Mapping potential sources of water conflicts.


Water conflicts are a geopolitical issue in many parts of the world. In Africa, access to water and control over the management of water points are at the center of important issues and can constitute sources of conflict. It is in this context that the Pole Eau de Dakar (PED) intends to launch a reflection and a watch on the potential sources of conflict related to Senegal and other regions as far as possible.

In its ambition to have a regional anchorage with an international scope and to make water resources a factor of peace and security in the sub-region, the PED is based on four strategic pillars:


P1. Networking, multi-stakeholder and multi-thematic dialogue;


P2. Promotion of cooperation and peace, multi-level approach;


P3. Development of capacities, knowledge and innovations;


P4. Support to territorial dynamics, capitalization and dissemination.


This study is in line with pillar 2 of the PED, which emphasizes the promotion and strengthening of cooperation and peace around water. This work complements the work on water and peace and focuses on the potential sources of water-related conflicts at national and transboundary levels.

This study will therefore provide a vision of vulnerable or at-risk areas in order to enable better conflict prevention and management. The specialization of resources, uses and conflicts that could arise from them would allow a global reading of the conflict risk situation in water territories.


This study is part of a conflict prevention approach. The aim of the study is to identify potential sources of conflict and to represent them on a spatial and temporal basis with well-defined indicators.


In terms of geographical scope, the study will first focus on a national scale (Senegal) and then be extended to a transboundary basin scale. The study will take into account the water-related issues in the sub-region as well as the need to preserve the achievements in terms of cooperation and peace. Specifically, it will aim to:

  1. Identify and analyses the sources and types of conflict by linking availability, level of access and sustainable management of the resource;
  2. Characterize the relationships between stakeholders in the framework of water management and uses identify the types of uses (domestic and professional) in relation to the historical evolution of the user’s establishment;
  3. Analyze the current management and conflict prevention system from local to river basin level;
  4. To propose a warning system and/or index to prevent conflicts related to water in springs.

The idea is also to reflect on the implementation of a freshwater simulator in the sub-region or in Senegal, in terms of quantification and prediction of water masses. This will involve implementing reliable models of the behavior of our water bodies, coupled with data on withdrawals and pollution. It would allow planning and prediction of incidental and accidental behavior to ensure the efficiency and sustainability of the infrastructures that will be put in place.


In the process of being identified and we remain open to any collaboration related to this study.