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Final PhD Seminar What Is A Water Conflict?

Friday 3 November 2017, 11am 12.30pm
Speaker While large-scale dams, canals, and interbasin water
transfers represent sources of development, prosperity
Ehsan Nabavi
and justice for a society, they might work in the
PhD Candidate
opposite direction for the others, representing a source
ANU Centre for European Studies
of extreme concern and worry. They can trap societies
Research School of Social Sciences
and nations into an escalating spiral of conflict and
The Australian National University
sometimes pro-war rhetoric.
Although these hydraulic infrastructures are often
perceived as the outcome of addressing the challenge
The Nye Hughes Room of increasing water demand and diminishing
ANU Centre for European Studies resources, they are more than that. As a mirror of
The Australian National University society, such infrastructure gives an image about
Building 67C, 1 Liversidge Street key objectives, and what economic, political, social
Canberra ACT 2601 and cultural characteristics of the future the society
seeks to acquire. They are embedded in less tangible interactions occurring within and
Map reference between governments, science and communities. They are brought into being through nested networks of heterogeneous elements interacting together, including engineering
maps#show=29321 expertise, economic calculation, environmental history, social identity, political reasoning,
and legal capacity. In these hybrid networks, everything is connected to everything else,
including the past to the future.
However, such connections in water governance and sustainability studies are often left
unidentified because of the assumption of the division between culture and nature, and
between the human and the nonhuman, as separate categories.
Presented by In this seminar, Ehsan will focus on a selection of the findings from his 5-year PhD
program, including a conceptual framework for understanding water conflict that
integrates some aspects
of contemporary thinking
on actor-network theory,
critical realism, and socio-
technical imaginaries in
the most conflict-ridden
ANU College of
water conflict in Iran: the
Arts & Social Sciences Zayandeh-Rood River
and the city of Isfahan.
The lessons learned that
are relevant for other sub-
national and international
water conflicts in the
region and elsewhere will
also be explored. Siosepol Bridge on the Zayandeh-Rood River, Isfahan, Iran, 2014

ANUCES is an initiative involving six ANU Ehsan Nabavi is a PhD candidate at the ANU Centre for European Studies within the
Colleges (Arts & Social Sciences; Law; Research School of Social Sciences. He was Research Fellow with the program on science,
Business & Economics; Asia & the Pacific;
technology and society at the John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University
Science; and Engineering & Computer
Science) co-funded by ANU and the (201617). He was also a Visiting Scholar at the Centre for Water and Development, SOAS
European Union. University of London, and the Center for Development Research (ZEF), University of Bonn,
T +61 2 6125 9896 2015. His research focuses on understanding water conflict formation, evolution, and
E W transformation, particularly in the Middle East and the Central Asia.
MO_###### | CRICOS# 00120C