SDC-22806 Land and Water Politics


Credits 6.00

Teaching methodContact hours
Individual Paper0
Independent study0
Course coordinator(s)dr. ML Schneider
Lecturer(s)dr. ML Schneider
dr. D Roth
Examiner(s)dr. D Roth

Language of instruction:



Interventions in land and water are often treated as technical challenges or routines that change the use, management and governance of these resources in ways desired and designed by policy-makers and planners. Such assumptions, however, are untenable in the light of experiences with such interventions worldwide. This course teaches students to understand, reflect on and apply relevant theoretical and conceptual approaches from the social sciences to analyse interventions in land and water in a variety of geographical, hydro-social and other contexts. The point of departure of the course is the fundamentally contested and political character of such interventions, involving claims, negotiations and contestations around process and outcome of decision-making on land and water.

Learning outcomes:

After successful completion of this course students are expected to be able to:
- retrieve key social-scientific theories, concepts and methodologies relevant to land and water governance, management and politics;
- explain, interpret, relate and compare these theories and concepts, and apply them in scientific analysis and writing;
- critically appraise and assess policies and practices of managing and governing land and water from a social-scientific perspective;
- apply theoretical-conceptual insights and approaches to the designing, structuring and writing of a paper of appropriate (scientific) standard on a land and/or water topic of the students’ own choice; 
- apply the writing skills developed in tutorials and assignments to the writing of the paper.


This course combines lectures, the study of scientific literature and tutorials with various individual writing assignments, group work (peer reviews; group discussions), and individual paper writing.


- written (or computer-based) exam on course literature and lectures (closed book) (40%);
- final individual scientific paper (40%);
- individual writing and peer review assignments (20%).

Each of both components require a minimum of 5.5 to pass, and sufficient participation in group work is mandatory.


On Brightspace (PDF or URL)

Compulsory for: BILInternational Land and Water ManagementBSc5AF
Restricted Optional for: WUDIRBSc Minor Disaster Risk and Resilience5AF