The UCL Water Group is a platform for knowledge sharing in water research among graduate students and academics.
We are thrilled to invite you to the Welcome Seminar of the UCL Water Group featuring Dr Sarah Bell from UCL and Dr Geoff Goodwin from LSE. This will be a great opportunity to meet people who are interested in water research across UCL and spearheading research on the most current water related issues.
As refreshments will be provided, please RSVP by Friday 7th October. We look forward to seeing you there!
UCL Water Group Committee
Abstracts and biographies of speakers:
Dr Sarah Bell: Engaging households in designing water-energy-food infrastructure
The nexus between water-energy-food demonstrates interdependencies between resources and their environmental impacts. This is usually analysed from a supply-side perspective, addressing the production of water, energy and food. The Engineering Comes Home project looks at the nexus from the point of view of households and neighbourhoods. The purpose of the project is to work with local communities to design new technologies and infrastructure that can meet their needs for nexus services with lower resource demand and environmental impact. The project is funded by the EPSRC and is a collaboration between UCL, the University of Newcastle, iilab, and the residents of the Meakin Estate. This seminar will outline the purpose, aims and methods of the project, and will present initial findings from an ethnographic study of everyday resource using practices and how these will be used in designing alternative nexus infrastructure.
Sarah Bell is Director of the Engineering Exchange and Senior Lecturer in environmental engineering at UCL. Her research investigates the sustainability of urban water systems, particularly social and policy factors as they relate to engineering. Her work also addresses community engagement with engineering and infrastructure provision. She has supervised research in Australia, the UK, Mexico, Iran, Kenya and Peru, and works in collaboration with engineering, community and policy partners. She is an EPSRC Living With Environmental Change Research Fellow.
Dr Geoff Goodwin: Water No Get Enemy? The Political Economy of Water in Ecuador under Rafael Correa
Over the last decade Ecuador has witnessed an intense struggle over the design and implementation of a new water regime. The efforts of the Rafael Correa administration to establish a new legal and institutional framework that regulates the use, control and distribution of water have been strongly contested by community water organisations and indigenous and peasant movements. The conflict is curious at first glance as the government has seemingly responded to two of the principal demands of the actors involved in contesting the new regime: proscribe the privatisation of water and increase public control of the resource. What explains this apparent incongruity? In this talk, I will offer some preliminary answers to this question, focusing on the complex and varied relationship between community water organisations, local governments and state agencies and placing the struggle within wider political and economic context. The talk will draw on fieldwork undertaken in the highland region of Ecuador in 2015 and 2016 and earlier preliminary investigations.
Geoff Goodwin is a Fellow in International Development at the London School of Economics and Political Science and was previously a Teaching Fellow in Latin American Economics at University College London and a Research Associate at FLACSO-Quito. He holds a PhD in Political Economy from University College London and a MA in Economics from the University of Leeds. His research interests include land reform, water management, extractive industries, agrarian change and social movements.
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