Summer School Water Resources Management in Karst Regions in Vietnam from 24th to 26th October 2019

For many years, there has been a close relationship between Vietnam and Germany. Around 100.000 Vietnamese who have worked, studied or received further training in Germany form a bridge between the two countries which is unique in Asia. Since 1993, KAAD has maintained cooperative relationships with individual Vietnamese universities, and thus contributing to the positive development of bilateral cultural relations. Just like the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation or the German Research Foundation (DFG), it supports Vietnamese who come to Germany for scientific research or studies. Based on Doi moi, the open-door policy of Vietnam which was initiated in the 1980s, KAAD has been working together with various Vietnamese partners at a governmental and non-governmental level for almost 30 years now. There is a KAAD partner committee in Ho Chi Minh City.
The Summer School “Water Resources Management in Karst Regions” is an integral part of the CLIENT Vietnam joint project “KaWaTech: Vietnamese-German Cooperation for the Development of Sustainable Technologies for Karst Water Management”. KAAD is responsible for its sub-project No. 8 “Capacity Development” whose aim is to strengthen the locals’ personnel skills (capacity development). Furthermore, the project aims at strengthening the capacities of local institutions and thus, the possibilities for cooperation of the institutions involved in Vietnam and Germany.

In close cooperation with the Institute for Water and River Basin Management (IWG) of the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), the Vietnam Institute of Geosciences and Mineral Resources (VIGMR) and various other European and Vietnamese partners, KAAD hold its second Sommer School on “Water Resources Management in Karst Regions”. Based on the results of the interdisciplinary joint project, which has been running since 2014, innovative technologies tailored to the framework conditions of the Karst regions of Northern Vietnam were presented to the participants of the event.48 people from Vietnam, Belgium and Germany attended the event.

After introductory remarks by Prof. Dr Tran Tan Van (VIGMR) and Dr Peter Oberle (KIT), Dr Heinrich Geiger (KAAD) gave a lecture on the topic of “German Cooperation in Science and Education“. The speaker stressed the aspects of interdisciplinarity and dialogue both of which play an important role in the work of KAAD. A lasting impression of the developments in German engineering was left by Dr Peter Oberle with his lecture on “Water Pump Based on Water Power”. His colleague Dr Marcel Riegel spoke about the entire water cycle, from source to consumer, with his lecture on “Water Treatment Technology”. In her lecture on “Hydrogeological Characterization, Monitoring and Modelling in Karst”, Dr Elisabeth Eiche presented the hydrogeological field methods to her audience. Thanks to the lecture by Prof. Dr Harro Stolpe, Ruhr University Bochum, on “Integrated Regional Water and Land Use Planning in Vietnam”, it became clear to the participants that Vietnam’s political decision makers in the field of water supply already have access to a wealth of material. However, the will to implement it politically and administratively still lacks, noted one listener. Fascinating was the lecture of the Belgian speleologist Dr David Lagrou whose research made the project “Water Resources Management in Karst Regions” possible.

Finally, the Summer School “Water Resources Management in Karst Regions” has promoted the confidence-building between the German and Vietnamese partners and the development of competence among the Vietnamese partner institutions involved in this project. What is more, it made an important contribution to a project which can only be carried out on an interdisciplinary basis. On the second and third day of the Summer School, an excursion to the project area took place.

As for the objectives of KAAD, see the following publications: