Professionals from ten Mediterranean countries gathered in one of the most attractive locations in Montenegro, Budva, to participate in a regional training course on “GIS theory and applications on Urban Waste Water Management” on 21-23 May, 2012, organized by the EU funded H2020 CB/MEP.
The main objective of this capacity building activity was to introduce participants to GIS (Geographic Information Systems) and remote sensing techniques with particular emphasis on wastewater management and operation. The 22 participants were all water managers and decision-makers from water authorities, ministries, industries, NGOs and other competent bodies as well as relevant university staff from Albania, Algeria, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Croatia, Egypt, Israel, Montenegro, Morocco, the occupied Palestinian territory, Tunisia, and Turkey.
The course captured the participants’ undivided attention and was successful in conveying the fundamental principles of the GIS and remote sensing technologies, the principles underlying the GIS/model-based management of wastewater systems and the necessary background into the GIS-based analytical and problem-solving techniques for sustainable planning and management of wastewater systems. The role of the technology in supporting the decision making process was also highlighted.
Following an initial introductory lecture, the course unfolded through exercises and software demonstration, as the underlying principle of the course was “learning by doing”. The students acquired hands-on experience in data structures, map projections and coordinate systems, processing of digital geographic information, creation of digital elevation models, visualisation, mapping of water and environmental features, streams and aquifer delineation, digitisation, soil and land use mapping, terrain analysis for hydrological and hydraulic modeling, presentation of modeling results, etc. A very interesting case study from Bosnia Herzegovina’s wastewater infrastructure was also presented in cooperation with one of the participants with active involvement in the study.
Mr. Abdelkrim Elghazouani of Morocco commented “The training in ArcGIS and its many applications can be very beneficial in the environmental field. The quality of the organization, together with the high level of experts, have made the training in Budva a great success”.
The workshop was organized within the framework of the ENPI Horizon 2020 Capacity Building/ Mediterranean Environment Programme by the UNESCO-IHE Institute for Water Education (Delft).