GWP Senior Knowledge Management Officer Dr. Danka Thalmeinerova conducted a training on the IWRM ToolBox in Sao Paolo, Brazil, on 9-10 December. The workshop was targeted at university lecturers from Bolivia, Chile, Peru, Uruguay, Venezuela, Ecuador, Colombia, and Brazil.
The workshop was attended by 31 lecturers and 4 MSc students. All participants were selected by GWP Brazil and the event was hosted by GWP Brazil, together with the Universidade de Brasília, UNESCO, and Agência Nacional de Águas (ANA).
The participants were trained in how to use and apply the Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) ToolBox in education, and how to use an interactive teaching and learning methodology, called Concept Maps. It was an opportunity to present ToolBox case studies that were tested through drawings and maps. This allowed the creation of linkages between action, outcome, and lessons learnt.
It was a dynamic workshop with lots of discussion, said Dr. Thalmeinerova. “There is a great interest in GWP knowledge products in South America, although not all materials are accessible to everybody due to the language barrier,” she said.
The most obvious challenge to Dr. Thalmeinerova was how to organize the curriculum optimally to facilitate meaningful learning, since IWRM is complex and multidisciplinary. The Concept Maps worked well in this case. “It is important to recognize that a Concept Map is never finished. The most important factor is finding interactions between actions that damage the environment and actions that are supposed to remediate the damage,” explained Dr. Thalmeinerova.
Two case studies from the ToolBox were used for the training, and one case study by Renato Saraiva of the Brazilian Ministry Department of Watershed Revitalization – this case study will be developed in English and uploaded to the ToolBox in due course.
Photo: Discussions were lively at the workshop