MOOC International Water Law

Information

4,5 Distance teaching hours
About 10 hours to complete MOOC

Language

English

Format

Distance learning

Registration

Continuous

Contribution to the SDGs

Goal 1: End poverty in all its forms everywhere Goal 2: End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture Goal 4: Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all Goal 6: Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all Goal 7: Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all Goal 10: Reduce inequality within and among countries Goal 13: Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts Goal 14: Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development Goal 16: Promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development

Programme

In recent decades, international law has undergone a series of major developments in order to accommodate the many new facets of freshwater management and protection. The adoption of universal, regional and basin instruments highlights how important it is to study the evolution of international water regulations and to be able to identify the main principles in this field. This course aims to provide the necessary background to understand and examine the regulation applicable to transboundary freshwaters especially to rivers, lakes and aquifers. It presents the principles and legal standards that govern the use, sharing, management and protection of these resources.

Coordinator(s)

Komlan SANGBANA, Université de Genève

Description

With around two hundred and seventy-six (276) rivers and lakes and a large number of groundwater shared by two or more States, there is an increasing level of interest in the importance of international law in this area. This introductory module is designed to highlight how international regulation is fundamental to achieving a harmonious and peaceful management of these essential resources. It outlines the various issues and challenges related to the management and protection of water resources. Whilst emphasis is placed on the factors that can lead to conflict, the module will also show how water can be considered as an instrument of peace and cooperation among States. Within this context, the benefits of cooperation between States over transboundary freshwater are examined. We will also analyse the different uses linked to water resources and the relationships that exist between them. The module will be concluded by a quiz worth 15% of the final mark. You must have at least 80% of the answers correct to pass the module.

Planning

  • 10 videos
  • 2 readings
  • 2 quiz

Description

This module outlines the major milestones in the evolution of international freshwater regulation. It will present the scope and contribution of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Non-Navigational Uses of International Watercourses (1997 Convention) and the Convention on the Protection and Use of Transboundary Water and International Lakes of the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) (1992 Convention). The role of international organizations, international academic societies and civil society in the development and promotion of these instruments will be highlighted. The unique nature of groundwater regulation is also addressed and we will look closely at the main features of the 2008 International Law Commission’s Draft articles on the Law of Transboundary Aquifers. We will also examine the best practice shown in the 2008 Convention on the Protection, Utilisation, Recharge and Monitoring of the Franco-Swiss Genevois Aquifer. The module will be concluded by a quiz worth 20% of the final mark. You must have at least 80% of the answers correct to pass the module.

Planning

  • 10 videos
  • 2 quiz

Description

This module presents the general principles governing how water is shared and we will also examine the rules associated with planned measures on transboundary waters. We will take a look at the theory behind the principle of equitable and reasonable use, the obligation to not cause significant harm and the principle of cooperation. The rules of notification, consultation and negotiation in the case of planned measures will be examined in detail. We will also focus how these principles interact with each other. The module will be concluded by a quiz worth 25% of the final mark. You must have at least 80% of the answers correct to pass the module.

Planning

  • 9 videos
  • 1 quiz

Description

This module highlights how other bodies of norms such as international environmental law, human rights and the law of climate change have contributed to the protection of transboundary freshwaters. The module presents the main international conventions that deal with the environment and details the principles that apply to the management of shared water resources (such as prevention, precaution and the obligation to conduct an environmental impact study). We will examine new legal instruments that take into account these aspects of international freshwater law via the water charters (such as for the Senegal River, the Niger River Basin, the Lake Chad Basin). The module will be concluded by a quiz worth 25% of the final mark. You must have at least 80% of the answers correct to pass the module.

Planning

  • 8 videos
  • 1 quiz

Description

This module presents the diplomatic and judicial mechanisms that exist for resolving water-related disputes. The essential role of basin organizations and commissions in the prevention and resolution of conflicts over water is also addressed. Finally, we examine the details of the decisions of international tribunals and courts about shared water resources and we assess their contribution to the development of international freshwater law. The module will be concluded by a quiz worth 20% of the final mark. You must have at least 80% of the answers correct to pass the module.

Planning

  • 7 videos
  • 1 quiz

Since 2013, the University has been producing "massive open online courses" (MOOCs). These are university-level online courses that are scripted and structured around content, learning activities, interactions and assessments. They are open to everybody, without access-restrictions based on age, profession or level of study.

This initiative aims to make courses from the best universities in the world available to everybody, with monitoring and assessment requirements as high as for regular students. Launched in 2011 by computer science professors at Stanford University, MOOCs now have several hundred million students worldwide. The universities involved in this process include some of the world's most prestigious institutions.

The University of Geneva's MOOCs are offered on the Coursera platform.

Contribution to the SDGs

Goal 1: End poverty in all its forms everywhere Goal 2: End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture Goal 4: Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all Goal 6: Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all Goal 7: Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all Goal 10: Reduce inequality within and among countries Goal 13: Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts Goal 14: Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development Goal 16: Promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development