Présentations Colloques

    Oral Presentation
    Session 7.07: Transdisciplinary and participatory approaches in groundwater research and management
    Bakari Ali
    The Role of Hydrogeologists as social-scientists in Nigeria- from theory to practice
    Socio-hydrogeology is an evolving branch of hydrogeology. The requirement for possessing a multi-disciplinary stance by hydrogeologists is vital in managing the impacts of socio-cultural activities on groundwater resources. In Nigeria and many other countries across sub-Saharan Africa, geology and hydrogeology are still largely mono-disciplinary in nature+ while the need to integrating the dynamic relationship between the scientific and social-cultural dimensions of both geology and hydrogeology remains crucial in the 21st century. The objective of this paper is to evaluate the role of hydrogeologists as social scientists in Nigeria and suggest ways of promoting socio-hydrogeology in the country. This has been achieved by interviewing various hydrogeologists in the academia, independent consultancy sphere, and government agencies between December 2015 and February 2016. Other category of hydrogeologists engaged in the study+ via a survey are students and graduates of geology and hydrogeology. The result show that most of the interviewees see themselves as scientists (hydrogeologists) other than socio-scientists. This opinion was also the same for the survey participants. The majority of respondents are of the opinion that social sciences are not well integrated into hydrogeological research. The paper suggests a much deeper involvement of hydrogeologists in aspects related to socio-cultural issues of water management, facilitation of knowledge exchange programmes among hydrogeologists and social scientists, and the integration of social aspects of groundwater management into the current hydro (geo) logical curriculum in Nigeria. The final outcomes of the study are expected increased awareness among hydrogeologists and other relevant stakeholders. This will ensure the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goal (6) on water.


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