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Water Scarcity as Potential Cause of Global Conflict – <br/>Time for UN Green Helmets or a New EU Water Strategy?


The suggested study aims to examine the relationship between water scarcity and armed conflict, and to develop legal and policy recommendations for the UN and the EU to counteract water scarcity as a potential driving force of armed conflict.

Firstly, the study will identify to what extent greater water scarcity as a result of climate change constitutes a threat to peace and security. By analysing empirical data, and by conducting three case studies, the study will answer the question of how best to re-conceptualize the general connection between both water scarcity and armed conflict.

Secondly, the study will address the question of how the UN should best tackle this connection. Suggestions within the UN system include the involvement of the Security Council, the appointment of a UN Special Rapporteur on the issue of climate change and international security, and the reform of existing international processes in the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) as the key actor to negotiate climate change targets.

Thirdly, the study will evaluate which policy the EU, with its tradition of promoting peaceful co-operation amongst nations, should develop on the issue of water scarcity and armed conflict in its external relations, in particular how should it reshape structures and processes for future negotiations with EU candidate countries, such as Turkey, which have significant disputes over water with their non-European neighbours (e.g. Syria and Iraq)?

Adressing the topics of climate change and armed conflict through a multi-disciplinary lense, the project, and its underlying topic, is of significant societal and academic relevance, and at the same time of utmost importance for the maintenance of international peace through the UN and the EU.

Call for proposal

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Universitaetsstrasse 150
44801 Bochum

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Nordrhein-Westfalen Arnsberg Bochum, Kreisfreie Stadt
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Administrative Contact
Theresa Stollmann (Ms.)
EU contribution
No data