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Research topics MSc theses

Prof. Dr. Lars Ribbe

Master Thesis opportunity: Water + Food Security Nexus

Topic: Analyzing and quantifying the linkage between water and food security

Objectives (tentative):

  • State of art on quantification of the nexus between the water and food security nexus (literature review)
  • Assessment of a selected river basin in terms of water availability and demand, flood and drought risk, food production and demand
  • Quantification of water and food security considering spatial and temporal variability
  • Analysis of tradeoffs considering basic development scenarios for the selected basin

Options to do this research: Chile (Limari, Aconcagua), Ethiiopia/Sudan/Egypt: Eastern Nile Basin, or sub-basins), Vietnam (Vu Gia Thu bon river basin, Brazil (Macacu River Basin.

Partners: All above mentioned river basins form part of the current research of ITT, partners exist
Supervision:
Lars Ribbe, PhD students
Support:
Support for mobility and accommodation is usually available
Remarks and Opportunities:

 

Master Thesis opportunity: Water + Energy  Security Nexus

Topic: Analyzing and quantifying the linkage between water and energy security

Objectives (tentative):

  • State of art on quantification of the nexus between the water and energy security nexus (literature review)
  • Assessment of a selected river basin in terms of water availability and demand, energy production, potential and demand (focus on hydropower)
  • Quantification of water and energy security considering spatial and temporal variabilities
  • Analysis of tradeoffs considering basic development scenarios for the selected basin

Options to do this research: Chile (Limari, Aconcagua), Ethiiopia/Sudan/Egypt: Eastern Nile Basin, or sub-basins), Vietnam (Vu Gia Thu bon river basin)

Partners: All above mentioned river basins form part of the current research of ITT, partners exist
Supervision:
Lars Ribbe, Ramchandra Bhandari
Support:
Support for mobility and accommodation is usually available
Remarks and Opportunities:
Exact objectives depend on the choosen research area and will be adapted to the research interests of the student

 

Master Thesis opportunity: River Basin Management, Brazil

Topic: Developing Water Monitoring strategies to support water resources management in rural Rio de Janeiro

Objectives (tentative):

  • Approaches to community based water resources monitoring (literature review)
  • Data requirements for rural water resources management considering the decision making process
  • Option a) Selection of Technologies to support community based water resources monitoring (measurement, data transmission, data analysis and visualization); developing adequate concepts for water monitoring in rural areas
  • Option b) assessing the level of awareness of rural population and institutions regarding water resources issues; deriving adequate concepts for involving the rural population in monitoring programs

Partners: Several options: Universidade Federal Fluminense (UFF)
Supervision:
Lars Ribbe, Juan Ramirez
Support:
Support in accommodation near Niteroi can be offered, integration in research project INTECRAL
Remarks and Opportunities:
Exact objectives will be developed with student. Basic knowledge of Portuguese is recommended, especially for option b

 

Topic: Developing Water Governance strategies for Rural River Basin in Rio de Janeiro state

Objectives (tentative):

  • Local water governance approaches at Micro basin level  (literature review)
  • Current framework of river basin management in Brazil and Rio de Janeiro
  • Analyze the existing structures of water related governance in the selected basin of the Intecral project
  • Stakeholder analysis
  • Defining water management targets
  • Develop strategies for local organization of key management functions
  • Suggest strategies to finance water management measures at the micro basin level

Partners: Several options: Universidade Federal Fluminense (UFF)
Supervision:
Lars Ribbe, Juan Ramirez
Support:
Support in accommodation near Niteroi can be offered, integration in research project INTECRAL
Remarks and Opportunities:
Exact objectives will be developed with student. Basic knowledge of Portuguese is recommended,

 

Topic: Analysis of Water Related Ecosystem Services at Micro-Basin level

Objectives (tentative):

  • Water Related Ecosystem Services concepts and classification  (literature review)
  • Identifying water related ecosystem services in the selected basin of the Intecral project
  • Selection of one ecosystem service (eg provision of clean water, flood mitigation, water storage…) and quantification + mapping of this service
  • Suggesting a way to “manage” the selected ecosystem service

Partners: Several options: Universidade Federal Fluminense (UFF)
Supervision:
Lars Ribbe, Udo Nehren
Support:
Support in accommodation near Niteroi can be offered, integration in research project INTECRAL
Remarks and Opportunities:
Exact objectives will be developed with student. Basic knowledge of Portuguese is recommended.

 

Master Thesis opportunity: River Ecology, Brazil

Topic: Ecomorphological typology of rivers in the Mata Atlânica Fluminense

Objectives (tentative):

  • River classification approaches worldwide (Literature review)
  • River classification for tropical rivers (Literature review)
  • Defining the river classification approach for the project region (Methodology development)
  • Investigating reference sites in the project region (Field work)
  • Statistical analysis of classification parameters to derive river types (e. g. cluster analysis)
  • Presenting existing river types in the project region (River type characterization sheets)

Partners: Several options: Universidade Federal Fluminense (UFF)
Supervision:
Lars Ribbe, Georg Meier
Support:
Support in accommodation near Niteroi can be offered, integration in research project INTECRAL
Remarks and Opportunities:
We recommend a scientific paper based thesis.

 

Master Thesis opportunity: River Ecology, Brazil

Topic: Ecomorphological assessment of rivers in the Mata Atlânica Fluminense

Objectives (tentative):

  • Getting knowledge about the EMU-method (Ecomorphological Management Units) developed at the ITT
  • Applying the EMU-method in the project region
  • Applying classic ecomorphological assessment methods in the project region
  • Qualitative and quantitative comparison of the EMU-method with classic methods
  • Evaluation of the capabilities of the EMU-method

Partners: to be defined, Universidade Federal Fluminense (UFF)
Supervision:
Lars Ribbe, Georg Meier
Support:
Support in accommodation near Niteroi can be offered, integration in research project INTECRAL
Remarks and Opportunities:
We recommend a scientific paper based thesis.

 

Master Thesis opportunity: Hydrogeological assessment in the high elevation Andean cordillera, Central Chile

Topic: Semiarid Northern Central Chile with mean annual precipitation rates of 140 mm is extremely vulnerable to climate variability and change. Although at an elevation above 3000m in the Andean Cordillera precipitation rates are estimated to be around 500 mm, only few rainfall events are occurring throughout the year and baseflow in the dry season relies on groundwater. The study area, the Limarí river basin, with its intensive agriculture relies on the mountainous hydrology and the dynamics of the cryosphere in the high Andes Cordillera.

Geochemical analyses of groundwater springs can provide valuable information to improve the understanding of ground water aquifers in the high Central Chilean Andes and hence the baseflow and hydrograph.

Based on the results, water availability projections can be simulated for different climate scenarios.

Objectives (tentative):

  • Improve understanding of geology and high elevation aquifers: fossil or renewable?
  • Estimate recharge rates considering past meteorological time series and runoff
  • Geo-chemical tracer analysis of groundwater springs

Partners: ITT, University of La Serena, Mining and geology department, Centre for Research in Arid Regions (CEAZA), La Serena
Supervision:
Lars Ribbe, Alexandra Nauditt, Prof Schüth (TU Darmstadt)
Support:
Costs required for obtaining primary and secondary data as well as travel +accommodation costs will be covered
Remarks and Opportunities:
Work in the scope of BMBF funded projects on water use efficiency and join research team of hydrologists and water managers.

Basic knowledge of Spanish is recommended.

 

Master Thesis opportunity: (Transboundary) Water Governance, Eastern Nile Basin

Topic: Impact of Stakeholder Relationships and Institutional Reforms on Performance of the Irrigation Management System in the Gezira Scheme

Objectives (tentative):

  • Analyze the recent legislative and policy reforms in the Gezira irrigation scheme
  • Define the different roles, relationships and responsibilities of stakeholders in the Gezira irrigation scheme
  • Investigate the attitudes, interests, issues and potential conflicts among stakeholders using qualitative survey methods
  • Investigate the effects of reforms on the overall performance of the scheme
  • Recommend future reforms and policy amendments

Partners: Khartoum University, Gezira University, Agricultural Research Center, etc.
Supervision:
Lars Ribbe, Mohammad Al-Saidi
Support:
Costs required for obtaining primary and secondary data as well as travel +accommodation costs will be covered
Remarks and Opportunities:
Join the Nile Basin research team at ITT and develop a network with leading research institutions in Ethiopia, Sudan and Egypt.

 

Master Thesis opportunity: (Transboundary) Water Governance, Eastern Nile Basin

Topic: Complexity-based approaches in Conflict Analysis of Transboundary Water Management

Objectives (tentative):

  • Elaborate on the potential of complexity-based approaches (multi-agent decision support systems) in research on transboudary water management conflicts
  • Compare different multi-agents models of conflict analysis and negotiations using the example of the Easter Nile basin (e.g. Graph Model)
  • Investigate the conflict states, history and future evolvement
  • Develop recommendations for the use of complexity-based modeling tools for conflict understanding and resolution

Partners: Khartoum University, Addis Ababa University, Gezira University, etc.
Supervision:
Lars Ribbe, Mohammad Al-Saidi
Support:
Costs required for obtaining primary and secondary data as well as travel +accommodation costs will be covered
Remarks and Opportunities:
Join the Nile Basin research team at ITT and develop a network with leading research institutions in Ethiopia, Sudan and Egypt.

 

Master Thesis opportunity: (Transboundary) Water Governance, Eastern Nile Basin

Topic: Local Governance Assessment of Agricultural Land Use Management in the Upper Nile Basin

Objectives (tentative):

  • Study the legislative framework governing agricultural land use in Ethiopia as well as measures to ensure food security
  • Define the different stakeholders with their roles and responsibility in the case study region (Gondar region)
  • Conduct a governance assessment in regard to land use management using an adequate methods (e.g. local governance barometer)
  • Compare findings on the governance performance in the case study region to findings from secondary literature
  • Recommend reforms, improvements and opportunities for future reforms

Partners: Khartoum University, Addis Ababa University, International Water Management Institute, etc.
Supervision:
Lars Ribbe, Mohammad Al-Saidi
Support:
Costs required for obtaining primary and secondary data as well as travel +accommodation costs will be covered
Remarks and Opportunities:
Join the Nile Basin research team at ITT and develop a network with leading research institutions in Ethiopia, Sudan and Egypt.

 

Master Thesis opportunity: (Transboundary) Water Governance, Eastern Nile Basin

Topic: Comparison of Local Adaptation Methods to Climate Change and Variability in Different Agricultural Land Use Systems

Objectives (tentative):

  • Collect basic information on land use characteristics and climatic data
  • Investigate existent local (farm or scheme level) adaptation levels to climate variability in rain-fed (e.g. upper Ethiopia or Gadaref region in Sudan) and irrigation agriculture (e.g. Gezira Scheme)
  • Compare the different adaptation measures across land use system and to commendations in literature or international experiences
  • Examine the effects of adaptation measures in one agricultural land use system on the other
  • Outline critical issues and provide recommendations for increasing resilience of the different systems

Partners: Khartoum University, Addis Ababa University, International Water Management Institute
Supervision:
Lars Ribbe, Mohammad Al-Saidi
Support:
Costs required for obtaining primary and secondary data as well as travel +accommodation costs will be covered, etc.
Remarks and Opportunities:
Join the Nile Basin research team at ITT and develop a network with leading research institutions in Ethiopia, Sudan and Egypt.

 

Master Thesis opportunity: (Transboundary) Water Governance, Eastern Nile Basin

Topic: Comparative Analysis of Sectoral Integration and Policy Coherence for Land, Water and Energy Management in the Eastern Nile Basin

Objectives (tentative):

  • Analyze policies in Ethiopia, Sudan and Egypt to integrate different issues of land, water and energy management
  • Investigate cross-sectoral coordination and policy integration in the different countries
  • Assess policy fit and coherence in the three case study countries (using qualitative research and assessment grids)
  • Elaborate on the different paths for natural resources governance in the three countries and their relationships to resource use, geography, hydrology, and issues like historical path dependencies
  • Recommend policy reforms in case study countries and up-scale recommendations for the overall basin governance or cooperation under the Nile Basin Initiative

Partners: Khartoum University, Addis Ababa University, International Water Management Institute, Ain Shams University etc.
Supervision:
Lars Ribbe, Mohammad Al-Saidi
Support:
Costs required for obtaining primary and secondary data as well as travel +accommodation costs will be covered
Remarks and Opportunities:
Join the Nile Basin research team at ITT and develop a network with leading research institutions in Ethiopia, Sudan and Egypt.

 

Master Thesis opportunity: Project related master thesis topics

Topic: Development of Community Based Monitoring for Early warning system (Vietnam or Bangladesh)

Objectives:

  • Identify the existing early warning system at the community level.
  • Determine the information requirements at different institutional levels regarding early warning
  • Incorporating technological interface (i.e., application of smartphone, mobile sms or other system) to enhance the existing EWS
  • Explore the drawbacks and advantages of the system and recommend future concepts.

Partners: ICCCAD, IIED, IUB (Bangladesh) and CTIC, VAWR (Vietnam)
Supervision:
Lars Ribbe, A.B.M Firoz
Support:
Costs required for obtaining primary and secondary data as well as travel +accommodation costs will be covered
Remarks and Opportunities:

This is a project that will be started in the next year and therefore a very good demonstration will give the advantage to join the next research team for Bangladesh Project. Additionally, you will have the opportunity to meet with other research institute for e.g., IIED an UK based leading climate research group and also facilitate to develop your own network of collaboration and cooperation.

 

Topic: Development of Community Resilience Index (CRI) / Coastal Zone (Bangladesh)

Objectives:

  • Explore the risk and resilience to natural hazard at the community level
  • Developing an appropriate community resilience index (CRI)
  • Applying the index through the completion and repetitive use of self-assessment tool to determine risk and preparedness to future disaster event at the community (this index will serve as a baseline assessment to monitor change over time)
  • To provide status quo information and future scenario to the Disaster Risk Reduction authority for guidance.

Partners: ICCCAD, IIED, IUB
Supervision:
Lars Ribbe, A.B.M Firoz
Support:
Costs required for obtaining primary and secondary data as well as travel +accommodation costs will be covered
Remarks and Opportunities:

 

Topic: Water Demand Analysis of the Lower VGTB (Vietnam)

Objectives:

  • Characterizing the existing water uses/demand in the Lower Vu Gia Thu Bon River basin (agricultural, industrial, domestic, aquatic and livestock)
  • Using Mike Basin model to calculate the water balance in the lower VGTB
  • Developing Scenario for future water demand at the river basin

Partners: CTIC, VAWR,
Supervision:
Lars Ribbe, A.B.M Firoz
Support:
Costs required for obtaining primary and secondary data as well as travel +accommodation costs will be covered
Remarks and Opportunities:
You will learn a lot about data analysis and modeling while being integrated in an active research team at ITT.

 

Topic: Multiple Reservoir Optimization/ Reservoir Operation Management at the VGTB river basin / Vietnam

Objectives:

  • Analysis the existing reservoir operation rules in the study area
  • Model the existing multiple reservoir operation using Hec-ResSim model
  • Using Genetic Algorithm to optimize the reservoir operation using Hec-ResSim Model
  • Proposed operation rules for the reservoirs.

Partners: CTIC, VAWR,
Supervision:
Lars Ribbe, A.B.M Firoz
Support:
Costs required for obtaining primary and secondary data as well as travel +accommodation costs will be covered
Remarks and Opportunities:
You will have a chance to be integrated into an active research team at ITT and the research project LUCCi

 

Topic: Design of Environmental Monitoring Network at Vu Gia Thu Bon River Basin

Objectives:

  • Analysis of exiting observation network (rainfall, climate, water level and discharge) at the VGTB Basin
  • Identify the potential location for installation of further monitoring stations (based on various optimization techniques)
  • Proposed a monitoring network framework of VGTB

Partners: CTIC, VAWR,
Supervision:
Lars Ribbe, A.B.M Firoz
Support:
Costs required for obtaining primary and secondary data as well as travel +accommodation costs will be covered
Remarks and Opportunities:
You will have a chance to be integrated into an active research team at ITT and the research project LUCCi

 

Topic: Water management strategies under regional development scenarios in Lower VGTB/Vietnam

Any of the four issues can be chosen

  1. Governance and Management: This component will describes all aspects of the water strategies which are related to policy and management decisions in a wide sense. In particular a management model to integrate disaster risk management at the river basin level should be analyzed
  2. Water supply, new water sources and infrastructure: In view of the increasing water demand and decreasing precipitation an augmentation of water resources is among the main measures to mitigate both, water scarcity and decreasing water reliability
  3.  Agriculture and environment: Agriculture is the biggest consumer of water and land resources and, because much of it is irrigated, one of the most vulnerable sectors with respect to climate changes. On the other hand, it offers opportunities to contribute to the conservation of both kinds of resources.
  4. Adaptation to climate extremes: Coping with extreme fluctuations in precipitation is one of the key issues of future water management

Objectives:

The exact objectives will be developed jointly with the MSc student according to the above mentioned topics. Regarding the scenario development the following steps are foreseen:

  • In a first step sub-regional water strategies will be developed (particularly interesting for the lower VGTB region) based on the socio-economic conditions prescribed by the regional development scenarios.
  • The second step involves finalizing the strategies and develop the management strategies on the regional level using back-casting procedures by setting a target for the year 2020 and then going backward in time defining measures necessary to achieve this target.
  • The final step will be to verify the regional water strategies with respect to the overall regional water balance, their ability to cope with climate extremes and their environmental impacts and how to deal with them.

Partners: CTIC, VAWR,
Supervision:
Lars Ribbe, Alexandra Nauditt, Rui Pedroso, A.B.M Firoz
Support:
Costs required for obtaining primary and secondary data as well as travel +accommodation costs will be covered
Remarks and Opportunities:

You will have a chance to be integrated into an active research team at ITT and the research project LUCCi

 

Supported by

DAAD

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