Cape Town is experiencing a severe water shortage. Despite strict water rations, the city is preparing for ‘Day Zero’, the day when the authorities turn off water for most of the city’s households. How did it come to this? We asked Arjen Hoekstra, Professor in Water Management at the University of Twente.
‘In the right place, at the right time’ almost never applies to earthquakes. Nevertheless, ITC professor Mark van der Meijde uses this expression when he talks about an earthquake that happened earlier this year in Botswana. It confirmed exactly what his colleagues and he suspected: the African soil is completely unlike what scientists have always believed it to be – which can have major consequences for the continent.
African students from the UT came together yesterday for an ‘African ThinkUp’, an event focused on discussing and helping to solve challenges that African countries are dealing with nowadays. This meeting might have only been the first of many, as its organizers hope to establish an African student association.
Two UT Honours students, Sarah Wiegard and Sven Kruthoff, are hosting a fundraising rally on the 15th and 22nd of June to combat the effects of hunger and drought in South Sudan. Partnering with the Welthungerhilfe charity organization, the duo is hoping to induce change in people’s donating behaviour as a part of their Honours graduation project.
In the Netherlands and other developed countries, all land rights are documented and recorded in a land registry. Each property has a verifiable owner and a mapped boundary. There are, however, about 150 countries, which can´t maintain such a tenure recording system and that leads to many disputes, land grabbing, slum formation, and other issues. Aiming to resolve this, ITC faculty of the University of Twente is leading an international project titled its4land, focused on mapping land rights in East Africa.
Born in the USA, studies in the Netherlands, work in Bolivia, Master’s degree in Spain and Sweden... and now a PhD position at ITC. That is Caroline Gevaert’s life in a nutshell. The research of this cosmopolitan PhD candidate is focused on mapping informal settlements with unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). ‘I can’t believe it’s my job,' she says about flying drones in Africa.
Within five years, Xavier Ikejemba wants to give electricity access to 100.000 African households through his own company. Within three to four years, he wants to finish his dissertation on enhancing sustainable development of Africa. Eventually, he even wants to be the president of his home country Nigeria. ‘There’s no time to waste.’
There is no specific protocol regarding the Ebola outbreakfor students who come from Africa and will soon start their study program at the ITC faculty. However, the ITC Student Affairs department keeps in close contact with the Community Health Service (GGD) and the Veldpoort healthcare centre in Enschede.