Programme  OS8a Capacity building  abstract 588

Capacity Development in IWRM through E-learning – Experiences of Water Virtual Learning Centre at AIT, Thailand

Author(s): Mukand S. Babel, Velma I. Grover, Devesh Sharma, Shahriar Md. Wahid
Mukand S. Babel, Devesh Sharma Water Engineering and Management Program, Asian Institute of Technology, P.O. Box 4, Khlong Luang, Pathumthani 12120, Thailand Tel. +662 524 5790, Fax. +662 524 6425, Email. Velma I. Grover United Nat

Keyword(s): Integrated water resource management, capacity development, e- learning, water professional

Article: abs588_article.pdf
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Session: OS8a Capacity building
AbstractThe targets of developing Integrated Water Resource Management (IWRM) plan

and Water Efficiency (WE) plan by 2005 could not be realized in most developing countries due to a number of

institutional barriers related to sustainable water management, including the lack of trained human resources,

applicable best practices and experiences. To address the need of capacity building in IWRM of current generation

of water managers, e-learning is considered to be a viable and effective method wherein participants can acquire

required knowledge and skills without being away from their routine work for a long period to an academic

institution. This paper presents initial experiences gained on the distance-based IWRM program offered by the

Regional UN-Water Virtual Learning Centre (WVLC) at the Asian Institute of Technology (AIT), Thailand.

Objectives and approach, curriculum and courses and their customization and specific features of the program are

presented. Based on the lesson learned during the initial implementation of the program and the feedback received

from the participants, the paper further discusses issues and constraints for the sustainability of the program. A

combination of face-to-face and distance-based learning as experimented has been found to be most effective way

of delivering the program. Participants opine that the program is very useful and informational learning experience

gained has helped them improving their knowledge and skills necessary to understand and apply IWRM concepts

and principles in planning and implementation of water resources management programs and projects in their

respective countries. There is a strong interest and enthusiasm among water and related professionals towards the

program. There, however remains a major constraint of lack of commitment from the governments and other

stakeholders in preparing their staff for adopting IWRM for sustainable development. Lesson learned can be useful

for further improvements in the program at WVLC at AIT as well as for education and training in IWRM of water

professionals in other parts of the World.

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