CAIAG), and the Central Asia’s Hydrometeorological (Hydromet) Services. Methods applied in the CAWa project focus on satellite-based earth observation in the context of water and land management. Particular focus lies on the utilization of optical remote sensing data for the monitoring of irrigated land use and yield estimation (WUEMoCA tool), snow cover and glacier are as well as on the use of geodetic information for monitoring lake’s and reservoir’s water levels and snow depths.
Requested fields of research and main tasks
- Active communication and design of implementation in cooperation with all project partners, including self-organized short research visits to the partner institutions, and organization of workshops and team meetings,
- Active representation of the CAWa project and all related work packages in Central Asia with the periodic notification and significant contribution to disseminating and presenting the project contents and processes, methods and goals of developed information tools (MODSNOW, WUEMoCA) to decision makers and scientific and governmental organizations and institutions at conferences and workshops,
- Communication and exchange of feedback and raised questions and challenges on the use of tools to the project partners in Germany and recommendations for improvement,
- Preparation of scientific project proposals and realization of own scientific research
- Development and implementation organization of Remote Sensing and GIS courses and teaching activities for water managers to imparting methods and supporting data processing for analyzing and visualizing geo-information,
- Active support in planning and realizing the annual CAWa Summer School with international participants from Central Asian countries and Afghanistan,
- Development of teaching materials with focus on earth observation (optical remote sensing, laser and radar altimetry) and GIS and support in teaching MSc and BSc students at the GKU in the context of the CAWa project,
- Support in supervision of MSc and BSc students at the GKU in the context of the project,
- Support in project cooperation with the German Cooperation GIZ in the field of transboundary water management in Central Asia.
Expected skills and competences
- High-quality graduation in Geography or related fields,
- Extended basic knowledge in Earth Observation and Geographic Information Systems and strong willingness to increase knowledge and expertise,
- Sound knowledge in geostatistical analyses and programming skills,
- Excellent English skills (both written and spoken) are mandatory, good Russian skills are advantageous,
- Advanced knowledge of the region and organizational structures are advantageous,
- Very good ability to represent the entire research team effectively internally and externally, including at conferences and meetings in the region,
- Professional and respectful behavior and attitude in a collaborative environment,
- Experience in international research, project management, and project coordination is advantageous,
- Experience in working in a team-oriented, international and collaborative environment,
- Teaching experiences are advantaegous.
The successful candidate will receive a position for 1 year with possibility for prolongation.Successful candidate will be placed at the German-Kazakh University (GKU) in Almaty, Kazakhstan,with access to office infrastructure. Salary dependent on qualifications and experience and according to local conditions.
Please submit your application (in English) including the reference number 2017/CAWa project representative and containing a cover letter, motivation letter (1 page maximum), curriculum vitae with list of publications (if present) and working/project history, copies of diplomas, certificates or references from employers, by email to Dr. Barbara Janusz-Pawletta (German-Kazakh University, email@example.com) until March 1, 2017.
For further information on the project, candidates are encouraged to consult the project’s website https://www.cawa-project.net.
Prof. Dr. Viktor A. Dukhovniy is the Director of the Scientific Information Center of the Interstate Commission on Water Coordination in Central Asia (SIC ICWC) in Tashkent (Uzbekistan). He is a noted expert and active water specialist in Central Asia with long experiences from his memberships and leads in water partnerships (Interstate Coordination of Water Commission, the International Fund for Aral Sea Saving, Global water Partnership of Central Asia and Caucasus, International Commission on Irrigation and Drainage in the World Water Council, and in the International Water Resources Association). He published more than 350 articles and 22 monographs and prepared 18 PhD students on the water management, advance irrigated agriculture, and perspective planning of water development. He worked in Central Asia, but also as consultant in India, Nicaragua, Syria, Yemen and other states. (http://amudaryabasin.net)
Within the framework of a CAWa/WP3 workshop in November 2016 hosted by the Department of Remote Sensing, Prof. Dr. Dukhovniy V.A. will give a public lecture for the geographical colloquium of the Institute of Geography and Geology at the University of Würzburg.
22 th November 2016
Viktor A. Dukhovniy, PhD, Director of SIC-ICWC (Tashkent, Uzbekistan)
“Water and Land Management in Central Asia – Present Situation and Future Perspective”
04:00 p.m. (16:00 Uhr) c.t., lecture hall HS222
Water and Land Management in Central Asia – Present Situation and Future Perspective
Its location in the semi-arid and arid climate zones is the major reason for the increased dependency of the economic sector, particularly agriculture in Central Asia (Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan) from the development of land and water use and the access to those resources. Concurrent analysis of demographic pressure and land/water availability underscores a strong geographical discrepancy between the distribution of land and water resources and the socio-economic conditions in many places. Subsequently, the different types of pressure cause a wide range of site-specific management of the land and water resources. As a result, indicators on the productivity of croplands and of water use vary extensively among the provinces in the Aral Sea Basin. However, the main priority of land/water use for all Central Asian countries is food security. During the last years Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan achieved this status by self-sufficiency, in Kazakhstan – by wheat exports and big financial and economic potential. On the contrary, the development in Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan is yet delayed. The perspectives are narrowly depending on the permanent growth of yields and accordingly the volume of all agrarian productions in the entire region. With regard to the high pressure on the resources, also site-specific solutions for improved land and water management are urgently required. Main directions of present land management comprise:
- Getting control of the land reclamation situation (combat salinity and water logging) by developing and supporting dense networks for drainage water (open, close, vertical, and combined drainage) and by using salt resistant crops;
- Pushing back desertification, at first by afforestation and improved land use planning;
- Spreading advanced technology in irrigation such as drip irrigation or irrigation by using plastic tubes and flumes (increase water use efficiency);
- Searching for optimal crop pattern including an improved selection of second crops.
Present water management in the region has an enormous potential for water saving and for the reduction and control of unproductive water losses. The scope to which water can be saved through proper management was demonstrated by the work of the Scientific Information Center of the Interstate Commission on Water Coordination (SIC-ICWC) in cooperation with the International Water Management Institute (IWMI) and the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) in the multiyear project on water management in the Fergana Valley. There, thanks to the implementation of 7 principles of Integrated Water Resource Management (IWRM), water delivery could be reduced by 20-25 % without losses of yields. The outcome of 130,000 ha of cropland could be increased by 25-30 %. Another big potential for such success stories can be seen in the simultaneous establishment of land consulting services and Water User Associations (WUAs). The water accounting, especially implementation of the SCADA (Supervisory Control and Data Gathering) system plays a prominent and important role in the context of IWRM and agricultural extension services plays. Despite these potential advances of resource use on the local and landscape scales, the first priority in water management in Central Asia consists in a permanent attention and in a development of a mutual system for interstate management on the base of improved transboundary water performance.